05th Aug2017

A$AP Twelvyy Interview with Complex

by @Djordje

Jamel “ASAP Twelvyy” Phillips was, along with ASAP Yams, one of the founders of the ASAP Mob, the crew that’s taken over its hometown of NYC, and much of the world as well. With the solo stardoms of ASAP Rocky and ASAP Ferg firmly established, it’s Twelvyy’s turn.

Twelvyy’s brand-new album 12 paints a picture of his life growing up in Harlem and then in the Castle Hill (or “Castle Hell,” as the opening song has it) section of the Bronx, finding his crew, and the triumphs and tragedies that occurred along the way—the most notable of the which is Yams’ death in 2015. His loss permeates the album.

I sat down with Twelvyy, 28, at the Complex office to get an idea of how the album came to be—and what a certain cold-remedy-inspired viral hit had to do with anything.

Continue reading on Complex.

25th Jul2017

Marty Baller Shares His Sneaker Rotation with Nice Kicks

by @Djordje

If you’ve seen Marty Baller live you know he lives in the moment, but make no mistake he has big plans. “I can’t wait to go to Paris on October 6th, my birthday. I’m gonna shop ’til I drop out there,” the Harlem native says excitedly. Energetic and fashionable, the A$AP affiliate has been staying busy making his own moves and his own music with an international tour booked and visions of turn-up already imaged. “Off the new tape I would love to play ‘First Quarter’ live. I need the whole big stage, the lights, the band. It’s gonna be a movie and I need everybody out there interacting.”

Catching up with Marty prior to his tour and on the heels of the release of his Baller Nation mixtape, we found out which kicks of his are getting the most burn these days for the latest My 5.

Continue reading on Nice Kicks.

23rd Jul2017

A$AP Ferg Interview with Billboard

by @Djordje

Above all else, A$AP Ferg is an artist. Though he splits his time between creating critically-acclaimed music and fashion design, Ferg’s creativity developed from an early age in drawing and painting. “I was a young artistic kid, but I didn’t know how to channel my powers,” Ferg tells Billboard. “The thing about fashion is that I got a chance to wear my art like a walking canvas.”

Growing up in Harlem, A$AP Ferg (born Darold Ferguson, Jr.) learned about style from one of the neighborhood’s most memorable tastemakers: his father. Known as D Ferg, he owned a popular boutique, created custom silk-printed t-shirts, and even designed a logo for Diddy’s label Bad Boy Entertainment. “He was basically a pioneer, an innovator,” Ferg explains. “Since he was the underdog and he was up against all these big companies, he had to create something to draw people to his work. He put magic into whatever he created.”

Following in his late father’s footsteps, A$AP Ferg already has a range of accomplishments well beyond his 28 years. As part of the A$AP Mob, he’s released two studio albums —2013’s Trap Lord and last year’s Always Strive and Prosper. In 2012, he launched his own fashion line, Trap Lord, and has collaborated with brands like Bape, Young & Reckless, Adidas, the sustainable, socially conscious label Uniform, and Citizens of Humanity’s denim offshoot AGOLDE. He’s even ventured into home goods with Fancy.

Because of the success from his first AGOLDE spring 2016 capsule collection, Ferg is back with another line for fall. The twelve-piece collection, which ranges from $58 to $350 in price and is available for pre-launch at TheWebster.com, includes outerwear, graphic tees, a tracksuits, five different jeans, and is entirely unisex. Billboard Style caught up with A$AP Ferg between his travels for Future’s Nobody Safe Tour and studio time for his forthcoming project Still Striving to discuss the process behind such a fruitful designing career.

You studied fashion design in art school. Did that prepare you for eventually launching your own brand, or was there a lot of learning-as-you-go in the industry?

It definitely prepared me. I took a sewing class and learned how hard it is to actually sew and how much time it takes. So, I knew that I didn’t want to produce the clothes myself. But it taught me the know-how. I actually love to draw the designs and come up with the concepts. It taught me what I love and taught me my passions. It sharpened my talent.

I took two internships as well. I interned at Rocawear and Artful Dodger, which are both owned by JAY-Z. I also took an internship with Sean John early on. I was a kid just figuring it out, making my own contacts and connecting the dots.

Who are some of your style influences?

David Bowie, Grace Jones, Missy Elliot, Busta Rhymes, Puff Daddy, Kanye West, Ralph Lauren, Pharrell, DMX. And my dad, of course.All of these guys, they definitely did a lot of self-evaluating and they searched real deep in themselves to find something original. Or, it just came naturally and they trust themselves to just be original. A lot of people don’t trust themselves to know that the world will like what they’re doing.

Continue reading on Billboard.

23rd Jul2017

A$AP Ferg Talks New AGOLDE Denim Capsule with W Magazine

by @Djordje

The 28-year-old rapper A$AP Ferg is perhaps best known as a member of the notorious New York rap group, the A$AP Mob, with his own hit singles like “Shabba” and “New Level,” as well as his most recent album, East Coast, which dropped this spring. And while he and his peers like A$AP Rocky have publicly demonstrated their love for high-fashion designers like Raf Simons as well as a knack for successful brand collaborations, Ferg in particular is dead serious about his side-hustle as a designer and style savant.

