“Is this a word? Keyboardist?” asked Rakim Meyers, better known by his stage name A$AP Rocky of the quickly budding Harlem collective A$AP Mob. “I’m getting ready for Coachella, and I’ve got a band with someone special.”
When questioned if it was Scott Storch (and whether if the noted producer was sober) Rocky replied with a laugh, “I don’t know if he’s sober, but I know he’s focused!”
Draped in a multi-colored, animal-patterned, puffy winter jacket—a gift from his friend, fashion designer Jeremy Scott—and donning a black fitted with A$AP written on its crown, the 23-year-old rapper displayed a welcoming charm that’s more sincere than media trained. With “Peso” and “Purple Swag” earning him a hefty 3-million-dollar deal with Sony, along with cosigns from Drake and Harlem’s own Jim Jones, the emerging star cuts a gaudy figure, favoring Japanese designer brands (Comme des Garçons and Neighborhood), golden grills, and Adidas Jeremy Scott Wings. He smiled frequently in speech, and talked with a gentle voice that’s playful yet observant.
Taking a late dinner break during the music video shoot of Swizz Beatz’s “Street Knock,” which features Rocky on a verse, the rapper/director sat down with XXL on a chilly Saturday evening in Brooklyn, where he discussed about his upcoming debut LongLiveA$AP, Harlem, and Iggy Azaela.
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