A$AP Rocky might just be following the footsteps of hip hop mogul, Jay Z. Really he is, it’s not far-fetched. Although he is still a relatively new artist, he is making noise as a rapper, fashion lover and businessman.
In Sept. 2015 news broke about his collaboration with Guess for a new collection, which launches this Thurs., Jan. 14. Now you can see A$AP Rocky on the cover of Forbes.
In an interview with Zack O’Malley Greenburg A$AP Rocky talked about Harlem’s fashion influence, expanding into artist management and his evolution from ghetto hipster to businessman.
ZOG: There’s something to Harlem that style is a really important thing in a way that it isn’t in other parts. People who aren’t from New York don’t get it. They don’t understand why Harlem is different from Brooklyn. Harlem and Brooklyn couldn’t be more different.
Rocky: When it comes to fashion and stuff, we’re just nostalgic. Harlem, from the Renaissance, from music, everything cultural, I think it’s impactful to an urban community on another level. … We had our own fashion sense. You’ve got music, you’ve got culture, you’ve got food. What I think is incredible about Harlem is that no matter who you are coming out of Harlem you just feel like somebody.
ZOG: Tell me too about your expanding into artist management.
A$AP Rocky: The first artist that I signed was, the first personality that I signed was Ian Connor … I noticed that his influence on Tumblr and on the internet doing streetwear fashion. Being the face for it, he was the king of the youth. … I’m working with artists and businessmen and it’s kind of cool, and this business brings me money. I kind of like this world of signing thing.
ZOG: My colleague Natalie Robehmed interviewed you a couple years ago for Forbes, and you told her that you felt you were a ghetto hipster. Does that still hold true?
Rocky: I would have to say I’m an artist and businessman. I think that’s where I stand. I’m happy to be here, that’s what I would say. … I did it from my own bedroom, Zack. I tell these kids, you can definitely do it just as good. If you’ve got some good shit, whatever you do, pursue that shit. … The only advice we had was, “Want to run around, make a quick 20, a quick hundred?” You want to pull big money and get that shot, man. That’s what we see: football, basketball, baseball, or f**king rapping. That’s why more people more people know the difference between rappers and artists, true artists. I’m going to classify the way I’m going to be, I’m going to dress, I’m going to be. I want to be considered who I am and that’s a genuine do-it-yourself artist. … Make more money, try to grow as a businessman, it’s that simple.
Read the full interview here.