Three 6 Mafia: How High

What’s more American than rugged individualism, ambition, drugs, popular culture and the aggressive pursuit of happiness? The Three Six Mafia represents the good, the bad and the most illicit residue of stateside culture. But that’s what makes the team of Juicy J, DJ Paul and others like Crunchy Black so interesting…we can live vicariously through […]

What’s more American than rugged individualism, ambition, drugs, popular culture and the aggressive pursuit of happiness? The Three Six Mafia represents the good, the bad and the most illicit residue of stateside culture. But that’s what makes the team of Juicy J, DJ Paul and others like Crunchy Black so interesting…we can live vicariously through them without endangering our own existence. Although Juicy J and Crunchy were in the room, DJ Paul gave up the goods on those G-Unit rumors, drug use, their crunk production and the transition from Memphis to movies. So, there’s been some talk of your camp aligning with G-Unit…

Paul: No, they’re people. I mean we do a lot with them, like we do some stuff. Of course, I respect the label. We got a lot of respect for G-Unit and they bring other type music that we bring out, you know, gangsta s**t, so it would be a cool move, ‘cause they probably can promote us a little better than some people can, but, no, we didn’t sign nothing or nothing like that, though. Oh, okay, so, you know, did 50 Cent approach you guys?

Paul: We had been talking to Sha Money XL a lot. He came at us about doing production for Buck’s album. Then I kinda ran back into him at the party at his house. Then we were just talking, and we just got to talking like that, and that was it. Speaking on production, you guys to me, are like some of the most underrated producers in the game. I really like y’all’s style, especially, yeah, it’s hardcore, but sometimes gets spooky, you know, sometimes you get the laid back style. Like what’s on your mind when y’all doing it?

Paul: Depending on what kind of mood we in, we do all different type s**t. The artist might be looking for or what we might be looking for, and we just made the track to kinda go around it. All right, so first of all, you know, I thought the first Choices movie was nothing short of a classic. Without question, even behind like so-called ‘hood classic. I think it was like a real good movie. Can you explain what this one’s about?

Paul: It’s about a man in the future, like a colored DEA agent that knew about all this stuff that went on in part one, and plus a robbery that we pull at the beginning of part two… Okay, okay.

Paul: And we set him up with some, with two of the largest drug dealers in Memphis, and we just, you know, we just set all of ‘em up with each other and just kinda like get the hell on out of the ourself. Okay, okay. That’s cool. How, like what role did you guys play? Were you guys the producers or the writers?

Paul: We wrote it. We wrote it with a friend of ours. We wrote the screenplay and wrote it with a friend of ours, and we executive produced it and co-produced it, scored it, until we got the two lead roles. And you guys hope to break into the mainstream movies? ‘Cause I mean this is obviously, you know, a good look; but sometimes you can get some more money out of Hollywood.

Paul: Yeah, we actually got a small part in our first Hollywood film, Hustle & Flow by John Singleton and everything. We also did some score music in it and wrote some songs for the lead actor. The director is Craig Brewer and John Singleton produced it. Yeah, I heard about that. Ludacris is in that, right?

Paul: Yeah. All right, so can you speak on the new albums you got coming up?

Paul: The new album is called The Most Known Unknowns. And it’ll come out like the second week of October ’05. [We called it that] ‘cause like Three Six Mafia got a lot of hits and did a lot of s**t, but it’s like they don’t really get the recognition. And then like a lot of people don’t even know that we sing some of the songs, just a lot of gang of hits from way back in the years. No doubt. Now, on that same note, a lot of people, you know, kinda recognize like Lil Jon as the, you know, like the originator of the Crunk sound or whatever, but a lot of people feel that you guys started it, and maybe others ran with it. How do you feel about that?

Paul: I mean we—I really don’t care, man, you know, it’s, you know, it’s enough money I have for everybody. You know, he was doing his thing, and, you know, we was doing our thing and who did it first, s**t, nobody know. Yeah.

Paul: I know we been doing it since 1990, so… Yeah, yeah, so you’re not looking for credit or nothing. I mean I know it’s money involved, but I mean as far as recognition, it kinda seems to play into the title of the album.

Paul: That’s, you know, I ain’t really in it for the fame, anyway. But didn’t nobody know how I live, how I look. Yeah, yeah.

