fashawn-vibe-interview-the-ecology- fashawn-vibe-interview-the-ecology-

Exclusive: Fashawn Talks 'The Ecology' Album, His Childhood And Working With Nas

Gold Jesus pieces, hefty Hublot wrist wear, and foreign cars. Such said subject matter has been the main topic in hip-hop for a while now. That much is evident by turning on the radio or checking any current rap blogs. Missing from the culture is the fortune of validity and thought provoking narratives that capture the heart of growing up in the hood.

With that said, VIBE wants to re-introduce you to one of Nas' newest hand picked messiahs, Fashawn. If hip-hop was a war, Fash would be the toxic sniper in the cut knocking heads off. His flow is fierce, but by nature, he's somewhat of a reserved individual. He's doesn't boast about outrageous purchase like everyone else. He just knows that he's nice.

Fash has been blessing beats and ears with substance driven lyrics and gripping commentary for a minute now. Unfortunately, that's that shit that radio don't like, so the Cali MC may be under the average listeners' radar. Back in 2006, Fash kicked in the door with Grizzly City, a mixtape that garnered the then rookie rapper a slot on Planet Asia’s tour. Soon after, the Frenso native inked a deal with the independent One Records for the release of 2009's critically-acclaimed album, Boy Meets World.

BMW was welcomed by mainstream media outlets and hip-hop fans alike. Thanks to the impeccable Boy Meets World, Fash earned a few coveted magazine covers and re'd-up on co-signs from the likes of Talib Kweli, Ghostface Killah and Wiz Khalifa.

Since then, Fashawn has worked with iconic producers 9th Wonder, Alchemist, with whom he recently released the FASH-ionably Late mixtape with — Evidence, J. Cole and more. He even joined Left Coast's golden child Kendrick Lamar on stage for a healthy freestyle set.

Fast forward to 2015, Fash’s blood shot eyed-grind, exceptional commentary, fierce lyricism caught the attention of Nasir Jones, resulting in a deal with Mass Appeal Records. With his sophomore album, The Ecology — executive produced by Nas — in-stores now, Fash is back to wax poetically about the hardships, dreams, rainy and sunny days in the every day struggle. VIBE hit Fash on the phone to discuss The Ecology,working with Nas, being nicked-named Lil’ Nas, his childhood, and much more.

Fash's Introduction to Recording
“I was raised by a single parent home so I kind of gravitated toward notebooks and that gravitated into me putting it on record. They weren’t ever raps at that point, just me expressing how I felt. This was around six or seven years old. Fast forward to years later, and I dropped Grizzly City 1 with my manager Aren [Hekimian]. I was just a kid running around getting in trouble. But one day I just kidnapped him (Hekimian) and threw him in the studio, and I’ve been recording since."

On His Writing Style.
"I used to spend days and hours on verses. Now I know what I’m doing with that verse so I really put more thought into it. It’s just raw emotion. As I grew older my perspective broaden. I didn’t read too much but I live everyday. Everyday something crazy happens. So I stay awake, you know what I mean?”

The Preparation for Boy Meets World.
“By the time I recorded my first album, I’d had like six mixtapes. That was making me better. By the time I dropped Boy Meets World I was overly prepared. “

Surpassing Boy Meets World.
“I’m going to go past and beyond that my brother.”

How He Made The Ecology.
“I been working on it for like the last year or so. This is the moment that I’ve been waiting for. I’ve always wanted to be a part of a really dope dynasty, a dope album and it’s been brought to reality. And to have Nas' blessing... he is one of the most elite MCs in the world.”

Linking with Nas.
“I was making a lot of music and somehow I came across his radar. He heard what I had to say and that was enough conviction for him to buy me a plane ticket to South By Southwest to meet me in person. After that moment I was flying back and forth, and we were getting to know each other in person. We inked the deal last year and been working ever since then. It was already mutual respect so it was just a matter of vibing with him. Everybody was already calling me "lil' Nas" around here. If you would’ve asked my three years ago, I couldn’t have guessed this."

“I’d send Nas something, and the next morning I’d get a call from the god about it or something about the album. So, he was really involved through the whole process to the point where he wasn’t just putting his name on it but really executive producing it."

“When I turned in my final project, well what I thought was my final project, I played him this called…I think that might be on the iTunes version but I played him the song all the way through and he was like, ‘This record is not what it can be. You might want to approach that second verse differently.' So I did another verse, he wanted me to play the record again. So we played it again and he was like, ‘You know what? That’s quality.' That’s the only time that I someone suggested I do a verse over."

On working with other producers other than Exile and Alchemist.
“I’m not messing with other producers except Exile. I mean, if Lord Professor or DJ Premier give me a beat that’s a no brainer. I know what my sound is and over one of those beats I'll fit like a glove."

Favorite songs on The Ecology.
"My favorite record on the album is “Something To Believe In," with Nas.”

