Gunplay Talks Def Jam Deal, "Power Circle" Verse and Quitting Coke


It’s not easy standing out with the lyrics likes of Rick Ross, Meek Mill, Wale, Stalley and Kendrick Lamar on the same track. Yet, that’s just what Gunplay managed to do on MMG’s single, “Power Circle,” which has the wild Miami native opening up his verse, spitting:

It’s all on me now, as you can see now/I’m gon’ get this money and I will not be de-nied/Been shittin’ on you fucks a long, time to pee now!”

For Gunplay Don Logan, the stellar showing just added momentum—on top of his riotous, crowd-favorite street single of last year, “Rollin’”—to ink a brand new deal with Def Jam Records as a solo artist. Rozay said that once GP left the “street shit” alone, he became a force to be reckoned with…and the Bawse was right. Here, with plenty of momentum on his side, the unruly MC talks his brand new deal with Def Jam, what “Rollin’” did for his career, his scene-stealing “Power Circle” verse and quitting coke after a long, hard struggle. From being perceived as one of Ross's goons in Triple C's to where your plate, where your lobster, where your sea bass? When you see him on the set, just know Gunplay is Rooollllliiiinnn’! —Mark Lelinwalla

Signing with Def Jam:

Signing with Def Jam

Gunplay: You know we was negotiating about a month or two, you know what I’m saying, just to get everything right. And just to get everything fair to where everybody could leave the table happy. Everything worked out just fine; we’re ready to move forward so it’s dry now so we’re just ready to make the best music possible.

It was a few labels that was interested, but you know I just like to—I don’t like moving around, I’m not a clique hopper, you know what I’m saying? I like to keep it in house. So that was the move I made and I just wanted to keep it in house.

Gunplay the Rapper Vs. Ross’ Goon:


Gunplay: I don’t really listen to the haters ’cause you know you have to move at their speed or they’re gonna hate you. If I ain’t have a deal by now, they ain’t you for what you do, you know what I’m saying, regardless. I don’t even listen to the haters, but honestly since “Rollin’” took off and I saw that I might really have a chance out here—and that really really made me sit down and focus and want to really want a solo deal, you know what I’m saying? You know that was always in the back of my mind, but in this industry it’s not easy to get a decent situation. So I just kept working and just to prove to everybody, if they was hating, and to make my dreams come true. That’s all I was concerned with—taking care of my family and chasing my dreams.

The Impact of “Rollin’”:


Gunplay: It just let me know the impact that that record actually had, you know what I’m saying? And without a video, without being on TV, just through word of mouth, through the streets, just through bootlegs, and through my fans, and through people behind the scenes such as yourself that support me, that’s how that record took off. So, I can just imagine if we put a budget behind one of those, you know what I’m saying, what the possibilities could be. So I’m just waiting for that next one, I’m gonna bring a couple more to the table.

Leaving the Street Life:

Leaving the Street Life

Gunplay: You know I’ve had a bunch of cases, charges, and warrants and—you know my legal shit is just crazy, you know what I’m saying? And the lawyer fees and shit man…it just gets to the point where I got the opportunity to make a difference in somebody else life and in my own and I’m fuckin’ it up out here getting caught with pistols and violating my shit, you know. I just started focusing on the music and taking my anger out there and just focus. Once you step out of your environment, your everyday routine and just try something new—once you choose a new path it guides you that way and you just keep going. So I was heading in a path of self-destruction, so I just found another lane and I found a lane and just staying focus. The streets still tried to bring me back, man, but sometimes you just got to get the hell out of there, you know what I’m saying? You got to get the hell out of there and focus. And I did it. I feel good and I’m ready to rock.

Filming “Hold Me Back” Music Video:

Filming the “Hold Me Back” Music Video

Gunplay: We was out there in the projects, you know what I’m saying? We was out there on the 17th and with Swizz Beats. It was dope, man. Everybody was out there, they showed us support, wasn’t no bullshit out there, and we was choppin’ it up from like 12 to 12 and then we was just shooting all day in different parts of the hood and it was just super dope. It’s crazy energy. That energy is good! You know what I’m saying? You know that’s my type of shit, so I tried to get me all my cameos in. That’s my vibe right there, so I felt right at home man.

