Tyga may be coming straight outta Compton, but the tattooed rapper is anything but an N.W.A. clone. The “Coconut Juice” rhyme spitter is a deft blend of hip-hop, pop and even a little bit of rock ‘n roll. He collaborates with his cousin, Travis McCoy of Gym Class Heroes, but he’s also in the studio with Lil Wayne recording a guest spot on the upcoming Tha Carter III. And then there’s his affiliation with Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz, the man who signed him to a deal on Decaydance Records.
Preparing for the release of his debut album No Introduction, dropping June 10, the young newcomer gives XXLmag.com a brief lesson on how to both party like a rock star and how to live in Wayne’s world.
In da Club
Pete Wentz and Weezy might be like apples and oranges in comparison, but Tyga hangs out with both of them at various times. Imagine what it’s like to go from making it rain in the club to mingling at posh Hollywood hills parties.
“When I hang out with Pete, it’s straight Hollywood with people like Paris Hilton, Britney Spears,” Tyga said. “Rockers love to drink. I’m talking about they drink whiskey straight. They don’t wash it down with nothing they just drink it straight. They get messed up to the highest degree. When I’m with Wayne we go harder in the club. Rappers are more flashy in the club. [With] Wayne, they be throwing money everywhere [but when] I’m in the club with Pete, we’re laidback. Rappers like to make their presence known, because we like to let people know we came from nothing and now we have something.”
Rappers like to talk about how hard they grind, but handing out CDs and flyers on the street and having 1,000 plus MySpace fans isn’t exactly like loading up in the van with the band.
“A lot of hip-hop artists grind but not like a lot of these rock artists do,” Tyga explained. “Hip-hop artists like to do shows but they don’t do tours until they come out; where you got a rock artist, they grind it out for years and years and just keep performing [anywhere they can]. I respect rock more because they really grind it out—[they] be in vans [touring] and all types of stuff. Hip-hop artists [grind too] but you don’t really see a lot of hip-hop tours. Rock artists are always on tour. You don’t really see a lot of hip-hop tours all the time, that’s why it’s so big it’s like duh, duh, duh is on tour.”
Groupie love is worldwide no matter what type of artist you are, but there’s a difference between friendly and being friendly.
“The groupies be the same,” Tyga said. “The only thing is, I’m just now learning if they are groupies or not. Because with hip-hop, it’s like, you know certain females or how certain people act. But with the rock and the pop crowd you don’t really know [if they’re] just fans or groupies. Caucasian people are real friendly so I don’t really know how to read them that well, so I’m learning.”
With a recent string of violence at hip-hop concerts, it seems fans in the genre are opting for mean mugging and ice grilling over waving hands in the air.
“I like rock crowds more than hip-hop crowds,” Tyga said. “Hip-hop crowds will just sit there and look at you and just wait for that song that’s huge on the radio to come out. But rock [crowds] are more energetic. If they respect what you do they’ll mess with you hard, but if they don’t they won’t boo you but they’ll just be like get outta here. Rock crowds are real tough, but being that I have respect in the whole rock/pop world, all my shows be good. People be the same. If I’m doing the single “Coconut Juice” or if I’m doing a mixtape song I did years ago in my room, people still go crazy. It all depends where you at though, too. Because now mostly everybody likes rock music. Most of the rock people like the hip-hop stuff now, too, so it be a mixture of people at every show.
Stylin’ On You
Tight jeans, previously a rock staple, along with big hair and tacky tattoos, has been running rampant in hip-hop style lately, trumping the original mantra of the baggier the better. But enough is enough.
“Rappers are trying too hard that’s why they’re jeans are too tight, because they don’t know what they’re doing,” Tyga explained. “I don’t think it has anything to do with the way a person dresses. When you get to know a person it don’t even matter. But if somebody trying be on some gangsta stuff you don’t really want to see them in tight jeans.”