It’s hard to believe that 2007 marks 10 years since Trick Daddy first came into the game. Since then, the Miami MC has dropped seven solo albums (two platinum and three gold), including his most recent release, Back by Thug Demand. While other 3-0-5 inhabitants like Rick Ross and Pitbull have relished in becoming Dade County’s latest poster boys, Trick has been quiet as of late. Busy building his new label, Dunk Ryders, and trying to get off his old one, Slip-N-Slide, Trick Daddy Dollars recently spoke to xxlmag.com about his newest project, his issues with Ted Lucas, Oprah and Bush and what he would do as the president of the United States.
Back by Thug Demand is your seventh album in 10 years. How’s the response been?
We had a little discrepancy about the first two week’s sales, but other than that, word on the streets is Trick got the hardest album out. I definitely represented strictly for the thugs, ’cause that’s who I do it for, really. I do it for the struggle, the hood, the ghettos, the jails, all the strip clubs, and Trick definitely love the kids, so it’s always good music.
Why did you decide to start your new label, Dunk Ryders, now?
I did that label for three reasons. First, so I can be able to see my kids two, three years in college. At the rate that I’m going and how music is going, that’d be possible. Second reason is to help save hip-hop. There’s a lot of bullshit music being put out, and the majors is signing these dudes ’cause they got one good record on they album and they don’t want the next major to sign them. So they signing them for the wrong reasons. Third thing is to help any young man make money and show them how much money can be made the correct way, the proper way to file taxes, and show them how much money I got fucked over for all these years.
Rumor is Trina’s been dropped from Atlantic. Ever think about signing her to your label?
They have certain options dealing with Trina’s deal, so that’s a situation that ain’t got nothing to do with Trina, I believe, ’cause you don’t drop baddest bitch off your label. There’s something else to that.
How’s your relationship with Slip-N-Slide founder Ted Lucas these days?
If I had one wish, I’d be free [or] indie by myself. My last two albums had two years between them, and that’s not my fault. I think the best thing for Ted to do is let me go off of Slip-N-Slide. If he respect me for the money I made him, the records and all the notoriety I gave him for Slip-N-Slide, he’d just let me go and let me get some real money, ’cause the rappers don’t make no money. If Ted Lucas can release me from Slip-N-Slide. Do it for the love of hip-hop. Do it for the love of Trick. Do it for the love of yourselves. And I guarantee you, he’d get more respect from the people off the streets. Ted cannot let me go out like a sucker in this game. He got to let me go out with the money, [and the] only way I’ll be able to make money from Slip-N-Slide is for Ted to let me go.
Why do you think he’s not letting you go?
’Cause he don’t care about me or himself. Maybe he needs to get to know himself. If Ted Lucas could write down all his problems and put them in a bag and shuck ’em up every morning, he’d realize the next day he’s still got another problem. The problem he’d deal with yesterday probably gon’ come back and bite him again, too. But if you take everything Trick did for you, all the good things, from the albums to all the good vibes the old original Slip-N-Slide did, and all the good times and put them in a bag—aww, man, that could take you a long way. The main thing is to keep it simple, keep it real, be honest and pull no stunts. You can’t forget where you started and came from.
Shifting gears for a moment, how do you feel about President Bush’s wanting to deploy 20,000 more troops to Iraq?
Bush don’t understand the morals of family. I don’t think he was ever loved. Everybody in his family been in politics all they life. He never had a chance to live his life, so he don’t know what it means to miss his family or to lose someone. When was the last time you hear about someone in his family passing? When was the last time they had a funeral? Never. I think Bush is trying to start a World War IV.
Well, we’d have to have World War III first.
Shit, we done did III. World War III was two terms with another Bush. We done had a Bush in our area for 16 years. We had to deal with him in Florida, ’cause Jeb [Bush] was the governor of Florida. We was dealing with it anyways. Y’all just getting pissed off about it. We been pissed off about it.
If you were in office, how would you resolve the situation?
First of all, if I was in office, I’d get together all the chiefs and all the heads and chiefs of staffs of all the countries and explain to them like, “This is how it’s going to be. We need y’all oil and water. Y’all need our money and technology. Now, what y’all gon’ do? Y’all act crazy, we gon’ blow ya off the face the earth.” And we not talking about the beef with other countries. We not talking about innocent civilians. I’m talking about the muthafucka we got the problem with. Go at him. I would [also] give better jobs and better homes for the homeless, [build] better shelters, and I’d curse Oprah Winfrey out for sending all that money over to Africa when we got poor homeless little girls in America.
Well, one of the reasons Oprah built the school in South Africa was because she felt the children abroad would appreciate it more, as opposed to the children here in America.
Yeah, it starts with her for thinking that. Kids would never care about going to school unless your mama and daddy instilled into your head and explained to you that you need this thing to live. Tell Oprah to come up off that money, man, and tell her to give me some of that shit. I guarantee Oprah could’ve gave me $10–$11 million, and I could’ve built one of the most beautiful schools in Miami and hired the right people to work the school and got grants approved to run the school. It would’ve been a success story, and within the next three years, I woulda had one of the top students in the state of Florida graduating out of my school.
You seem to be really passionate about political and social issues. Ever thought about running for a political office?
I’m a convicted felon. I can’t even vote. Ain’t no way they gon’ let me run. [But] actually, I ain’t want to tell nobody, but I want to coach the Dolphins, man. I’m trying to run for the head-coaching job at the Dolphins. I feel you shouldn’t buy a professional team unless you in love with that professional sport. That’s what’s fucking up the whole sport world now. How can someone have no knowledge of sports history and have nothing but money own the Miami Dolphins? Those are really my Dolphins. He own them, but they really my team. I just let him buy them.
Speaking of purchases, are you still one of Ralph Lauren’s biggest customers? After all, you were one of the first rappers to rep his Polo line in your songs.
I don’t fuck with Polo no more. We reached out to Polo in 1997 when “Nann Nigga” was real big, and everybody knows that once I said I was going to wear Polo that the whole South went Polo crazy. It was never designed for Black folks, ’cause the clothes really ain’t big enough. But I did that, and they followed me. We called them and was like, “Listen, I have an artist that’s biggin’ up Polo big. He got all the kids in the South wearing it. He doesn’t want no money, he just wanted to know if there was a way he could order stuff that nobody has?” The general manger of sales said that they not interested in nothing like that and they would appreciate if I didn’t even say they name in my rap. Fuck Ralph Lauren’s faggot ass and everybody he know.