His Verse on “Power Circle”:

His Verse on “Power Circle”

Gunplay: I was like man, ‘I don’t know, I just gotta tell ’em how I feel right now.’ That’s how I felt at the time, man. Like ‘Fuck it. I feel like this is my last verse, fuck it, I’m going in.’ ’Cause I didn’t know the outcome, you know what I’m saying, so that’s where that came from. I was feeling like that was my last verse on earth and that was gonna be it. That’s why I was like, ‘Fuck it! If I fall in the field and there ain’t no more air for me.’ You know, so I felt like time wasn’t on my side, when I was writing that verse, put it that way.

’Cause those some monsters right there, let me go ahead and not only give my emotions, but look who I’m up against. So, you know, I wasn’t thinking about murdering the verse and out rapping another nigga, I just wanted to make sure it blended just right.

On His Solo Career:

On His Solo Career

Branding, you know. And that’s the easy part for me. [Laughs] That shit is easy, that’s just branding, you know what I mean? And that’s gonna be very easy, I got the blueprint. I saw Ross do it. I saw Ross’s paper, man. I’m just gonna go ahead and brand Gunplay, and that’s what he want me to do. That’s what he wants everyone to do, Self Made, brand ourselves, and be on the biggest brand in the brand, so there’s no way that you shouldn’t brand yourself and get yourself together.

I want it to be timeless. I want it to—years down the road you can still play the records and niggas still gon’ rap word for word. You can play Ridin’ Dirty, the whole album, or Nas Illmatic, the whole album, Reasonable Doubt, the whole album. We still know word for word ’til this day, you know what I’m saying? That’s my goal for this album. It’s really the—just make that timeless ’cause it’s my time of my life where I’m never gonna be hot again, hopefully God willing. With hard work, I won’t be at this point of my life again. I wanna capture this and put it in a time capsule, so this is the transition from when I was coming up and this is what my mind frame was and this is where my mind was at and this is what I was on. Here goes the videos and the music to show it. And the next go round, I wanna definitely show the growth. I’m always gonna keep it street, but I’m gonna bring the streets with me to the top floor.

On His Drug Usage:

On His Drug Usage

It got pretty bad. It got bad. I can’t let it get to the point where I steal and shit. That’s just fuckdafied. I might borrow it from you, but I never really did some shit like that. I would just be like, ‘Front me with an 8-ball and I’ll just pay you later.’ Some shit like that. I would never steal or do dumb-ass shit like that. But how bad did it get? Just my health, man. Looking myself in the mirror and my nose never being right. I could never breathe straight and I’m always blowing my nose. I’m already a skinny nigga and that shit draws me up even skinnier by the time I wake up in the morning, I lost 10 pounds, like ‘What the fuck just happened?’ Then, that day you gotta be at a video shoot. You got raccoon eyes and you 10 pounds lighter and you can’t even breathe and you’re blowing your nose like crazy and sweating because that shit makes you sweat. Come on, man, you look crazy. That was really one of my first steps in really taking this rap shit seriously…and that was quitting coke. That was 2008.

Right now? Aw man, trust me…it’s a whole other ballgame. I’m back to reality. I’m back to life. That shit gives you a fucked-up attitude. It makes you snap on people you love. It’s not you, it’s the chemical imbalance that happens in your brain from snorting up that shit. You don’t even realize it. You think it’s the world against you. ‘Nah nigga, your brain’s about to melt.’ My mama’s a nurse. She tells me about that shit. She knew I got high and she would just pray that I stopped. My mind is clear. I’m thinking way clearer and I’m not thinking on impulse much. I talk about it and acknowledge it. To this day, that’s my favorite drug; my drug of choice. Now, I just pop a Molly, fuck it. That shit gets you high three, four hours and it stops. I’m back to reality.