Paul: Give me the money and then I could be straight. I don’t really care about the fame. I don’t even think I could take that much fame as Lil Jon got anyway. I’ve been on overdosing some s**t. Yeah, yeah, it’s pretty, you know, I’m sure it’s hard to deal with sometimes.

Paul: Yeah, I like that. There’s a lot of s**t I like to do that, you know, a person as big as some of these n***as, I couldn’t do. Like I like to take my kids to Universal, Disneyland, go fishing, do different s**t like that, and, man, I can’t do that if we get too popular. Yeah, I hear that. That’s for sure. Now what about, you know, you know, there’s been like some people have left the group recently, and not so recently. What happened with the whole La’Chat thing? Like she—I didn’t even know she left till I saw a couple ads in the magazine.

Paul: Yeah, a lot of people wanna go on their own and do their own thing and, you know, we let ‘em do that. And then, you know, they do it, and, if it work out, cool. If it don’t, then, you know, that’s on them, but there ain’t no coming back once you leave. Yeah.

Paul: That’s it, but, you know, I put it just like they do that. That goes for like all of ‘em, La’Chat and all of ‘em. A lot of people like to do their own thing, and, you know, there ain’t nothing wrong with it. They can do what they wanna do, and we gonna keep doing what we do. Yeah, yeah, so we won’t see y’all getting back with Gangsta Boo no time?

Paul: No. They brought a good, you know, the female side to the game a little bit.

Paul: Yeah, yeah, it was cool, but, you know, a lot of people had started doing it so much after Three Six Mafia was successful with the whole boy/girl thing, man, so many groups started doing, and it kinda wore me out anyway. I was kinda sick of seeing it, ‘cause everybody started putting girls in groups and s**t. I was like, ‘Hell with it,’ it was starting to look too much alike. That’s why every time when everything get too much alike, Three Six Mafia go completely to the other side. That’s what we’re doing with the next single. The next single, you know, after “Who I Is” and all, they’re gonna be Crunk. We’re gonna f**k ‘em out with this one, ‘cause it sound completely, completely different. Everybody raps about drugs. But you seem to really live it. How do you look at that?

Paul: Man, I don’t know, you know… s**t, we done it, live it. So n***as know how far to take it, though, it’s just like anything, man, you just gotta know how far to take it, and, you know, you can have a little fun and do it. I don’t, you know, provoke for nobody, use no drugs, whatever, ‘cause I’m gonna tell you now, if you haven’t did it, don’t do it. Yeah, yeah.

Paul: But, well, we just, you know, we get high a little bit. You know, to have a little fun with it, but, you know, got to know how to fly the ticket, and you can’t let it—you can’t let it control you. You gotta know how to control it. Yeah.

Paul: And, you know, you gotta know how to keep some money in your pocket, too, at the same time. That’s the main thing. That’s the main key. As long as you can keep some money in your pocket to put you a little something to the side every week to party with, you work hard, you deserve it. You know what I’m saying. Have you some fun with it. Right, right, so you—nobody there has any like addiction issues.

Paul: No, no, no, and, you know, everybody got something that they love, or something that they do. There ain’t nobody out here just completely clean, whether it’s weed, cocaine, but I know some n***as like girls. Right, right.

Paul: So everybody got something they like to do whether it’s drink, smoke cigarettes, or something, everybody got a little habit that they do. It goes back to the whole syrup thing…

Paul: Yeah, yeah, you know, n***asr just take it to another level. After a while you get bored with the same s**t, like I was saying earlier. They just take it to another level. We used to sniff the syrup straight up, but now, you know, n***a try to save a little money or something. Add a little Sprite or something, you get more out of it. You gotta make it last. I know you drop a lot of albums that we may not get. Do you still have that situation with the independent and the major thing like you still drop indie albums and stuff like that?

Paul: Yeah, we got the deal with select over here, so now indy stuff, and then we got a major indie deal through Warner Brothers. [That’s how] Lil Wyte came through, Any other business going on?

Paul: There’s movies, man. We got another movie. We made a comedy called The Cleanup Man. Oh, word?

Paul: It’s about two dudes that are working at a cleaners, and they go to make—pick up a package. Doing a pickup order, but they make a mistake and pick the wrong order… and what happens from there. Any final words?

Paul: Man, anything 3-6, gonna get it, ‘cause the DJ Paul and Juicy J production, so it’s gonna be solid, man. Anything with that s**t, snatch it.