Slim Thug is the absolute embodiment of the hustler mentality. Not only does he tell you that he sees Hip-Hop only as a means of getting cash, he actually out-hustles those who steps in his realm and eats better than most off the land that he cultivates. The Houston native loves his cash more than he loves his fame, but he is destined to have an endless supply of both.
Having done more than most on the independent circuit, Slim Thug has signed an exclusive deal with The Neptunes’ Star Trak label and is preparing his debut solo album, Already Platinum, which basically describes his lifestyle to a tee. His independent hustle with The Boss Hogg Outlawz has afforded him the lavish life, now it is time for Slim Thug to reach higher heights. In a recent conversation with Allhiphop.com, he describes what he wants to those higher heights to be.
Allhiphop.com: You have already kicked in many doors in the Houston area, and it is time to kick in those same doors nationally. Give us a description of who Slim Thug is and what you are all about.
Slim Thug: Well, Slim Thug is the name and Boss Hogg Outlawz is my label. I started out independent in 1998 doing the Screw mixtapes with Michael Watts down here in Houston. That s**t been taking off since then. I’ve been doing this s**t since I was 17, and I just turned twenty-four not too long ago. I’ve been doing it independent until now. We’ve been grinding it out for years down there, making a lot of money independent. People were offering me deals, but I wasn’t interested really. I’ve done all I can do independently, and now it’s time to make that major move. At the same time, with my deal I can still do independent s**t. When I go around the world and let everybody know about Slim Thug, I’m [also] going to let them know about Boyz N Blue, which is my clique.
Allhiphop.com: In your opinion, does the independent money stretch out a little further than the major label up front money?
Slim Thug: It depends on what you compare it to. Being independent, you really have to have your company together. What’s different about being independent now [as opposed to] back then, we had a place called Southwest Wholesales. They used to be right in the city, and they were a distribution company. You could go right down the street and holler at these people, get your money and they would send your s**t out everywhere. They shut down, so now you got to go to Tennessee and f**k with those people, and you really can’t keep your eye on what they are doing. When that was going on, it was lovely because you could drop a record right now, and in four or five months drop another record. You can sell 100,000 records independent at $7.00 a pop, that $700,000 right there. You see your money faster and you have control over when you want to drop. You are not going to be as famous as you would be if you were on a major because you are not going to have the power of Interscope or another label like that. But, around your parts, you will be able to make a lot of noise.
Allhiphop.com: Does money or fame make more sense to you as an artist?
Slim Thug: Dollars! I would have kept s**t independent if we had that Southwest Wholesales s**t still going or whatever. [Labels] offered me deals in 2000, so it ain’t like this is my first deal and I took it. The labels in L.A. and New York had been flying out to Houston, flying me to L.A. and New York for years now. They just labeled me as being impossible to sign. They knew I was making money, and what I was going to ask for was ridiculous. When you get a taste of that big money, you be like, “fuck that s**t”! But like I said, I did everything I could do independently. I’ve been all around these markets. It’s almost like I was at a stand still and I wanted to see my s**t go further.
Allhiphop.com: How does it feel now that you do not have to be at the swap spots and selling records out of the back of your trunk?
Slim Thug: Please believe that I will be at the motherf***ing gas station in my Bentley if a n***a wants to buy my CD. If I got my CD and if he wants to buy, he can buy it.
Allhiphop.com: Talk about this new release, Already Platinum, and the story behind you initially hooking up with the Neptunes.
Slim Thug: Let me explain what Already Platinum means. I feel like I’m doing platinum s**t right now. These n***as have sold a million records and f**k around and have the same size house as me. I’ve been doing shit like platinum rappers out here in Houston and in my state for a couple of years now. That’s why I say I’m already platinum because I’m already eating like that. When they were flying me out all these times to see different labels, a dude that worked for Universal seen what I was doing but he couldn’t get me signed. I built a relationship with him and we kicked it. When people would come to Houston, he would send them my way to meet me. Pharrell came out and I took them n***as out, kicked it and s**t. When I went to Puerto Rico, we met up with each other and we just kept bumping into each other. I did something with Fam-Lay, another one of his artists, and he liked that s**t. When I signed with Interscope/Geffen, he came over there and heard I was there. So, Pharrell was like, “let’s do it,” and Jimmy (Iovine) felt the same way. If a n***a got a buzz, why not make it bigger and put a super producer with him?
Allhiphop.com: Since your particular deal is structured so that you can still make independent records, how does it feel to have major label money on one side and potential independent wealth on the other?
Slim Thug: I’m in a hell of a position right now. It’s my job to take advantage of it to the fullest. Whatever they say I need to do, it’s done. I’m a hustler, so there ain’t no question. Right now, this is the hustle that’s sticking out the most. I do real estate s**t, I’m working on a car lot out here, I got CD and tape stores…I’m just an all-around hustler. This just happens to be the biggest one going on for me right now.
Allhiphop.com: How many of your local brethren did you go and tap for any of your projects?
Slim Thug: I did a record with Lil’ Keke; we had an independent record that did pretty good. I did one with ESG also, so people know me. Like I said, I never dropped a solo record because I didn’t want to do it unless it was going to be big, big, big! I just did some featuring, keeping myself hot, and doing mixtapes and records with people like Keke. Right now, I’m trying to give people me because they never had that besides on mixtapes. I’m not going to have too many features on my s**t because I want this to be me.