Wiz Khalifa Talks The "2050" Tour, "O.N.I.F.C.", "Remember You", Movies and More
Thu, 11 Oct 2012 08:58:08
Wiz Khalifa is a busy man right now.
He's about to hit the road on his massive "2050" tour. He's got Taylor Gang Records firing on all cylinders. He's got all kinds of other projects in the works. However, most importantly, he found the time to make one of the biggest, baddest, and best hip hop records of 2012, O.N.I.F.C..
Due out December 4, the record sees Wiz progress immensely from Rolling Papers as both a storyteller and wordsmith. There's an incendiary collaboration with Cam'ron he's stoked on and the undeniable, unique, and unforgettable first single "Remember You", featuring everyone's favorite alternative R&B astronaut The Weeknd. In other words, O.N.I.F.C. is everything you hoped for and more.
In this exclusive interview with ARTISTdirect.com editor in chief Rick Florino, Wiz Khalifa talks "Remember You", his upcoming tour, and why O.N.I.F.C. reminds him of Pulp Fiction.
What's the story behind "Remember You"?
The Weeknd and I simply wanted to go in and talk about both sides of things. When he sent me the record, he had come so crazy on it. He was talking so much shit that it was like, "Man, I've got to come from a different angle but still be myself and mesh with the song". I figured I'd talk about the same thing he was saying but from a personal point of view, given the real visual of it. I'm glad it came out like that. I thought about it for about 15 minutes and spit it out.
Is it two sides of a relationship?
It's not really two sides of a relationship but two sides of what The Weeknd is talking about. He's singing about a chick really proving herself, and I'm telling her why she should prove herself. I think this collaboration was just supposed to happen. Sonically, it's great. Lyrically, it's amazing. The beat is crazy. It's one of those things that people are going to gravitate towards more and more.
Does it open up the door to O.N.I.F.C. for you?
Yeah, for sure because people don't know what to expect now [Laughs].
Did you have a vision for the album as a whole?
It's definitely going to be another one of those full expressions. It's also going to be something new. It's a totally new experience for everybody. It's something new for me so I want everybody to feel progression and also the consistency.
Is it important for you to tell stories and paint visual pictures with the songs?
I just build off of my own personal experiences of what I know exists. I talk about reality and some opinions I might have. People I have a certain way of saying things. I put that into my music and make it interesting and fun. I don't really try to change people's opinions on too much. I really just try to go with what they know and let them know I feel that way too.
What song from O.N.I.F.C. speaks to you the most?
I do actually have a favorite song. I'm not even going to lie [Laughs]. My favorite is "The Bluff" with me and Cam'Ron. That's because it was the best situation to ever happen, and it's the biggest dream to come true for me. The way it happened, what the song is, and what it's about make it my favorite. Cam'Ron has a lot of swag. I was just trying to match that Harlem swag but still do my Pittsburgh thing. It's a good mesh.
When did you first hear Cam'Ron?
I've been into him since he first came out. I remember listening to the first album and the second album. Then, he got with Roc-A-Fella. After that, they started doing the Dipset thing. I bought every Cam'Ron record. There was a time when people were burning a lot of CDs and bootlegging stuff. I'd burn CDs too but as soon as a Cam'Ron CD came out I made sure I bought that [Laughs]. I wouldn't be burning that.
Why did you choose "Medicated" as the conclusion?
The end is important because there's always a new beginning after the end for me. I'm constantly releasing new music so I never close it out fully. That's why I think it's such a good song to have at the end. It leaves everything open for reinterpretation. You can go back in and listen to the album more. Also, you're waiting for the next one.
If you were to compare O.N.I.F.C. to a movie or a combination of movies, what would you compare it to?
Pulp Fiction! I love that movie. This is like stories on top of stories, but there's still one main story. There's action. There's that sleek, upscale boss life. Then, there's a little bit of rawness to it. It has that grimy Pittsburgh shit that's been in all of my projects as well. It's got everything. I remember the first time I saw Pulp Fiction I didn't know what the fuck was going on, but it grew to be one of my favorite movies.
What are some of your other favorite movies?
I like all of the mob flicks. You can pick one, and I'll say, "Yeah!" [Laughs] I like this movie called The Business. It's a British movie that's really tight. Dead Presidents is one of my favorite movies. Jackie Brown is up there.
What's on tap for the "2050 Tour"?
The tour is going to show a glimpse of O.N.I.F.C.. There will be a part of the tour where you get to see some things and get excited about it. When we get into the new album, it's going to grow more and become more interesting and cinematic.
Would you ever want to collaborate with a rock band?
Yeah, in the future, I think the more I service myself and my projects for what they are, the more we'll be able to make that stuff make sense. I have a wide range of everything I can do. It's about aiming those, executing them, and making sure people get the right stuff at the right time.
What's your favorite Wiz Khalifa song?
See our review of "Remember You" here!