Pleasure P Interview
|Label:||Entertainment One Music|
|Next Project:||The Introduction of Marcus Cooper|
|Twitter:||Pleasure P on Twitter|
|Website:||Pleasure P's Website|
Listening public, meet Marcus Cooper. Though many knew Pleasure P as a key member of (and, some would say, the driving force behind) Pretty Ricky, the R&B/rap boy band who brought us hits like “On the Hotline” and “Grind With Me,” the Carol City, Florida singer/songwriter is much more than the smooth-talking ladies’ man these sultry, sometimes risqué jams would suggest—on his forthcoming solo debut, Pleasure peels back this facade to reveal himself as, well, a smooth-talking ladies’ man, but one with a preternaturally keen insight into matters of the heart, and a more mature, serious outlook than ever before.
With debut single “Did You Wrong,” a record addressing the necessity of forgiveness and compromise in long-term relationships, Pleasure gave fans a taste of the wisdom and depth he would showcase on The Introduction of Marcus Cooper (due out June 9th via Swagga Ent/Atlantic, but it was the follow-up, “Boyfriend #2,” that truly struck a chord with listeners nationwide, achieving chart success in the Booth and beyond and becoming one of R&B’s lyrical themes du jour (as well as spawning a Ludacris-featuring remix).
In an exclusive interview with our own DJ “Z,” Pleasure P steps into the Booth to discuss the personal and artistic growth he will bring to bear on his debut LP, the perks of being “Boyfriend #2,” and how he and his business partner, Cuda Love, plan to turn women of all shapes and sizes into incurable Jean Addicts.
Listen to the Interview
Pleasure P Interview Transcription
DJ Booth: What’s goin’ on, everybody? It’s your boy, “Z,” doin’ it real big, and joining me inside the DJ Booth is Mr. “Boyfriend #2.” Excitedly preparing for the release of his solo debut, The Introduction of Mr. Marcus Cooper, please wlecome Mr. Marcus Cooper himself, Pleasure P—how you doin’?
Pleasure P: I’m good, man, what’s goin’ on? Is everything cool?
DJ Booth: Everything’s cool, except for, as we already discussed in the pre-interview, you were hatin’ on my Bulls in the playoffs. Besides that, we’re good.
Pleasure P: The Bulls, man… it’s not fiction, it’s a fact that they lost. [laughs]
DJ Booth: No, you’re right, and I can’t argue that, but I will say this: the Celtics are going to lose to the Magic—book it!
Pleasure P: Nah, definitely not… but I really don’t know. I can’t say that, ‘cause I like the Magic ‘cause it’s a Florida team, too. I like both those teams, and I’ve got friends who play for both those teams, so, you know…
DJ Booth: In the press release for your new album, you’re quoted as saying, “they,” meaning the fans, “are going to get to know the real me.” So, was the Pleasure P that was a part of Pretty Ricky, that a lot of people, not the real you? Wanna explain yourself?
Pleasure P: The Pleasure P in Pretty Ricky was very quiet, he didn’t have a personality; they didn’t know who this guy was, you know what I mean? I’m a very serious person, I’m a businessman, I like to have fun at the same time as being serious, I’m a hard worker, I’m the father of a five-year-old son—that’s what it is.
DJ Booth: When people talk about your music, I often hear you referred to as, “Oh, it’s Pleasure P… formerly of Pretty Ricky.” So, how have you adjusted to being a solo artist, and, more importantly, has this adjustment been a difficult transition?
Pleasure P: I’m gonna say no. It wasn’t a big transition for me. I’m just actually doing my thing right now, know what I mean? It’s something that I’ve always dreamed of, and it’s not really a big transition; it’s just me actually bein’ myself.
DJ Booth: What did you learn as a member of a group that you have taken with you as you embark on this entirely different musical journey solo?
Pleasure P: I just learned the business, in itself. I learned how to deal with things and have patience in certain situations. And, really, I’ve become another person; I’ve become a totally different person.
DJ Booth: Would you say you like this “totally different person” a lot better now?
Pleasure P: Yes, I can definitely say I like this totally different person a lot better, ‘cause this totally different person has a lot of self-control, and he thinks on a business level all the time—that’s this new person.
DJ Booth: Would you say your confidence has also been boosted?
Pleasure P: My confidence has definitely been boosted a lot. Like, even [in regard to] the clothes that I wear: the clothes I wore then and the clothes I wear now. My confidence is definitely boosted.
