Being the youngest pick of the litter doesn’t come without it’s challenges. Getting swept to the wayside can happen in a matter of weeks. It takes a certain audacity to run with the big dogs. Coming to the Maybach Music Group by the way of North Philly is Meek Mill, the youngest of the crew. At 23-years old, the straight-off-the block rapper encompasses a choppy flow with a lawless attitude and renegade spirit.
Currently, his records “I’m A Boss” and “Tupac Back,” which both feature his new ally Ricky Rozay, are currently getting burn across state lines. With the Net and streets riding with him, Meek’s contributions to ‘Self Made Vol.1’ have helped his crew reach top speed. On the eve of the album’s release Meek Milly phoned into VIBE to discuss his transition into Maybach Music, linking up with T.I. first and becoming top 5, dead or alive.
VIBE: Meek, it feels like your career really took off in the last 3-months. Do you feel like all eyes are finally on you?
Meek Mill: I just feel like, do me. I always had pressure on myself through my life. I put pressure on myself and not from other people. I always wanted to be one of the hottest rappers. So the pressure comes from myself.
Do you feel like you’re your own biggest critic?
I wouldn’t say my own biggest critic, I like a lot of the stuff I do, but sometimes I feel I can do better. If you don’t know where you make your mistakes, that’s your worst mistake, not knowing where your mistakes are at.
Outside of Philly, a lot of Maybach fans might have not heard of your name before, what do you think was your first big break in music?
My first big break was “In My Bag.” I had a song in Philly called “In My Bag,” it’s like a saying that everybody says, like if you fresh “you in your bag” or if you mad “you in your bag” or if you’re feeling yourself today “you’re in your bag.” Cosmic Kev one of the biggest DJs in Philly and the Tri-State area (Delaware, New Jersey) started playing it and when I was going to clubs it started coming on in clubs and the reaction in the club used to be crazy.
Who was the first big Philly rapper to show you love?
The first big Philly rapper was Oschino, then it was Young Chris, Gillie, then Cassidy, then everybody else came in down the line.
After you got you hot and were blowing up with the Flamerz mixtapes, you met T.I. and he was interested in signing you. Can you tell us about that situation?
That was the first platinum artist that was interested. Him, and my manager were friends and my manager went to LA to meet him. I gave him my Flamerz 1 mixtape and he was feeling the joint. But really the situation didn’t work out between him and my manager.
After that, you went through a rough patch and ended up serving some time in jail. Was that a factor at all in the deal with T.I. not materializing
I had cases and that was another thing that slowed the deal down too. We had charges at the same time, I was in jail when he was coming out, when I was out of jail, he was going in. We ended up getting cool and when we got a chance to meet up, and we found we were going through the same things in life. We never got a chance to talk about rap we talked about the things we were going through at the same time. A lot of the time we were in L.A. we talked about life, not trying to make hit records, just life.
Have you had a chance to visit T.I. on this trip up?
Nah, I’m a felon so you can’t go see other felons in prison like that. He was supposed to call me about a month ago, but you know they shut down the phones whenever they want. I need to holla at him though.
As you were doing your bid, were you contemplating your next move, did you have any thoughts of not going back to rap and doing something else?
When I got locked up it made me go harder [rapping]. I was losing at the drug game, early in the game, if I start off losing I think should change my hustle from that. So when I came home I was like ‘I’ma put my life into this rapping.’ All the stuff people talk about in raps, I’ve done it before, was in, around it. I’m talking about things I’ve experienced. I’m giving it to the young boys so they can know and won’t have to experience it. A lot of times I talk money now because that’s what I’m living now.
That showed on your first real big remix with “Rosé Red (Remix).” How did you manage to get Ross and T.I. on that?
I had a song called “Make Em Say” and the same producer that made “Make Em Say” took that apar and turned that into a new beat. I had a regular “Rose Red” that was poppin off. Then I got T.I.P. to lay a verse, Vado, Rick Ross laid a verse on it. I actually got Ross on it through Twitter. I said I need Ross on that Rosé Red (Remix). I got the whole Philly to RT it.
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