Since January 2016, A$AP Ferg and the Los Angeles-based denim brand AGOLDE have been bridging East and West with collaborative capsule collections, the second of which will be available at The Webster on July 20th and AGOLDE.com starting July 27th. The lookbook was shot with Ferg’s longtime friends on his home turf of Hamilton Heights in Harlem, New York, which is where he called W magazine from one afternoon this summer.

What are some of your regular Harlem spots?
Red Rooster is one of my favorite spots in Harlem, and Melba’s is another restaurant I go to. It’s great place for food, culture, drinks, and lounges are really big.

Has growing up in Harlem influenced your style?
Yes, Harlem gave me a lot of sauce—that’s what we call it. It gave me confidence; we were taught to walk with our heads up. If we were broke, you couldn’t tell. We were very good at hiding the fact that we were poor people because we dressed so nicely.

This is your second collection for Agolde. How did you first get involved?
I was linked with them through Scott Lipps, who is a good friend of mine. I was able to come in and basically be an intern for a week. I worked nine-to-five just learning; it wasn’t glamorous at all. It was denim-making 101, from different zippers to washes. I got to meet all the employees and they showed me laser machines you could only get in Turkey, tumbler machines that use rocks to make jeans look more worn, sandblasters—I was like a kid in a candy store.

Continue reading on W Magazine.

25th Jun2017

(Video) Playboi Carti XXL Freshman Interview & Freestyle

by @Djordje

Playboi Carti opens up about his music and movement in this 2017 XXL Freshman interview.

25th Jun2017

A$AP Ferg Interview with Zane Lowe on Beats1

by @Djordje

A$AP Ferg talks about his forthcoming project Still Striving and the story behind “Tango.” Stream below.

19th Jun2017

A$AP Twelvyy Interview with Mass Appeal

by @Djordje

Don’t refer to A$AP Twelvyy as just a rapper. There’s way more to him than that. An entrepreneur may be a better term, but that’s probably still an understatement. With plans of evolving his Last Year Being Broke brand into a Fortune 500 company, Twelvyy tells us what’s next for him and the A$AP Mob. We also talked about other important things like Spiderman and basketball. Check it out below and learn why it’s his, mine and hopefully even your last year being broke.

Do you remember the day you had the epiphany like, “This is it, my last year being broke, first year being rich”?

The day I had the epiphany was my last studio session with A$AP Yams. My final studio session with him I made the song “Last Year Being Broke” and it just grew from there. You know my brother had just passed away like a month later. It took me like eight months to really push it, but he was gone so I needed something to push me. I needed something to motivate me. He was a huge inspiration and motivation, I just needed something to get me doing stuff.

That’s dope because now a lot of people are taking LYBB and using it to push themselves. Something that helped you is helping other people. I always see you retweet these kids with “LYBB” on their graduation caps or as their senior quote. That has to make you feel a way that something you created and helped you in the past is having such a big impact on other people.

Yeah, it’s surreal to see because it wasn’t a financial thing, it was really like a mental thing. Just to see across the board that no matter what—financially, mentally, socially, every realm of life you can be broken in—just to grab yourself and be like, “Nah, I’m gonna take control of my life. I’m gonna take control of my friends’ lives, my family”. That’s the motivation. Because I know we could all do better. We could all be our best. No reason why we all can’t be president, the best player, the MVP. I feel like the universe breaks us down and it gives us rules and boundaries that we can’t do this shit. I’m telling you we can do this. This is the last year that you letting somebody tell you bullshit. LYBB stands for numerous things. Last year having boundaries, last year being bullied, last year being blackmailed, last year being blackballed.

Continue reading on Mass Appeal.

15th Jun2017

A$AP K Interview with Culture Trip

by @Djordje

“Style is not meant to be defined,” says Kamoni Chandler aka A$AP K. “Definition transforms style to trends. Once traits are identifiable, they can be easily reproduced. Reproduction makes style bland.” So goes the ideological argument against fast fashion that independent designers have been making about street wear and high fashion alike. This New York designer was born and raised uptown, and as part of the A$AP Rocky crew, positions himself as part of a collective that uses fashion as a way to forge community.

“The first person I met was Rocky. A$AP wasn’t a thing yet. Rocky and Ricky (my cousin) are best friends; we were all kids together uptown. You know, we were 14-year-olds into Gucci and Fendi, but in the neighborhood kids would say, ‘you’re not as fly as Rocky,’” indicating it’s not just the label you wear, but how you wear it. At the time I sit down with Chandler, A$AP Rocky has starred in Dior Homme campaigns for two seasons. It has become popular for luxury brands like Gucci and Louis Vuitton to partner with influential street wear sites Highsnobiety and Hypebeast to reach a millennial audience. But luxury brands showing an appreciation for street wear is a relatively new phenomenon (take, for example, the Louis Vuitton x Supreme SS17 collaboration), making the relationship between street and high fashion more dynamic and symbiotic.

Continue reading on Culture Trip.

