CardoGotWings Says Payroll Giovanni Is The “Jay-Z of Detroit”

Payroll Giovanni - Photo Credit: Jerry PHD

AllHipHop caught up with both Payroll and Cardo with the former located in Detroit and the latter in Dallas, Texas. 

Nowadays more than ever, the Detroit hip-hop scene has been making its way into the music industry. 

Detroit natives Payroll Giovanni, and famed producer CardoGotWings teamed up for their newest project titled Another Day Another Dollar. Clocking in at 10 tracks, the raw and uncut album serves as their 3rd project together, with features from Larry June, Tamara Jewel, and Smitty Soul.

Following their previous collaborative tapes, Big Bossin’ Vol. 1 and Big Bossin’ Vol. 2, it appears Payroll and Cardo are the dynamic duo. With Cardo producing Gold and Platinum singles such as Drake’s “God’s Plan,” Travis Scott’s “Goosebumps,” and ScHoolboy Q’s “That Part,” his ability to make beats specific to the artist is unmatched. 

With Payroll not letting up in the slightest with his relentless bars, witty punchlines, and vivid storytelling, the new release has fans in a frenzy.

Read below as we discuss how Payroll Giovanni and CardoGotWings initially linked, their love for each other’s craft, the making of Another Day Another Dollar, their creative process, studio essentials, and more!

AllHipHop: How did you guys meet initially and when was it?

Payroll: Cardo reached out to me online, was it through email? 

Cardo: Yeah it was email. Remember I got your number from Carbon, and you didn’t believe it was me.

AllHipHop: Why didn’t you believe it was him?

Payroll: I know dude works. I’m like “this ain’t Cardo, who is this?” I gave him my number to a phone I didn’t really care about, he ended up hitting me up. It was him. He sent me a beat pack, rest was history. 

AllHipHop: Detroit has a nice little wave right now. Cardo, what did you like about Payroll that made you want to work with him?

Cardo: I like Payroll’s style. He’s unique with wordplay. His storytelling was vivid, you could see what he’s trying to present. It made me gravitate more towards his music and getting to know who he was. Man, I gotta work with this kid. Carbon put it together. He thought it was a random dude trying to hit him up with some s###, trying to scam him. [laughs] Fast forward to within 30 days, we’re in Atlanta working on me, him, YG, and Young Jeezy’s tape which was called Paid in Full, produced mostly entirely by me, DJ Quik, Dez.

Payroll: Warren G was on there.

Cardo: Warren G was on it! It was a groovy ass tape man. We’re so excited because it was different. Somebody lost the harddrive and the rest was history from then. We said “f### it, what we doing then?” A week after we left, he said “man, let’s keep it going.” Because we had found a bounce. 

Payroll: We found our pocket with the music, it took a minute. 

AllHipHop: Why did it take a minute?

Payroll: I’ll be honest, I was used to rapping off the Detroit beats. The fast, uptempo, gritty type beats. Cardo was really coming with that industry, polished sound. I didn’t feel natural on them type of beats but once we did the West Coast, G-funk type beats, we hit it off right there. G-funk and Detroit have similar sounds, a lot of sounds with Detroit and the Bay are real similar.

AllHipHop: What sets you apart from the other Detroit artists?

Payroll: I stick to myself. I stay true to myself, do what I know how to do. I stay in my lane. I don’t really jump on no waves or nothing. I really ain’t got a formula, it’s really however I feel.

AllHipHop: How long have you been grinding for? You’re independent, right? 

Payroll: Yeah, independent. I’ve been messing with the music seriously since about 2010. I love it. If you stay true to yourself and do what you do, over time it’s going to catch on. It really took us a minute to even get noticed outside of Detroit. We didn’t start getting noticed until 4 or 5 years in the game. Thing is if you keep it going and do you, it’s gon’ work.

AllHipHop: Another Day Another Dollar out now. What‘re you guys most excited for? 

Cardo: Really us keeping the sound alive that we’ve been doing, that we’ve been presenting. Coming from me and him, people expect me to give him the usual stuff I give the Drake’s and Kendrick’s, because I give them specific beats to them specific artists. When I work with Payroll, I give him a specific sound I know that’s his sound, that he molded. We try to keep that sound going, but we elevate every time we put something together. It’s always something fly we do or something elegant. We try to reach them levels. This one of them projects that shows the elevation of the sound, where we’re going and the bounce of it. We keeping it alive, it’s a little bit more of a swing into it. Gio can tell you more than I can ’cause he’s the actual artist.

Payroll: For me, I be saying stuff on there that I want people to hear. I want us to see what’s going to be the reaction to this. I’m giving little gems here and there to change people’s mindset on certain things. I like to see the way they receive it, and the lines that stand out. That’s the benefit for me.

