(AllHipHop News) New York City emcee Stro is one of the Mass Appeal all-stars that contributed to the Starting 5: Vol. 1 compilation EP. The former X Factor contestant also dropped his own Nice 2 Meet You, Again in 2018*.*
The project's "Intro" included Stro rapping, "Tell L.A. Reid I ain't a pop star... I'm with Nas now." Nasir "Nas" Jones and Peter Bittenbender's Mass Appeal Records signed the artist formerly known as The Astronomical Kid in 2018.
Vibe caught up with Stro for an interview. The Q&A included the 22-year-old actor/musician explaining why he did not want to take the pop star route during his time at Epic under then-CEO Reid.
"I ain't mad at him. Of course, I'm glad it happened how it happened, but that's just not who I am. That’s just not the element I'm from, and that's not the story I came to tell," explained Stro. "That line wasn't nothin' too serious to me. It was just like, just off-the-rip I'ma let people know and I figured L.A. Reid will hear this one day. So I'm like, just let him know I ain't a pop star because that's not okay in the industry trying to force everybody into these boxes."
He continued, "And if you can't become what they think you are, then they say, 'Oh, you're not ready for the business.' Nah, that just isn’t my style. When the time is right it takes off, and I think the time is right now."
Stro went on to say he is modeling his career after Snoop Dogg, a 25-year rap veteran that has maintained longevity in a culture that often moves onto the next new thing fairly quickly. The Brooklynite also discussed how Nas endorsed his lyrical "soul food" style, and Stro praised Mass Appeal for their "genuine" support.
Back in 2017, AllHipHop spoke to Stro about potentially signing to another label. He said at the time, "It would have to be a fair deal. I’m not anti-major label. I’m anti-getting jerked. If somebody comes up to me with something that’s comfortable, I would definitely sign... I don’t want to be creatively jailed. I don’t want to have too many restrictions. It has to be the right type of relationship."