On Black Friday, the one day of the year where people fought to find the best bargains, R&B singer Tank gave away the gift of music absolutely free. Tank’s new mixtape, Diary of a Mad Man is a raw and uncensored musical journal that gives listeners a glimpse inside the mind of an R&B star. The women, the love and lust, his swag, and frustrations are chronicled throughout the 10-track banger. Tank leaves it all on the table with this one.
In an exclusive interview with AllHipHop.com, Tank talks openly about what fueled Diary of a Mad Man, being a ‘Twitter head’, and his disappointment with being snubbed by the Grammys.
AllHipHop.com: Let’s talk about Diary of a Mad Man. What inspired you to release it?
Tank: It was definitely an opportunity for me to put out a different side of me without any pressure attached to it. You know, without the $9.99 price tag, having to recoup a budget, or having to sell a certain amount of records the first week to be considered successful. Diary of a Mad Man didn’t have any of that. It’s just some good music. It’s a different character and an opportunity for me to offer that to my fans or soon-to-be fans. I grabbed some songs that had been out before on the more aggressive side that were stolen and leaked from my aggressive album. I also made some new songs and put them all together to make that Diary.
AllHipHop.com: Diary of a Mad Man definitely shows another side of you many aren’t used to seeing.
Tank: I got some stuff off of my chest. I said some things that I wanted to say, not the way I’d normally say it, but it’s a mixtape. I’m gonna say it the way I want to say it. I’m gonna cuss a lil bit too! Sh*t! I’m gonna let you feel it. People appreciate the rawness of it. It’s just me being me.
AllHipHop.com: Mixtapes were more prevalent in the Hip Hop community. Why do you think more R&B artists are going the mixtape route?
Tank: There are several different ways artists benefit from mixtapes. It allows you to get out of the box and it allows you to sing in a way that may influence a different fan base. Also, we’re in a very content-driven industry right now. The more people have on you, hear from you, and know you the better off you are. People are trying to forget you.
These things keep your name and your brand out there continually flowing while you’re in between budgets and campaigns. You have blog sites you can still talk to and filter information and music to. It’s everybody’s way to staying a part of the music industry.
AllHipHop.com: One of the standout songs from Diary of a Mad Man is ‘Stars Girl.’ It reminds me of Amber Rose.
Tank: (bursts into laughter) You’re hilarious!
AllHipHop.com: Diary of a Mad Man is a very solid project. It feels like it should be sold in stores.
Tank: I’ve heard that and it’s like I don’t know how to do music any other way. If we’re not going to put something good together whether we are giving it away for free or doubling up the price on it, it still has to be quality music. There’s no “throw away music” around here. I’m trying to win with every record.
AllHipHop.com: Congratulations on your amazing and soul-stirring rendition of “I Can’t Make You Love Me” from your last LP, Now or Never.
Tank: Thank you. I was so mad. I wanted to get nominated for that song. Nobody nominated me. I’m like ‘C’mon guys, you can’t nominate at least one song?’ Whatever…it’s all good.
AllHipHop.com: You also write and produce for other artists. Outside of your own projects, who do you enjoy working with the most?
Tank: I loved working with Chris [Brown]. That was awesome. Working with him from one year to the next and just watching his growth from a kid to the monster that he is was great. Being an inspiration to him and helping in that sense was just exciting to me. Being able to be a part of a project, kinda like the engine that helps it run and the backbone behind it is always great.
AllHipHop.com: I know you’re on Twitter because I’m a Twitter head. On a few occasions, I’ve seen you get busy in those Twitter streets.
Tank: I’m a Twitter head too. (@TheRealTank) But, listen if you say something to me I’m going to say something back. I’m a human being. I’m a person. When you start talking reckless about my music…that’s my livelihood. That’s how I feed my kids. You just ain’t gonna get that off! Sometimes I get calls from Atlantic Records late at night like ‘If you don’t shut up!’ But, sometimes I take that stuff personally, man. I’m gonna talk. If you want to say something to me, no problem. I got something for you!
Hands down, Diary of a Mad Man is one of the best R&B mixtapes to drop this year. Tank’s strong vocals, edgy lyrical content, and infectious tracks create a triple threat no music fan can resist. As an added treat, Diary of a Mad Man offers guest appearances by Ace Hood, Slim Thug, Kevin McCall, and more.
Contributor: Xaviera (@MsXaviB)