AllHipHop: Who came up with the title?

Payroll: We both did.

Cardo: We both did ’cause we had a song originally called “Another Day Another Dollar.” We’re plotting like “what could we call this next project?” We kept on going through titles back and forth. It’s what we usually do when we try to figure something out, like the concept of a project. He sent me the song, I’m like “that’s what we call it. We call it Another

Day Another Dollar.” He said “yeah!” It stuck from there.

Payroll: It was perfect.

AllHipHop: How was it creating? Was there any COVID restrictions?

Cardo: It was all done over the internet. From Big Bossin’, Vol. 1 to Vol. 2, we’ve done most of it basically via email. Me and Payroll been in the studio a lot before, but we be in there talking. We do a couple ideas. The end of Big Bossin’ Vol. 2, we ended up finishing together. Most of the project was done through the email. It’s something we know, we adjusted to. We already knew how to do it, how to move when the quarantine stuff hit. We already knew how to make it shake.

Payroll: We looked up and had 10 songs, a complete body of work. Oh, this is it right here!

Cardo: Yeah ’cause I was sending him beats, something I like that’s him. We like to put out good Spring, Summertime, even Fall — we always have the Fall stuff ready, but we felt like Spring and Summer was the most important part of presenting the sound. Especially with this music that me and Payroll do, you know, it motivates you to get up and hustle, get that car or whatever it is that you’re trying to accomplish. Whatever girl you trying to get.

Payroll: Need a good soundtrack to shine.

Cardo: You definitely do. Gotta get your shine on, word to Big Tymers. 

AllHipHop: What’s the story behind “Always Hustling”?

Payroll: I had a banging hangover when I made that song. I did it and sent it to Cardo. I didn’t hear back from Cardo, I thought “oh it must be trash, I don’t even care about it.”

Cardo: Nah the way he goes in, it was so cold. Damn, made me want to throw on some silk. That sound we be trying to do, we be trying to make it feel like how we grew up listening to music, our favorite artists. The whole Sick Wid’ It to everything going on in the Detroit music scene, we try to blend all that in and make it all in one so we can feel the same we felt when we’re younger. That’s all it is: feel-good, hustling, motivation music. You can’t deny it, not at all.

That’s one of my favorite beats, my boy J Franks produced that one with me out in Mississippi. It’s one of them sounds. If people listen to Mr. Mike and the whole Suave House days, all the 8Ball and MJG, the new mix and all that, they’ll understand that sound. That sound was Mob sound, near to the Bay and Detroit. Same thing with “Mob $hit,” we had to get our good brother Larry June on there to do some numbers with us. That’s somebody we always been f###### with. We put out the Game Related project early last year. 

Payroll: Larry sent that verse back immediately. Larry sent that back quick. 

Cardo: Yeah ’cause it was necessary. Soon as you hear that s###: “ahhh, eh eh, eh.” [Larry June voice] It makes you feel good, makes you want to eat an orange and hustle. We want to provide feel-good music. That’s the beauty of it, it makes you feel some kind of way.

AllHipHop: Cardo, I know you do all of Larry June’s s###, I’m from the Bay! 

Cardo: Yadidamean, I be thizzing out here. [laughs] Come on man, rest in peace Mac Dre.

AllHipHop: What songs mean the most to you guys and why?

Cardo: Me, I like “Forever Flow.” I love when Gio be talking his s###. I tell him “man you gotta talk yo s###. Rap yo s### man, do what you do. Do what Gio knows best, give them that hustle music.” He’ll go in, he’ll excelerate every time. Every time!

Payroll: “Forever Flow” for me too. That’s my favorite.

Cardo: I’m telling you, that s### heartfelt. You feel that s###: the beat, everything.

Payroll: My grandma out on there.

Cardo: That’s rare! Thanks Grandma.

AllHipHop: Cardo how’d you get your producer tag: “Cardo got Wannnggsss”? 

Cardo: My boy Johnny Juliano, one of my closest friends and business partners, he used to do tags. I asked “yo, can you make me a tag?” He said “yeah.” He sent it right back to me: “Cardo got Wannnggsss.” Yup, that’s it. Ever since then, I started using it. I stopped using it, I’ll bring it back out then I’ll stop. I have my periods where I use my tags. Sometimes, I like to move mysteriously where people ask, “you produced that?!” 

AllHipHop: How did “Laugh Now Cry Later” came about?

