Maybach Music Week: Pill Opens About Signing With Ross, New Beginnings And Not Beefing With Other Crews

Atlanta-based rapper Pill first had a spark with his ’09 mixtape 4180: The Prescription, catching listeners with his rambunctious cut “Trap Goin’ Ham.” Following the release with two additional mixtapes (4075: The Refill and 1140: The Overdose), the Southern MC was able to secure his status as one of the most promising talents to rise from ATL’s underbelly, within the last few years. While Pill’s impact was slowly felt on the underground realm, it never fully materialized into a package that could tackle the mainstream audience. But the stalemate has come to an end with his newfound affiliation with Rick Ross’ Maybach Music Group.

When Rozay decided to create his own imprint, he accumulated a list of the hip-hop industry’s self-developed rap names, including Wale and Meek Mill. Though, he’s been living on the road in support of his clique’s debut album, Self Made Vol. 1, his forthcoming solo mixtape The Diagnosis, along with his debut The Medicine, and an EP titled The Epidemic aren’t far away. Days before the group’s LP dropped, Pill caught up with VIBE and opened up about his newborn career under Ross’ tutelage, acting in an indie film and his views on getting along with other crews. Jaeki Cho

VIBE: You guys just released Self Made Vol. 1, but I know you have solo projects coming very soon. What correlates them all? Is there a theme?

Pill: Yeah, when I first took rap seriously I said I was the medicine. One of the reasons for my name Pill is that I’m the cure for rap cancer. Therefore, it’s The Medicine for my debut LP. That’s why you got The Prescription, that’s why you got The Refill, you got The Overdose, but The Medicine to cure it all, you feel me?

I want to go into your newfound relationship with Maybach Music Group. Can you elaborate on how you first linked up with them? How did you first meet Ross?

I first met Ross last year when he was down here in Atlanta doing a video for the remix of “Super High” with Curren$y and Wiz. A friend of mine, Tuki, owns a tattoo shop on Peter Street in Atlanta. I’ve known Ross, but that was the first time I met up with him. We chopped it up, and exchanged info, and we did what that song was about—got super high [Laughs.] It was Ross himself offered the opportunity. So I thought, “Yo, what better opportunity is there?” I needed that mainstream push. I was at the underground level, and I had a little taste of mainstream, but I was never on the platform that [Ross] is on. And with him snatching up, me, Meek, and Wale, and actually putting us out there, I applaud that. That was everything that we discussed, and he actually did it. Like other labels will get guys who are talented, and have the capability to be mainstream, but don’t really have that push. Or the label executives don’t really get it, or don’t really understand what they have on their hands, because a lot of us are looking for a quick buck. When you got somebody like Ross, he actually understands this because he actually been through it, and he’s been in the game for 10-plus years. And he’s fully capable of establishing other artists because he established himself in a higher plateau than we are. So by combining all forces, it’s even better.

I’ve heard you say before you never wanted to be in anyone’s shadow, how do you feel about that now?

With this particular situation, it’s everybody doing them. Nobody’s switching up anything. Ross is basically just giving us the opportunity to shine. Using his outlets to make a way for us, which is basically some brotherly-love-type shit. I’ve already established myself, I’ve already garnered a fan base, and showed people what I was capable of doing solo. I didn’t come out the gate with a co-sign. That’s why the title of the album is called Self Made Vol. 1.

But Ross is still the key figure in this label. Do you think signing with Ross’ imprint might shadow your presence in the limelight?

Nah, I don’t think that at all because I know how to rap. [Laughs.] So that kills everything. You see someone like J.Cole he raps his ass off. People might think of Jay-Z, but [J.Cole] can rap. Drake’s with Wayne, but Drake makes smash hits because he knows how to rap. So I don’t think people who are talented actually have those problems.

Growing up, what rap label did you want to get signed to?

The one I liked the most was Rocafella when I was coming up, because I was a fan of Jay-Z. But ultimately my favorite movement was OutKast and the Dungeon Family. And people don’t know I started out with Killer Mike and OutKast at the age of 17. And now I’m about to do an album with Big Boi and Killer Mike. And Andre’s still good friends. Coming up, that’s who you looked up to, and that’s not because I’m from the South, but that’s just who everybody looked up to. Nobody was making records like OutKast.

Is your new affiliation with MMG your first chance to prove yourself to the mainstream?

I look at it as another blessing. And put every side I ever lived in on the map, and speak for people who can’t speak, and be a voice for those who aren’t heard. And be somewhat of a role model to some kids as well. So I just see this as another opportunity, and another blessing, and I look at it as kind of a second go round, but then again, like a new beginning.


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Gucci Mane, XXXTentacion, & More Friday Releases You Need To Hear

Another week, another list of Friday music releases. The week's of 2018 are dwindling, but there is a little more time left for some last-minute music releases. From Gucci Mane, to XXXTentacion, and Ice Cube, here are the albums and singles that you need to hear.

