Slim the Mobster Jumps “In the Mix” [DJBooth Interview Exclusive]
Say what you will about the endless wait for the Aftermath head honcho's third solo album, but Dre is still one of the most powerful cosigns in the hip-hop game. Just ask his latest protégé, Slim the Mobster. Though he has yet to release a project, all eyes have been on the Los Angeles representative since his addition to the West Coast legend's label roster. The material he's dropped in the time since, including "Get Your Money Up," the Snoop-assisted "What Goes Up" and Kedrick Lamar collab "Whose House?," has only increased his buzz among tuned-in heads. Now, Slim's preparing to make his official entrance onto the national scene with debut street album War Music, tentatively scheduled to hit our own mixtape page for free streaming and download November 8.
In this exclusive interview, Slim the Mobster steps into the Booth to discuss the importance of visuals in music promotion, his relationship with Booth-acclaimed cousin XV, and the extent of his contributions to the long-delayed Detox LP.
Your brand new mixtape, War Music, is set for release on November 8. What was your goal going into this project?
My goals were to establish myself as more of an artist than a writer.
What do you think your fans are looking forward to the most with this release?
I think the people are looking forward to me delivering some quality street music. I think that’s what the people want from me. I don’t partake in the creation of the corny rap that’s going on right now.
Several videos from this project have been serviced to all of the major blogs and websites. In this Internet age, how important is it to give fans visuals?
That’s a big part of it. That’s why you’re seeing the videos that you see right now. That’s why I’ve released songs already with Snoop Dogg and Kendrick Lamar. I’m doing these things for that exact reason.
Hip-Hop fans have been familiar with your name ever since Dr. Dre first mentioned your work during a radio interview, but you’ve been relatively quiet up until now. Why is now the time? Why not two years ago?
Who else’s time is it? There’s no better time than the present. In terms of why not two years ago, my focus was in other places at the time. I’d say I’m fully focused right now.
I am sure Booth-goers will be happy to hear that XV - a buzzing rapper out of Wichita, Kansas - is your cousin. Why haven’t we seen heard a collaboration from the two of you?
I taught him how to rap man. That’s my first cousin right there. Besides music, of course that’s my family. You’re definitely gonna’ get a collab between me and XV. I have another cousin that raps too – Mic Phenom. He’s big on the battle scene. I’m here to help him make the transition to songwriting.
Of late you've been mentioned in the same sentence as Kendrick Lamar, since both of you are Dr. Dre protégés. How would you describe your relationship with Kendrick?
We know a lot of the same people. I knew who he was before we both went under Dre. I look at Kendrick like my little brother and as an emcee; he’s hard on that mic.
In a recent interview, Dr. Dre (it seemed) intentionally didn't mention Detox. Instead, he was talking about a lot of the advertisement deals he has going on. Any status update on the project you can report on?
You see me right? Ok. That’s all I need to say. I’m gonna’ let the people figure that out. We’re here as a team for a reason right now.
How much writing have you done for Detox?
I don’t know how much writing I’ve done. I can only tell you that it’s a lot and that I’ll also appear vocally of course.
How would you describe the overall experience of working with Dr. Dre?
I don’t think they have a word for that yet. In the light of the experience that is working with Dr. Dre, it doesn’t have a definition yet. There was one track that leaked with me and Glasses Malone over a Dr. Dre beat. That track was called Motherf**kin’ Streets.
You’ve worked with a lot of producers outside of Dr. Dre – Nottz, Chocolate and DJ Silk to name a few. Has there been one producer in particular that you've vibed with the best?
My answer for that would have to be Eminem.
Because just on different occasions, I know that throughout the course of his day, he listens to my sh*t all day (laughs). That right there was big to me. I would see him and he’ll be singing one of my songs to me – that’s crazy. And its music that I haven’t even released yet, just something he’s had an opportunity to hear.
Any last words?
War Music drops November 8. Without a reasonable doubt, it will be here on that date. There were a lot of things I had to do to make it as classic as I could. Not just as a street album or mixtape, I want you to be in tune with me as a person so we had a lot of artwork created for the project. I’m gonna’ be in the places where most people don’t go and I’ll be handing out hard copies. I have a special exclusive t-shirt that I’m doing with Crooks & Castles. I have a lot of things that I’m doing with this project to make it memorable. It’s not gonna’ be just a regular mixtape because if you’ve been paying attention, there’s a lot of different things we’re doing like behind the scenes videos and what not. I’ve done so much work to make it something different to where it requires more attention than just putting out a mixtape. I wanted to make this big.