Cardo: Man, I was working with the boy for some time. Right around when quarantine started, we started working on his project, going back and forth with ideas. Around July, he sent me the idea first. He said “man, can we make this bounce?” Alright bet. Me and my cousin Yung Exclusive, we made it bounce. Did what we did, sent it back to him. Next two weeks, it came right out. Just like that, so quick. Damn, alright cool.” I get the message, that boy don’t stop. He don’t play. Shout out to the n*gga Drake man. 

AllHipHop: 3 things you guys need in the studio at all times?

Payroll: I need water. I like for it to be me and the engineer, I don’t like a crowd of people. Clear it out, I don’t like people in and out of the studio. Water, clear space, I’m straight. [laughs]

Cardo: 100 %. Me, I need water, fruit…

Payroll: Good fruit. [laughs]

Cardo: Good fresh fruit. We talking about red, sparkling red. Them strawberries just grew today, they picked them m############ out today. Fresh fresh fruit. That and a good good choice of food, restaurants too. That’s a requirement. Runners, they’ll bring a menu for some wings s###. Man, that ain’t gonna do it for me. Other than that, I have to have Mary Jane. That’s it.

AllHipHop: When y’all come to LA, I got weed for you guys.

Cardo: We good. Gio don’t smoke. Gio doesn’t believe in smoking, he’s just “I just drink champagne!” Both: [laughs]


AllHipHop: How do you guys plan on Bossin’ Up in 2021?

Cardo: With Volume 3.

Payroll: Volume 3!

Cardo: I had to Gio, he thought I was bullshitting. The pressure’s on brother.

Payroll: Big Bossin’ Vol. 3. We bringing 3.

Cardo: Me and Gio, we’re inseparable. That’s my brother, I always try to keep him in the mix of things and keep him afloat. I know he’s a businessman. He’s a big time tycoon, entrepreneur out here doing his thing. I be honestly trying to bring back down to earth with his music. It’s a beautiful thing every time we do something music-wise alone. People feel the impact of what we present and that right there, we wouldn’t trade that the world. It’s lovely to see the fans react to the music we do. The testimonials and the hardships about everything, you feel that effect. Damn, my music’s really inspiring y’all to get it together, do this or do that.

I be telling Payroll everytime, they deadass serious. They really follow our music like it’s guidelines to this s###, to hustling. It really is. Payroll, he’s a motivational speaker. He ain’t no rapper, he’s a motivational speaker. He’ll tell you some s###, it’ll make you really think and get your s### together. This n#### taught me about willpower. My own homeboy teaching about willpower, I’ll learn the most about that from him. Once I learned that, everything got better. I stacked my bread up even more, started to get my priorities together ’cause I was listening to my brother. I listen to everything he gon say. Everything he preaches about, he practices all that s###. That’s real talk. To me, my own personal preference, he’s the Jay-Z of Detroit to me. He’s the voice out there. Shout out to everybody doing their thing: Ray, Dez, Kid, all them, the whole 26. Payroll’s my brother so I’m not saying it because I’m biased. For real, that’s what he is to Detroit. That’s my personal preference, that’s it.

Payroll: Appreciate it my brother.

Cardo: Come on man, you know I’m going to war about you.

AllHipHop: Payroll, what you got to say about Cardo?

Cardo: “Cardo man? This n*gga crazy.” [laughs]

Payroll: Cardo the GOAT man. I watched dude put in a hella work, It feels good to see it pay off. That s### was unreal. Grammy nominated with Drake! I was just in the raggedy-ass studio with him. Damn, we be in the small studio together.

Cardo: On God, just a year before that in a s##### ass studio. They did us dirty bro, but now we bossed up from that. That was a lesson lesson, we ain’t ever gonna go through that b####### no more. Came away with that, straight up.

Payroll: Cardo motivation man, he keeps me going. He’ll hit me up like “where you at? Let’s make some music, come on.”

Cardo: On God, I’ll bug his ass too.

Payroll: I get right back to it. Sometimes, I’ll be needing to hear that. 

Cardo: Bro what’re you doing? I know you living life. N*gga be on the yacht, in the backyard sipping wine with all these wine testers. Man, I get it. You living life like it’s golden, like Jill Scott. I understand my man. Bruh, come on! Let’s make some music too bro. I know you like golfing, getting your feet in the sand, in the water. Come on bro, I ain’t stupid. I know.

Payroll: On God, this us every day though.

AllHipHop: Payroll, how’d it feel to have Nipsey Hussle shout you out on “Deep Reverence”?

Payroll: It was dope to hear him shout me out, it’s an honor to be one of the artists out of Detroit he rocked with. We had a smooth relationship. Whenever he hit Detroit, he’d hit me up and ask about different places to shop. I linked with him at a show he had in the city, we all popped Dom P and had an epic time. It’s one of my favorite moments.