28th Apr2016

A$AP Ferg Interview with Dazed

by @Djordje

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On the cover of A$AP Ferg’s second album Always Strive and Prosper, the Harlem rapper is draped in white linen, falling into a dark body of water. The artwork, realized by designer Renell Medrano, carries captivating themes of baptism and rebirth. Ferg developed his creative senses through visual arts school and has always embraced the grittiness of his New York heritage in his music, style, and attitude, but as his success grows, his focus is more so now to inspire and educate others by sharing these collected experiences. The new Ferg is familiar, but it’s an enlightened version of himself: a beaconing figure inviting his disciples into the most intimate corners of his kingdom.

“It represents a new me,” Ferg says when we sit down just before the kick-off of his album listening party in NYC’s SoHo adidas store. “I was Trap Lord, and I graduated to the Hood Pope because I travelled the world. I’m older, I’m wiser. Now I can come back to preach to my people.”

Part of Ferg’s storytelling capitalizes on the importance of varied perspective. Included on the tracklist of Always Strive and Prosper are names from all walks of life, joined together under Ferg’s leadership. Think: Future and ScHoolboy Q, Chuck D and Missy Elliott, Lil Uzi Vert and Marty Baller, Ferg’s grandmother and the mother of the late A$AP Yams. As Ferg explains, all of these people have touched his artistic outlook in some shape or form. “I feel like, in a way, all of these voices, these people, these fabrics, makes the cloth that I’m made of.”

And while he was simply paying homage to their influences by recruiting them onto his project, Ferg is simultaneously marking a landmark in modern hip hop culture. He put OGs in the same rooms as the up-and-comers, he brought together his long-time colleagues to celebrate a shared passion for music, he put his dearest family members on songs with his heroes. While he’s not the first to tell his personal story through a varied perspective, in a genre that’s becoming increasingly cut-and-paste and welcoming of imitators, we need these moments of unexpected togetherness in rap. Without them, the culture not only becomes regurgitated and static, but we also lose sight of hip hop’s familial values.

And as The Hood Pope preaches his self-written gospels, taking us on the journey of his rebirth through the sonic and visual components of Always Strive and Prosper, he’s also planting his staff in an important cultural moment, proving the power of perspective in front of all of his successors.

Continue reading on Dazed.

28th Apr2016

(Video) A$AP Ferg – DJ Self Freestyle

by @Djordje

A$AP Ferg drops a freestyle for DJ Self while on his recent promo run. Check it out above.

28th Apr2016

(Video) A$AP Ferg Interview with The Breakfast Club

by @Djordje

A$AP Ferg dropped by The Breakfast Club to discuss his sophomore album Always Strive and Prosper. This time around he is more personal than before. His background is in art and fashion and he was used to playing behind the scenes, he was forced to the forefront once his music career took off and he had to get used to it. Now he realizes that you have to open up all of yourself to the fans.

Via The Breakfast Club.

27th Apr2016

A$AP Ferg ‘Always Strive And Prosper’ Best Buy Bundle

by @Djordje

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Get 2 exclusive songs when you get A$AP Ferg’s new album Always Strive And Prosper at Best Buy. Click here to purchase.

27th Apr2016

(Video) A$AP Ferg Interview on Ebro in the Morning

by @Djordje

A$AP Ferg walked up to Hot 97 to have a conversation about his brand new album, how he feels he’s going as an artist, and more with Ebro in the Morning.

The rapper spoke about the support for his album, where he claims he does a lot of the footwork of most of his work.

Catch him on the Summer Jam stadium stage June 5 at MetLife Stadium get tickets on Ticketmaster. His album Always Strive & Prosper is available now.

Via Hot97.

27th Apr2016

Can A$AP Ferg Be His Generation’s Next Great Visionary?

by @Djordje

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A$AP Ferg is tucked in the back of the Crosby Bar at New York’s Crosby Hotel, and he’s feeling under the weather. He’s wearing an inside out sweatshirt with “PSYCHO” emblazoned on the front, made by his uncle (the “Psycho” on his latest album), along with Adidas track pants and a pair of his Trap Lord x Adi Ease kicks from his Adidas collection. A packed press schedule is stopping him from getting better, but he’s in good spirits eating poached salmon with quinoa and sweet potatoes, while sipping on a glass of Riesling. I casually recite Kanye West’s “beasting off the Riesling” line and Ferg perks up a bit. “Kanye’s so funny because I’m just hearing from madd different sources, like he must’ve been jamming the songs I put out ‘cause he went on Twitter and said he loves my album,” he says with a warm smile. “I heard from somebody that’s working with him in Germany that Kanye said I’m his favorite artist.” Despite being arguably at the top of his game, things like that still mean something to A$AP Ferg.

Born Darold Ferguson Jr., Ferg was raised on 143rd Street between Amsterdam and Broadway in Harlem’s Hamilton Heights (“Hungry Ham,” if you ask him). His father designed both the Bad Boy Records logo and Andre Harrell’s logo among others, which infused fashion into Ferg at a young age. His start-up clothing line Devoni Clothing had artists like Chris Brown and Swizz Beatz rocking his belts long before Ferg even touched a microphone. His ascension as part of A$AP Mob was swift—some may argue that it derived from a tight grip on Rocky’s coattails, though now Ferg has carved his own niche in the game.

