Redd Roxx Rundown: Who is Peezy?
blog by Maria Redd • October 30, 2012 @ 11:00am
Niagara Falls native Pretty Boi Peezy was once a part of Lather Gang, a smooth-flowing hip-hop collective that garnered a lot of local buzz. Peezy, however, recently branched off to pursue his own career, eager to explore his talents and make his name. Although he has relocated to Chicago, I was able to catch up with the ambitious young rapper and find out how he’s doing as a newly solo artist!
Redd Roxx: Thank you for taking some time out to do this interview! You’re originally from Niagara Falls, N.Y., but you’ve recently relocated to Chicago—what prompted the move?
Peezy: There’s more opportunity here in Chicago. It’s a bigger city and there’s more people. The only thing I don’t like about Illinois is the gang violence and black-on-black crime here. They’re gang-banging hard up here, but I stay to myself. I’ve already met wonderful people that want to help me further my music dreams and career. I actually love it here, plus it has a better scenery for my music videos!
RR: New surroundings can be very beneficial. Even though you went solo and you’ve moved, are you still affiliated with Lather Gang in any way?
P: I mean, I got love for them. No hard feelings. I heard one of the group members actually got a deal, so congratulations to him! But personally, I gotta do whats best for Peezy, feel me? I ruined a lot of great connections with big people around Western New York over the group. I just felt like this was the best thing for me and my career. Life goes on—to each his own.
RR: That’s understandable. What made you decide to ultimately take the solo route? Anything specific?
P: Too many chiefs and not enough Indians. No one was listening in our group—a couple of members got a little local fame and went Hollywood on me. I kinda fell back—plus it became a personal thing because my home situation kinda was jeopardized over the group. It was either home or my career. I got hurt because the woman I loved kinda became more than a fan…let’s just say that.
RR: A lot of times, those are the issues that many artists say they experience in a group. Did you find it more challenging to be in a group or on your own?
P: It’s more challenging to be in a group. Being that I’m so creative, it can cause conflict with other members. They might not want to do your type of song at a given moment. They may be in the mood for a girly type of song, but I may be in the mood to do a club song—so that can cause a lot of drama in the studio. Then there’s a clash with different egos—a “who’s better than who” or “who get more likes on Facebook” type of thing. So I think going solo and focusing on myself was the best thing for me and my career.
RR: I think anytime you put a group of people together, there’s going to be issues and differences. Hopefully you guys can come together and make music again in the future! But now that you’ve gone solo, are you currently signed, whether major or independent?
P: Right now, I’m independent. I love being independent and being able to work when I want to on my music and not being forced by a major label to have me do this, or go there—it’s a great pleasure. I would like to build a broader audience around the country before establishing a major deal with a company. I have been approached by A&Rs and was offered deals by Atlantic Records, I just felt the money wasn’t right—I was worth a little more than what they were offering. Plus I was young at the time, I was only about 21, I’m 24 now with more business knowledge about the music industry.
RR: I think it was a good decision to hold off and hopefully you’ll see it pay off in the long run. I’m sure you’ve gained more experience since then with your craft, as well. I saw you perform with Lather Gang at Summer Jam 2k12—where else have you performed?
P: I performed everywhere. I opened up at University at Buffalo’s Fall Fest back when Jadakiss, Busta Rhymes, Lupe Fiasco and Common performed. I performed at the Fabolous and Pleasure P concert at the Niagara Falls Conference Center, the Roscoe Dash concert at the Rapids Theatre and the Travis Porter concert in Rochester at Water Street Music Hall. I did shows in Chicago, where I opened up for Lil Mama. I also did shows and showcases in New York City before, too. I plan on getting some more shows—I have a few shows in the works.
RR: Wow! You’re on your grind with the performances I see! A lot of local artists don’t get to do half of the shows that you’ve done, so I definitely have to give you props on that. Do you have any performance coming up?
RR: That’s awesome! Congrats on the show. So it seems like you’re getting down to business—I can say that I’m feeling your single “I Can Get You Wet,” what other projects do you have coming up?
P: I’m planning to drop my first mix tape next year in January—on my birthday actually—Jan. 14. It’s titled Born 2 Do This. As far as hosting the project, I’m looking to have DJ Holiday , who is a very prominent DJ out of Atlanta. I actually met DJ Holiday in person back in 2010, when I did a showcase for him in the Atlanta area.
RR: January is right around the corner, so make sure you keep us posted on that! Who are you most musically inspired by?
P: I love Jay-Z and I listen to Lil Wayne sometimes. Another person
who influences me would be Future—I like his creativity, and Jeezy, too. But not to sound egotistical, I tend to listen to myself a lot more than any other rapper. I try not to sound like nobody else so I always listen to my own music and try to perfect my craft as best as I can. A lot of people I know say they listen to Biggie and Pac—I actually didn’t grow up to that—and my mom listened to “Rapper’s Delight,” so I actually grew up listening to that older type of music. I was more of an R&B type of guy—I guess I’m like a Montell Jordan, R-Kelly type of music listener, but all genres influence me.
RR: It’s weird hearing you say that you didn’t grow up hearing Biggie and 2 Pac! Makes me feel old—but the era that your mom listens to is just as, if not more, influential to music! With that said, what can we expect to hear from you as a solo artist?
P: You’re gonna hear my life—being a solo artist betrayed by friends, being a father, partying and basically what not to do in the streets. I did the hustler thing when I was younger and nothing good comes from selling drugs, so I’ll basically tell you the negative side of life. I have tracks track called “Life Goes On” and “In Luv with the Hustle”. A hustle can be anything, I just like to make money, live wealthy and be comfortable, feel me? I also have that new age music, one of my favorite tracks I like is called “I’m Fly,” where I’m basically rapping about what’s trending in the fashion department—my name is Pretty Boi Peezy, so you know I gotta rap about my looks, too!
RR: If you could give advice to other up-and-coming artists, what would it be?
P: Basically, chase your dreams. Don’t let anybody hold you back or say you can’t do it. It’s a world of opportunity out here. Growing up in the 716 can be depressing…the most we have is Chippewa and they’re trying to ban that as we speak. There’s no real concerts coming to Buffalo or Niagara Falls. That’s why I got up and left. There’s three million people where I am now—I figured, being that I built a fan base very easily in Buffalo in only two years, I’ll do the same thing in a bigger city, but this time I’m gonna make it.
RR: Leave us with one of your favorite quotes….
P: My favorite quote is “MIND YOUR GRIND,” meaning worry about what you’re doing. What you’re doing may not work for everybody else, so just do you, basically. I also
have another quote I like to say which is, “If you don’t grind, you don’t shine”—that was said by an old friend of mine. It’s true. If you don’t work for what you want, you’re never gonna shine in this world. Like Scarface said, “the world is yours, you just gotta get out here and get it.”
Big ups to Peezy for such a great interview!