you speak on your new album?
Mannie: The title
if it is The Mind of Manny Fresh. That means the situation and things
that have been happening in my life. If I had to describe it, I would say it
is fun an escape from reality, an escape from the norm.
In your videos, you have a lot of humor, what made you take that approach?
Mannie: That is
just me. People want fun instead of the usual serious. Somebody needed to come
along with that.
Do you think this approach will affect your street credibility?
Mannie: I am not
a street dude. It is one thing to have a dress code the way you want, to make
a long story short I am neither a killer, nor a gangsta or street dude - I am
a business man. I am not trying to be something I am not, and I am not trying
to bring harm to anyone.
You rarely reflect on your personal life. Why?
Mannie: My story
is pretty much like everybody else’s. I never even knew I was from the
hood, or poor, and when you got that, you don’t pay attention to your
environment. Later on in your life, you might go back to the old neighborhood
and say, ‘This is what I grew up around.’ I grew up with both of
my parents, so I don’t have a bad story to tell like daddy wasn’t
there; so I am not going to pretend to be something I am not. I have been blessed
to have two parents that are still living and all my siblings. So it something
that I can’t write about or don’t even want to experience; in life
you go through things and like I said I have been blessed.
The topic of the father not being around, a tough life is becoming cliché.
Mannie: Yeah, I
think so. I always look at it like there is always two sided to a story. A lot
of people like to hear tragedy. But for the most part, there is some genuine
people that have grew up rough and got their break to do it. But then there
are some people who tell that story because that is what it is.
I know, irrelevant gully question, but have you ever been shot at or stabbed?
Mannie: No, but
I have been around that all my life, but I never paid attention to it. My worst
moment in life is when my young friends were dying. But when that is always
around you, you get immune to it; you shut your feelings down. Now that I am
older I think about it all the time; what I grew up around. But once you get
immune to something you think it is the norm.
So how does it feel to go from that to having so much money?
Mannie: Well, the
bottom line is, you have to be real with yourself because it really does not
matter what you have. The thing is being Black, that just don’t solve
anything. On one hand, it is good because if anything happens you can always
pay for it. But on the other hand, I have problems like everybody else. I might
be cool financially, but mentally, I still have my own things going on.
Mannie: Drama with
my baby momma, people start looking at you like money. People you never thought
like the people you grew up with, you thought was solid you become money to
them. So you never know who to trust and what is real.
Are you able to maintain a relationship with your friends and family? Could
you go to the family reunion and chill?
Mannie: Yeah, I
can go to the family reunion and chill. But there will always be somebody that
I don’t want to talk to. There is always going to be someone asking me
to lend me some money, even though it is not the proper time.
Musically, what is your background?
Mannie: I don’t
read music, I play by ear.
AllHipHop How did
you develop your style? What inspires you?
Mannie: I would
have to say it is inspired by the club I was a DJ, before I started doing this.
When I am writing a single, I think something that makes people move. Something
you don’t have to hear four times to get it, like right off the back -
you get it.
How do you feel about Cash Money?
Mannie: Cash Money
is at its best when it is in the dark. When people count us out, we dig ourselves
out of that hole. That is us. We have always been that way is why the music
industry can’t do nothing but respect us.
Juvenile signed a one-album deal and moved on, was their any beef?
Mannie: No, there
wasn’t any beef. I actually did songs on the album he is putting out on
Atlantic. It is business and most importantly growth; Juvenile has been with
Cash Money for a while and he just wanted to do his own thing. You can’t
get mad with a man that wants to do that. That is how I feel right now; I am
not the same person I use to be with a white shirt and Dickies on.
Do you have any business label aspirations?
Mannie: Right now,
I am in a bidding war as far as who wants to sign me for a production deal.
From there, my plan is in the next five years to be a president of a major company.
I think I have a good ear for music and a lot of stuff gets passed on. So that
is my plan.
Who is on the album production, features, etc?
Mannie: The only
people that I have on a track are, David banner, Bun B from UGK, Baby did a
verse. I really wanted the album to be me not a compilation of artist.
Before, you guys said that Big Tymers are not considered Hip-Hop artists, do
you still feel that way?
Mannie: To me,
Hip-Hop is a variety of things. I am Hip-Hop. Just do the homework, my first
record on wax was [in] ’87. You got cats talking about what is Hip-Hop,
I be like, ‘I was doing Hip-Hop when you were in pampers’.
What are your thoughts about the Rap game getting old, like everyone doing it
big is in the their late 20’s or 30’s?
are starving for good music, and that is the only ones who can give it to you
is the veterans. I hate to say it about young artists but there hasn’t
been someone who has grabbed us in the last five years...like that is the next
phenomenon or that dude is bad, so we kind of stuck with that is the only one
we can get good music from so we might as well keep ‘em. I’ll give
you a great example like… if we were to go to an old school concert, it
would be packed because people are starving for good music. People miss good
music, and right now is the best time for any old R&B artist, like Cash
Money and Tina Maria and it jumped off and nobody ever knew. It is the same
faces that is around Take Jay-Z for instance is 30 something, the rappers and
same companies have been around and when we try to sign new artist it is not
successful. You take Roc-A-Fella. They got a whole new roster, but it is not
making that buzz that Jay made. Same thing with Cash Money, we tried new artist
but they don’t have that buzz that Lil’ Wayne would make.
Lil’ Wayne has recently been making remarks about other artist, what do
you believe is the motive behind that?
Mannie: I think
he is a young fire-cracker. I am too old for that. You can’t really tell
Wayne is 21, me and him have nothing in common except for being in the studio
doing music. Me personally, I don’t get into beefs and all of that kind
of stuff, and I wish he wouldn't, but he is his own man.