DJ Booth: I wanna go back for a second. When you hooked up with the group and you guys started your journey together, was there always a thought in the back of your mind that, once the group achieved all that it could achieve as a group, that would be the time for you to split and do your thing solo?.
Pleasure P: No, it was something that happened because of the situations we were put in. It was nothing like, I didn’t wanna be in the group. The reason I’m not in the group is not because of the group; it’s because of the production companies, it’s because of a whole lot of things. But I don’t wanna spend my whole interview with you talkin’ about the past—I mean, the past is gone and I’ve got a new album comin’ out June 9th, it’s called The Introduction of Marcus Cooper. I just wanna stay on a positive note. Stuff like this, answering questions about the group and stuff, can sometimes turn negative, and I just wanna stay positive.
DJ Booth: Well, that’s not the direction we’re heading. We’re certainly done with those questions, but we had to get them out of the way. Let’s talk about your current single, “Boyfriend #2,” which can officially be described as a hit as it just reached #1 at urban radio. So, P, congratulations on that, my friend.
Pleasure P: Thank you very much, man. What we’re sayin’ in this record is, we’re not encouraging people to cheat; we’re tellin’ guys in particular you’ve just gotta step your game up if you wanna keep your woman. If you don’t, there’s somebody who [won’t] mind being the dude on the side—whatever you don’t do, another man will do. Don’t get comfortable in your relationship. A lot of guys get comfortable. A guy that’s not comfortable, he gives her flowers, he [asks], “Baby, how was your day?” when she comes home from school or work or whatever the case may be, and after they make love, he’ll hold her tight. Now, a guy that’s comfortable, he doesn’t give her flowers anymore, he doesn’t give her a greeting when she comes home, and after they make love he’ll sleep on the other side of the bed. So I’m just encouraging people in general to treat her like every date is the first time and the first date, know what I mean? Treat her like you care, show her that you care, ‘cause if [you don’t], there’s a lot of guys who feel like me, who don’t mind bein’ the dude on the side. And that goes into a person feeling like—you ever get the feeling of, you see a guy with a woman, and the woman is so wonderful, you just-
DJ Booth: You’re like, “Why is she with this guy?!” Absolutely. Have you been or are you currently a “Boyfriend #2,” and, if so, do you prefer that pinch-hitting role over a starting position?
Pleasure P: I prefer it because you don’t fuss, you don’t fight, you don’t argue. That’s just a better way to get to know somebody, when you’re “Boyfriend #2.”
DJ Booth: Absolutely, I agree. I need to find me a girl who’s being mistreated by a man and take advantage of that situation.
Pleasure P: Yeah, just take advantage of it, talk to her, get to know her, and you’ll probably find yourself bein’ closer with her than anybody ever. There’s a saying that if she’d do it to him, she’d to it to you, but we’re all human and nobody is perfect. A lot of people try to portray like they’re perfect in their head, but really they’re not, know what I mean?
DJ Booth: Absolutely. I think that’s what a lot of people really enjoy about this song, is its realness. A lot of songs, the average listener might think to themselves, “You know, that’s great, but that’ll never happen to me,” but this is something that happens to just about everybody.
Pleasure P: Yeah, it’s something that happens to just about everybody. A lot of people won’t say it, ‘cause they’re scared that they may look a certain way, but it is what it is. I’m gonna speak the truth, and that’s what you’re gonna get out of Pleasure P and out of this album. Even on my first single off the album, “I Did You Wrong,” there’s a message that I send out to people: I was just tellin’ people that the easiest thing to do in a relationship is to leave, you know what I mean? A lot of people leave their relationships over petty stuff and wonder why they’re single at the end of the day, and it’s because they’ve been petty [about] certain things that they could’ve just worked out. How do you think your Grandma and Granddad have been together for 20, 30, 40, 50 year? I mean, do you think your Grandma and Granddaddy haven’t cheated on each other, or done things outside the box? Sure they have! But they found a way to make [up] for it, and that’s what I’m sayin’ in the record.
DJ Booth: Well, one of the suggestions that you make is grabbin’ that camera and makin’ that movie—was this advice that my man Ray J gave you?
Pleasure P: Nah, Ray didn’t give me that advice, but shout-out to Ray J—great minds think alike, and [he’s] a good friend of mine as well.
DJ Booth: P, last year DJBooth.net featured your collaborative record with Lil Wayne, it was entitled “Rock Bottom.” I wanna know: have you ever hit rock bottom in a relationship?
Pleasure P: Definitely, I have hit rock bottom over a relationship. It was a girl that had me strung out. I did her wrong, I got really drunk because of it, I was feelin’ stressed out, found myself wakin’ up in the bathroom like, “What happened?!” The objective of my day was to get my girl back. So definitely.
