A$AP Ferg Asks People to "Get Up Off They Ass and Work"
The world got its first taste of Fergenstein on Live. Love. A$AP., the purple-tinged, codeine-soaked 2011 debut mixtape from New York newcomer A$AP Rocky. The tape ushered in Rocky as a breath of fresh air in the hip-hop game and introduced A$AP as not just a young collective of adventurous New York MCs, but a full-blown trilled-out lifestyle brand. On the track "Kissin' Pink," A$AP Mob member Ferg infused the tape with one of its most standout moments, a cheeky, Dirty South-flavored, half sung verse that left us wanting more.
Ozhora17 via Wikimedia Commons
Born Darold Ferguson, 25-year-old A$AP Ferg hails from Harlem, where his father used to design and sell his own clothing line to a crew of luminaries like Puff Daddy and Biggie. A hustler and renaissance man in his own right, when the self-proclaimed Hood Pope says his debut album Trap Lord will "change your life," he means it. While most MCs are hasty to put out a mixtape, Ferg and his crew are adamant about quality over quantity. Make no mistake; Trap Lord is a fully-formed powerhouse. He's making a name for himself with heavy-hitting anthems like "Work" and "Shabba," and is currently headlining a U.S. tour in support of this critically acclaimed debut.
Back in October, after a jam-packed day of interviews in anticipation of his first solo tour, Ferg chatted with us about his current fashion influences, his Trap Lord aspirations, and why the old beef with Miami's Raider Klan is "not even relevant."
New Times: Where are you right now?
A$AP Ferg: I'm in New York and it's so cold out here. I wish I was in Miami. I was just in Miami, too, for my birthday.
Happy belated birthday! What did you to do celebrate?
I had a couple club walk-throughs, club events out there. Just enjoying myself, taking a little vacation, havin' a few drinks out there, you know what I'm saying? Enjoying the beautiful sights.
Do you have any favorite Miami spots?
All of it. The beach is cool, the strip. A couple different hotels I gotta keep in disclosure. I like Miami.
You grew up in Harlem and you also shout out the Caribbean a lot in your music -- what's your background?
I'm Trinidadian. My grandfather's from Trinidad, my mother. And my father is from down South.
Can you tell me about your roots in fashion? Where does your style come from and what are you excited about right now?
I'm just excited that people don't have to wear jewelry with their clothes, you know, to make their clothes look expensive anymore. You can just wear like a white T-shirt, and you know, it's just the cut of your shirt that you can tell it's an expensive T-shirt. You know what I'm saying? I'm more into the cuts of fashion. Like people get more conservative with the way they dress, versus like wearing loud Versace prints all the time, things like that.
My fashion sense basically comes from my father, I guess, and other stuff that inspires me. Like rappers or, you know, Curt Cobain, Jimmy Hendrix, a bunch of different people. I got so much stuff flowin' through my mind right now I can't even name everybody, but, I get inspired by everything, movies, everybody.
You were working a bit in fashion before you moved into rap. Do you ever see yourself going back to that?
Yeah, definitely. I'm kinda still doing it. You know, I got the Trap Lord line that I'm doing. That's doing really good. I started out, you know, doing it to give back to my fans, but they started to love it so much that I started making more designs and really just putting some work in on it.
What kind of stuff is in the Trap Lord line?
It's T-shirts, hoodies. We got custom shorts that's like cut and distressed. We've got long-sleeve shirts, bandanas, everything.
You've called yourself an artistic person who's come to the rap game to take over. What other art forms could you see yourself taking over?
Some culinary arts, you know what I'm saying? For a beautiful lady.