A$AP Ferg is like a levelheaded Kanye West. He has huge dreams, and gets animated as he discusses his AGOLDE denim capsule collection with Citizens For All Humanity, designed after the jeans from his “Work” video. He wants to do more fashion and film, but hopes to reach a place where he can readily receive the capital to do it all (sound familiar?). He says the glitz and glamour of fame don’t faze him—and while he rocks his name on a diamond-encrusted ring that spans the length of four knuckles, he views it as a piece of art over a proof of purchase.

Continue reading on Noisey.

26th Apr2016

Pitchfork Reviews A$AP Ferg’s ‘Always Strive And Prosper’

by @Djordje

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When they first came on the scene, A$AP Ferg and A$AP Rocky offered two very different perspectives on rap’s new Harlem. In Rocky’s case, he brought a strong sense of fashion, with musical branches extending to Houston and Atlanta. Ferg stayed with the conventions of trap music, though his cadence and lyricism diverted from the genre’s formulaic sound. And just like that, the Trap Lord was born. His debut was aptly titled, full of chest-beating cuts that suggested Ferg was artsier than Rocky and slightly more overbearing—the Kanye to his Jay. But what happens when you’ve run out of superlatives for yourself and self-reflection kicks in? Well, you work in reverse, which is exactly where Ferg resides on his follow-up project Always Strive and Prosper. If Ferg secured a strong group of followers off Trap Lord, then his new album will surely lock them down as a cult.

An argument could be made that ASAP is the prequel to Trap Lord, where we’re finally understanding the Bruce Wayne before the Batman. But the underlying self-awareness suggests that Ferg has tasted fame and rejected the poisonous parts. The opener “Rebirth” makes that declaration in no uncertain terms. Over a joint production effort of DJ Khalil and Clams Casino, a chopped-and-screwed Ferg talks to himself: “Now that you’re no longer a lord that’s trapped/ You have graduated to the Hood Pope/ You have made it to represent your people/ Show them another way/ Be the voice of the people who couldn’t make it out the hood.”

Continue reading on Pitchfork.

26th Apr2016

A$AP Ferg Is Ready to Tell the Truth About A$AP Ferg

by @Djordje

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A$AP Ferg is not who you he think he is.

On paper, the Harlem-bred rapper is cocky and brash, seemingly taking pages out of a long-standing rap playbook: He gives himself nicknames like Trap Lord and Hood Pope, and on 2013’s “Shabba,” his biggest single to date, he raps about how “dirty van bitches wanna suck my dick.” He regularly wears mink jackets and a gold grill in his mouth. He makes music videos that fashion him into one of Jesus’s disciples.
But, as he’ll tell you, the real Ferg is far more complex.

Born Darold Ferguson Jr., the 27-year-old is an experimenter, an oddball, and an adaptable artist who figured he’d be a fashion designer—he designed T-shirts alongside his late boutique-owning father and even started his own line of belts. But he wound up a rapper. “I was designing, making money off that,” he says of the teenage years he spent painting silk-screened shirts by hand with a paintbrush and acrylic paints, following in his dad’s footsteps. “But I had another talent,” Ferg says. “Rapping.”

Continue reading on GQ Magazine.

22nd Apr2016

A$AP Ferg’s ‘Always Strive and Prosper’ Available Now

by @Djordje

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After much anticipation, A$AP Ferg’s sophomore album Always Strive And Prosper is available now. Get your copy on Apple Music, Amazon, Google Play & stream it on Spotify.

21st Apr2016

The New York Times Reviews A$AP Ferg’s ‘Always Strive And Prosper’

by @Djordje

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It’s hard to think of a hip-hop album with more heart, one with a narrative more thoroughly interwoven with the love of family and friends, than “Always Strive and Prosper,” the second full-length by ASAP Ferg, the restless experimenter of the ASAP crew.

Here is Ferg, remembering his reckless uncle, on “Psycho”: “Wanted to be like you, jail tat on the chest/With the rugged cornrows and a stab on my neck.” And here, celebrating his tough grandmother, on “Let It Bang”: “Grandma hid that hammer in her mattress from my uncle/He would listen to Wu-Tang while walking in the jungle.” On “Beautiful People,” Ferg’s mother shows up for some spoken-word poetry, in between rhymes from Chuck D and Ferg proclaiming, “Watch what you put in your body, so we can live it long.”

Continue reading on The New York Times.

20th Apr2016

(Video) A$AP Ferg – FLEM

by @Djordje

New Wavy Wednesday video from A$AP Ferg tonight for his Kirk Knight-produced track “FLEM.” Watch above.

19th Apr2016

New Music: Jim Jones – Harlem ft. A$AP Ferg

by @Djordje

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Harlem comes together for this new record from Jim Jones and A$AP Ferg. Listen to the new collaboration below.

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