DJ Booth: How did you get your girl back? How did you get from rock bottom back up to the top?
Pleasure P: Well, I sent her flowers and candy, I begged and pleaded and she finally figured out that she ain’t gonna find nobody better than me.
DJ Booth: Good! Well, P, in addition to your budding solo career, you’re also busy behind the scenes with your company, Jean Addicts, which you co-own. It seems like this music thing is gonna work out just fine for you, but, hypothetically, let’s say it didn’t—would you be happy working on a side business like Jean Addicts full-time?
Pleasure P: Definitely, I would love to do clothing full-time. I’ve got a niche with women, and women love me and I love the women, and I feel like there’s a connection, that I can make something and know that they’re gonna like it. And when they put the jeans on, and they all say, “I like how this fits!” and stuff like that, I get enjoyment out of that.
DJ Booth: I noticed on your Twitter that Jean Addicts is currently looking for some jean models. Now, P, if you need any help going through those portfolio entries, I would be happy to assist. I’d help you with the tight, toned, but slightly plump behinds—what are your favorites?
Pleasure P: All of ‘em! [laughs] This campaign is not gonna be the average campaign that you see, [with] polished models and stuff. Nah—we want some polished models, we want some hood models, we want some bigger girls, we want some skinnier girls. That’s the niche behind Jean Addicts: we’re creatin’ something for all the women that like to wear jeans. Anybody can wear this clothing; we go from size 0 to 16, and that’s what we’re steady stretchin’—that’s what we’re steady stressin’, I’m sorry. And the jeans do stretch as well. [laughs]
DJ Booth: [laughs]You’re makin’ all the female listeners real excited to know that your company, obviously, appeals to them no matter what size jean they like to wear.
Pleasure P: Yeah, we just want all of them to feel sexy when they’re wearing our products. And that’s the most important part, man; I get enjoyment out of that. A lot of women that I give the jeans to try ‘em, and a lot of people I send ‘em to, they love them and they can’t wait for them to come out, so I’m workin’ overtime on that, me and my partner, Cuda.
DJ Booth: Well, I’ll tell you what: when I find that special lady and I need a gift for her, I’m gonna give you a call and we’ll get her some jeans.
Pleasure P: Definitely!
DJ Booth: P, so far this year, the R&B landscape has been shaped by a wide variety of releases, including Ciara, Day26, you’ve got Keri Hilson, J. Holiday, Bobby V., Ryan Leslie—where do you feel you fit in amongst these trees of all different sizes and shapes?
Pleasure P: If you don’t see where I fit in, there’s something wrong with you! I’m in my own lane. You cant say that Pleasure P sounds like nobody—Pleasure P sounds like Pleasure P. When Pleasure P gets on a a record, he gets on a record, and that’s Pleasure P. What I talk about, and the kind of songs I bring, and my sound, I don’t sound like nobody out there! And the kind of songs that I’m making, don’t nobody make the kind of songs that I’m making.
DJ Booth: The title of the album is The Introduction of Marcus Cooper. Obviously introductions are very important, as we’ve discussed—even on a first date, that introduction is key—so how are you gonna make sure, with your solo debut, that you have many more dates to come with all of your fans and listeners?
Pleasure P: I’m just gonna keep givin’ ‘em good music, I’m gonna keep givin’ ‘em hits, I’m gonna keep givin’ ‘em me. [laughs] And they’re gonna like that, and they’re gonna keep on supportin’ and we’re gonna keep on movin like we’re movin’. I’m the underdog, as you can see, of the industry. People don’t expect me to do the things that I’m doin’ right now, they don’t expect this album—I’m like Dwayne Wade in the playoff game, you know what I mean? I’m that guy that’ll come out and score 40 points, and you’ll be like, “Where that came from?!” That’s me,
DJ Booth: Well, Dwayne Wade certainly made his mark on the NBA, and I have no doubt you’ll do the same in the music industry as a solo artist. P, give everybody a website or a MySpace page so they can find out more about you and, of course, the new album, out this Jnne.
Pleasure P: It’s myspace.com/pleasurepmyspace. You can follow me on Twitter, I be keeping up a lot of foolishness on Twitter, I’m @pleasurep. And you can log onto my official website, pleasurepmusic.com.
DJ Booth: That’s what it is! P, thank you so much for joining me inside the DJBooth, and I wish you nothing but the best of luck now through the future, my friend.
Pleasure P: All right, cool, man—I’ll holler at’cha!