As one of founders and godfathers of the Memphis rap scene, Juicy J has been making the 808s bump long before Kanye and tore the club up with crunk anthems many moons before Lil Jon. Yet, well over a decade into his career, Juicy is still proving to be a driving force in the Southern Hip-Hop movement, I was a little worried at first about sales with everything going digital now, but I realized that if you continue to create a certain level of quality music the people will buy it. It cant just be one hot song on a 15 track album. Thats what separates 3 6 Mafia from the rest., says Juicy J from his home studio in Memphis.
With Juicy Js second solo here, deemed Hustle till I Die, all the jitters and nervousness are things that the Juicemans all to accustom too. Getting his start by as a member of one of the most influential hip hops groups to rise from the United States southern regions, Three 6 Mafia helped set the blueprint that many of todays d-boys and trap boys are using to rule Billboard charts. The group’s legacy may be represented by an Academy Award to the masses, but true Hip Hop Junkies and down south rap aficionados know that Juicy J and Three 6 Mafia are the dons of crunktastic Hip-Hop music. AllHipHop.com got a brief chance to chop it up with the Juiceman on short break from recording in his hometown.
AllHipHop.com: Your first single samples the OJays track Darlin Darlin Baby, for some it may be hard to grasp the idea of Juicy J and OJays together
Juicy J: Im just a fan of all old school music, man. All I do is stay in the studio all day making beats and playing with records and the OJays are one of my all time favorite groups, so I knew one day I had to flip one of their tracks, they’re just too pimpin.
AllHipHop.com: Long time Three 6 Mafia fam Project Pat, and ATLs current shining star Gucci Mane are also featured on the track, was it your idea to link up with Gucci?
Juicy J: Well, I talked to Gucci a couple days before he got out of jail and he told he wanted me to come down to ATL and produce some tracks for his album when he came home. And sure enough right when he got out, he flew me out and just vibed out in the studio for a few days. Man, Gucci is hard worker and knows exactly what he wants out of a track.
AllHipHop.com: Hustle till I Die is the title for your new solo album which is pretty self explanatory, and by now Three 6 Mafia fans know what to expect. What chapter is this in the Juiceman legacy?
Juicy J: This is classic album, man. I really out did myself with this album, I was completely focused and back to my roots in my hometown. It some of that old Three 6 Mafia, that you’re used to hearing. Weve been putting out albums all the time on the independent tip. People may not always realize we are always working on the music, it never stops.
AllHipHop.com: Speaking of the independent game, the last Three 6 record was on a major. Hows every going with Hypnotize Minds in the digital area?
Juicy J: My album is still coming out on Hypnotize Minds and were still continuing on with business. Our marketing and promotion plans havent changed too much. A lot of times people forget that we been doin this independent game since the beginning. Straight cash in my pocket, I did a couple of straight to youtube videos and we hitting the road again.
AllHipHop.com: So it looks like it going to be a long summer ahead of you
Juicy J: Im going across country hitting every single bar, every strip club in the country. (laughs) Thats my promo tour! Man, Im just going to stay working and having a good damn time while Im at it.
AllHipHop.com: Also youre brother Project Pat recently moved some respectable units independently, what position do you play in his career?
Juicy J: Man, Im proud of that boy every day, he makes so proud and hes actually a year older than me. I got his back 100%, growing up my momma always told us no matter yall boys have to stick together, no matter what. We always together in this, side by side no matter whether it is in life or this music business. What I have is his and whatever he has is mine.
AllHipHop.com: Its been about five years since the Academy Award and MTV reality show. Do you miss the limelight?
Juicy J: You just gotta keep hustling, everybody has ups and downs- thats just life. We still doing our music and loving what we do, man. If one door aint open, I jus t find another one. Three 6 has always done what we wanted to do, we never been the type to wait for people to call us. This is our business, and thats the making the music. Just give me a few shots of patron or goose, and point me to the studio (laughs). You just got to listen to this new album, I got Gucci Mane, Webbie, Gorilla Zoe, and this new artist out of Memphis who is hotter than a muthafucka right now named V Slash, so just go cop that and you wont be disappointed.
Juicy J – “Ugh Ugh Ugh”
Juicy J – “Violent”