Gucci Mane – Evil Genius

Gucci Mane's 13th studio album is here. The rapper dropped his new project, Evil Genius, featuring an all-star list of talent, including, Quavo, Kevin Gates, Lil Skies and 21 Savage. The LP also features production by Metro Boomin, Murda Beatz and Southside.

The latest music drop marks the perfect finish to an eventful year for Guwop. He previously dropped DropTopWop, Mr. Davis, and El Gato The Human Glacier this year. Even so, the rapper suggested that he wants to make a bang with Evil Genius.

"I think this time, this album was like the first time I kind of had more fun making the records," he said during an interview with Beats 1. "With the intentions of just going in the studio and just had fun and this is what came out. But before, I was kind of going and expressing myself, talking through the mic, like I had a lot of my chest. This album was like, let's find the best beat, make the best song and put it out."

XXXTentacion – Skins

In celebration of XXXTentacion's posthumous album, Skins, his estate and friends through a livestreamed event at 9p.m. EST, featuring Trippie Redd, PnB Rock, Ski Mask the Slump God, Matt Ox and more.

There has been quite a bit of buzz surrounding the late rapper's new release. It's his first since his death in June 2018. The album features only one guest appearance from Kanye West. On the track, which is entitled "On Minute," Ye reportedly addressed abuse allegations brought against X. In support of the album, Kanye also released a Yeezy capsule collection, commemorating their single.

Since X's death he has been regarded as a young legend, gone too soon. His sophomore album ?  peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart. Listen to Skins below.

Ice Cube – Everythang's Corrupt

Ice Cube is make with Everythang's Corrupt. The album's only feature is OG rapper Too $hort.

Cube already got fan excited after released the one of the LP's single "Arrest the President." The track takes aim at President Trump's corruption and racist policies. The album's cover art features Cube holding a 100-dollar bill in his bloodied hands.

Everythang's Corrupt is Cube's tenth studio album and his first in eight years. It's a follow-up to 2010's I Am the West.

Sneakk Ft. YG & Tyga – "Spray"

New artist Sneak has joind forces with YG and Tyga to bring their new banger "Spray." It's Sneakk's first track released through Def Jam. The single definitely sounds like the new stripper anthem or the perfect track to ride down the block to.

Ahead of the single's release, the rapper's shared a teaser on social media featuring a behind the scenes look at their music video.

Michelle Williams – "Fearless"

Michelle Williams is back. The songstress – best known as a member of the popular girls group Destiny's Child – recently dropped a new solo record entitled "Fearless."

The pop record is an inspirational anthem, encouraging fans to face their fears and chase their dreams. This is a huge moment for Williams, as it is her first single in nearly four years. It also follows an overwhelming year for the singer, who got engaged in Apr. 2018, as well as publicly revealed her battle with depression and mental illness.

Listen to the new track below.

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Premiere: Fuego And A. Chal Take Over The Strip Club In "Dancin" Music Video

Dominican trap artist Fuego has created an ode to the art of stripping with his new single “Dancin,” featuring producer and R&B extraordinaire A. Chal. The visuals for the track are laced with bright blue club lights and brief salacious interludes of voluptuous young ladies dancing provocatively.

The two are seemingly in a never-ending party in efforts to promote strip club etiquette through their tantalizing lyrics. There's no denying that Fuego's sound is reminiscent of today's prominent trap artists like Migos and Future, but he packs in a Latino flair, like his contemporaries Bad Bunny and El Alfa. The Washington D.C. native's sound is similar, but it's worth noting he's been on the scene for a while, steadily etching his mark as his musical prowess rises within hip-hop and Latin audiences.

“For some reason, I've always wanted to do a sound that American hip-hop has, and then break that my way,” he tells VIBE. “When it comes to putting stuff together and making fusions of music, I've done it all my life. When I first started out, I did reggae beats, but I was rapping over them. There’s a little more urban, hip-hop sound in the Latin community. Before, it was mad reggae. It either had to be a tropical type song or reggaeton song. I've always wanted to come out with hip-hop music."

Watch the video for "Dancin" below.

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Noname Tells A Tale Of Black Boy Plight In 'Blaxploitation' Visual

Noname's first music video is better than expected as the artist takes on the topics of dangerous implicit biases toward young men of color.

On Tuesday (Dec. 4), the Chicago rapper/poet released "Blaxploitation," a standout from her critically acclaimed album, Room 25. Directed by Alex Lill (Sampha, Joey Bada$$,  Lil Yachty) and written by Noname, the short film includes homages to Blaxploitation films of the 70s through its the style of multiple frames at once as a toddler wrecks havoc on a small-scale version of Chicago.

The music video gives the metaphorical message of how the black boy is criminalized from the beginning of his life. Even in the joy of imagination, his existence is subjected to a criminal or as the townspeople deem him: a monster baby.

The 27-year-old singer will continue riding high off the critically and streaming success of her debut album Room 25 as she will embark on a 37-city trek across the country and Canada.

The Room 25 tour kicks off in Detriot on Jan. 2nd. Dates can be found here.

READ MORE: Noname To Replace ‘Room 25’ Album Art After Designer Abuse Accusations

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