05th Jun2017

A$AP Ferg Talks Home Goods Collaboration With Fancy, ‘Still Striving’ Album & Tour With Future

by @Djordje

A$AP Ferg always had plans bigger than music. Despite achieving stardom with his blistering raps, the Harlem rapper has been eyeing ways to expand his Trap Lord brand.

After traveling to Liberia to provide school outfits for kids through his collaboration with Uniform, Ferg (born Darold D. Brown Ferguson Jr.) recently joined forces with Fancy to sell home goods. While the “New Level” MC relishes piecing together ensembles, he’s opened up his empire to sell welcome mats, clocks, and scented candles. On Thursday (June 1), the multi-faceted star will welcome fans at his pop-up shop in Harlem, where he remodeled the space to resemble his childhood apartment.

Musically, Ferg is working on his Still Striving album, which follows his sophomore effort, 2016’s Always Strive and Propser. Last month, he also dropped his star-studded video for “East Coast,” featuring Remy Ma. Since then, he’s been gallivanting around the country with Migos and Tory Lanez for Future’s Nobody Safe Tour.

In the midst of the madness, Ferg hopped on the phone with Billboard to speak on his new collaboration with Fancy, touring with Future, where he stands with his new project Still Striving, and if he believes rompers have a place in hip-hop.

Continue reading on Billboard.

01st Jun2017

A$AP Ferg’s New Home Goods Collection Is Inspired by the Spice Girls and Ralph Lauren

by @Djordje

A$AP Ferg is known for his collaborative streak. In addition to myriad musical collaborators like Missy Elliott and Remy Ma, Ferg has also worked with top-flight brands like adidas and Uniform on various apparel and merchandise collections. Fergenstein’s latest collaboration with Fancy is yet another extension of his Traplord brand, this time venturing into the realm of home goods; that means NIGHT:SHIFT bedding, clocks, bean-bag chairs, welcome mats and even a scented candle.

And what does an A$AP Ferg scented candle smell like? “Oud and crushed roses,” says the Harlem rapper. “It’s masculine,” he adds, “but in a good way.”

HYPEBEAST caught up with the Harlem renaissance man to talk collaboration, inspiration and what’s next for the Traplord.

First and foremost, how did this collaboration with Fancy come about?

It all started when we found out the founder of Fancy was a fan of my music, and he had seen that I was doing artwork and fashion, so we found a way to collaborate with one another. So we did the Traplord rug and that took off almost immediately. After that, we jumped on a new direction, which was doing more home goods: candles, pillows, comforter sets, clocks, different things that you could put in your office or your home.

You’ve collaborated with everyone from adidas to AGOLDE, and now Fancy. Does your creative process change, depending on the medium?

Nah, nothing has changed. It’s still us all getting together and conversing—it all comes from a conversation first, and then we bring it to fruition. It’s pretty much the same.

The pop-up space is modeled after your own apartment; what will that look like and how did you go about replicating your space?

To start off, we’re doing it in uptown Harlem, so the location, first and foremost. People don’t usually go to Harlem, so they’ll already feel like they’re going to my house. The idea actually came from me wanting to do a listening party at my mother’s crib—the crib I grew up in. We wanted to do something similar to that for this pop-up shop. To make it a little more home-y, a little more intimate. We tried to replicate exactly how my apartment was growing up. It’s gonna be a mixture of things, but for the most part it’s gonna include the Traplord pieces we designed for the space. Quilts, candles, bean bags and clocks.

Continue reading on HYPEBEAST.

30th May2017

(Video) SXSW 2017: Digital Revolution with A$AP Ferg, Residente, Charles Attal & More

by @Djordje

This session, a collaboration with Billboard and VEVO, discusses how technology’s rapid evolution has changed the entire music landscape: from how an artist produces and creates music, to how it’s distributed (streaming platforms) and monetized, to ultimately how a fan consumes and experiences it.

Via SXSW.

23rd May2017

(Video) Rhythm Roulette: A$AP P on the Boards

by @DomingoTutu

“Hopefully I don’t get no bullshit,” says A$AP P on the Boards just before tying on the red bandana for the latest edition of Rhythm Roulette. One of the go-to beatsmiths for the A$AP Mob, P on the Boards was the man behind such Mob bangers as “Bath Salt” featuring Flatbush Zombies. His most recent work can be heard on the P on the DRGS project.

After roaming blindly through the bins at Academy Records, P came up with Red Crayola’s abstract art rock album Malefactor Ade. The Aussie prog rock of Paternoster and QPSM Project featuring David Durah. Not the usual suspects to say the least.

After a dab of inspiration, P got down to work. He had high hopes for Red Crayola’s “Baby Jesus Frog” based on the title, but revised his opinion post needle drop. He soon found a few suitable loops—ill interstellar outer-space shit, mostly—and got to chopping. Will he achieve his stated goal of cooking up six beats in one session? Only time will tell.

“Shouts out to MASS APPEAL for letting me get the opportunity finally,” said P in closing, offering a few words of inspiration to up and coming producers: “It went from me watching this shit, to y’all watching this shit now. So keep doin’ it!” Check the creative juices flowing up top…

Via Mass Appeal.

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