On recording "Something To Believe In."
"We were both in Europe and I got back in Paris before he did, and I had the song but I didn’t have the verse for it so before I got back to America me and Nas had a conversation that was at least three hours long. It was motivating. I left Europe with fire in my heart and soon as I got back to America I wrote the verse that you’re going to hear. We talked about so much stuff, hip-hop, good quality music, how to approach music, it was so much. His range of knowledge is so deep."

On what he wants fans to take away from this album.
“Walk away with this album with a new thirst for life, hope and belief that can do anything that they put their mind to.Live now, and and be happy with your life."

What Fashawn has learned about himself from recording The Ecology.
“I’m not perfect. I have ups and downs, I cry and laugh. I’m not made of steel. It’s deeper than music.”

The Ecology drops on Feb. 24th, and you can pre-order yours at Shop.massappeal.com.

Written by darryl @darryl_robertson

While you wait on The Ecology to drop, stream Boy Meets World below.

From the Web

More on Vibe

H.E.R. Brings All-Star Medley To Tiny Desk Set

Grammy-nominated singer H.E.R. appeared on NPR's "Tiny Desk" set on Dec. 12, to deliver a 4-piece-medley from her last four projects.

Tucked neatly behind her dark sunglasses, the songstress began her set strapped to a mustard yellow guitar with a host of back-up musicians accompanying the 21-year-old on her first solo journey with "Tiny Desk." She previously appeared on the performance series in June 2018 alongside collaborator Daniel Caesar to bring their single "Best Part" to life.

The singer began with "Going (Interlude)," a low-tempo song ushering a heavy-hearted feel into the 18-minute-performance. Keeping with the melancholy vibes planted by the first single, Gabriella Wilson – best known by her three-letter-moniker –  delivered a stunning rendition of "Feel A Way." With two-final transitions, the singer-songwriter concluded her act with "Focus," a throw back from the 2017 EP that gained her worldwide recognition, H.E.R. Volume 1.

Switching from strings to keys, Wilson sat peacefully before a keyboard playing the melody she crafted for the crowd favorite. Chaperoning the performance to a close, Wilson and her background singers played a vocal game of tag as the band jazzed up the slow beats until the set officially wrapped.

Watch as H.E.R. rocks the "Tiny Desk" set in the video above.

Continue Reading
Getty Images

Cardi B To Join James Corden On A Forthcoming "Carpool Karaoke" Segment

Your rapper’s favorite rapper Cardi B is slated to make her debut on “Car Pool Karaoke” with James Corden, Billboard reports. The Late Late Show host teased the upcoming episode, which airs Monday (Dec.17) via Instagram along with a small schedule of the show’s upcoming guests.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Here’s what the next two weeks look like on the @latelateshow! Seeing the year out with a bang x x x

A post shared by James Corden (@j_corden) on Dec 10, 2018 at 5:17pm PST

In addition to the “Money” rapper, Amber Heard and Armie Hammer will also appear on the same episode. Corden is closing out the last leg of 2018 strong by having a slew of other prominent stars on the show on the last week before the program goes on break for the holidays. The likes of Gwen Stefani, RuPaul, Jennifer Lopez, Emily Blunt, Leah Remini, Lin-Manuel Miranda, among others will be featured on the show after Bardi’s Monday episode.

To say the least, we're sure the British talk show host and the newly minted Grammy-nominated rapper are going to have the time of their lives.

The 26-year-old's now estranged husband Offset, along with the other members of Migos were guests on the beloved show. Joining Corden as he drove through the streets of Los Angeles, the trio performed a slew of hits including "Walk It Talk It"  while also giving a nod of praise to past hits, including Whitney Houston's "Wanna Dance With Somebody."

With all the fun Migos had with Corden, we can only imagine what shenanigans James and Belcalis are going to get into.

READ MORE: Cardi B Buys Her Mother's House

Continue Reading

Usher Releases "Peace Sign" Video Off Of 'A' Project

Given Monday's (Dec. 10) debate about who's the king of R&B, one of the names that steadily popped up in the conversation has stepped onto the scene. In a visual promotion for his A soundscape, Usher released the video for "Peace Sign" alongside producer Zaytoven.

Previously, the pair hit the studio for an eight-track project that pays respect to their hometown of Atlanta, Georgia. It was surprise-released in October and effortlessly fuses ATL's aura on the soundscape. Now, the "Peace Sign" video puts that decision into cinematic motion.

"Atlanta offers a certain attitude and a sauce that I can't explain, and it is a little bit in 'No Limit,' it is a little bit in 'TNT.' I'm literally talking sh*t, man," he said in an interview with The Fader. "I'm popping sh*t that I haven't popped, like really ever. And that's what being in the moment creates. When you have months and months to think about it and you begin to analyze all the people who you need to think of and what you want this entire project to work out, you'll lose certain elements of your spontaneity an incredible culture that just happens in the moment. I didn't give that space. I really was honest with the feelings, I was honest with the conversation and I was really in the moment. And I thank Zay for that."

Watch the video up top.

READ MORE: Tyrese, Usher And Others Reacts To Jacquees' Claim That He's The King Of R&B

Continue Reading

Top Stories