kap g

Just last week, up-and-coming Atlanta rapper Kap G appeared alongside T.I. on CNN to discuss the lyrics and ideas behind Kap's "La Policia (Remix)," which features Tip and David Banner.

The song, which Kap wrote about two years ago under its original title "Fuck La Policia," came out of a frustrating situation that occurred between the young rapper, his brothers and the police. As a Mexican-American facing the injustices of the police system, Kap G felt like it was his responsibility to use his voice and his power to express the feelings that many young minorities face when dealing with powerful authority figures. With all of the current injustices seen in this country in recent months involving the deaths of Mike Brown, Eric Garner and most recently Freddie Gray, the MC felt it was the right time to drop the remix to the controversial record featuring T.I. and David Banner and shed more light on the social issues facing the country.

After appearing on CNN with Don Lemon and T.I. last week, XXL spoke with Kap G to get his thoughts on his first national TV appearance, the reasoning behind the "La Policia" record and what he's got in the works coming up. —Roger Krastz


XXL: How did your song, “La Policia” come about?
Kap G: I made “La Policia” two years ago. It was me and my two brothers, we got pulled over by the police for no reason and the whole situation was just unfair. The cop basically racially profiled us. You know, he was trying to check our car. Trying to check for our IDs thinking we were illegal and that just didn't sit well with me. So the next day I actually went to the studio, me and Squat Beats, I came up with the idea and I did it over one of his beats and that’s how it came about. Skip a few years later, I got T.I. on it and I got David Banner on it. I feel like it represents what’s going on today.

Why do you feel it was the right time to drop the remix with Tip and Banner?
Because there’s a lot going on right now. You got Mike Brown who got killed. You got Eric Garner. You got Freddie Gray. I feel like you just can’t sit back and not do nothing, especially being a rapper, being an artist, you got that platform to say something where people can hear you and they follow. So I feel like it was the perfect time to drop it, unfortunately. I feel like it was the perfect timing because a lot of stuff [is happening] right now and people are really not talking about nothing. They’re not getting the message. So I feel like it's time for that right now.

How did you get T.I. and David Banner on the remix?
David Banner, that’s like my big brother. He’s a really good guy. I’m actually on his new album. But the way I got with David Banner is that he seen my “OG Bobby Johnson” freestyle video, which I’m in front of a Home Depot at the parking lot. And I met him one day and he said, “Yo man, I seen your 'OG Bobby Johnson' video. I admire what you do. You representing for your people and that was so different what you did in the video.” He wanted to get me on a song, so that song is going to be on his new album that’s coming out soon. David Banner was the perfect man for the third verse; he always keeps it real and he’s for the people.

The way I got T.I. is because I was at my co-manager’s birthday party and he pulled up and he seen me. I didn’t expect him to say something to me first, with him being the OG. I was already going to tell him what’s up but he seen him and said what’s up and he congratulated me on everything. He also said to me, “I told [Kap's Atlantic Records rep] KP that I want to hop on that 'La Policia' record, if that’s cool.” And I was like, “Hell yeah, that’s cool with me.” And you know, T.I. is a busy man. I seen him in Cali at the Grammys and he reminded me, “Yo, Kap, I’m still going to do the verse for you, man. My bad, just been moving around.” And he definitely kept his word, so that’s how I got T.I. on that.

Can we expect a video for the song?
Yeah, we’re going to shoot the video soon. Definitely.

Are you going to continue dropping records speaking on social issues that affect the community?
Yeah. Me just being an artist, I talk about what I see, what I experience, what’s going on. So I gotta keep it real.

Why do you think a lot of rappers choose not to speak on social topics affecting the community?
I feel like they don’t speak about it, maybe, because they’re afraid. It’s time to bring back that old hip-hop. You know, back in the days people were really talking about what was going on in their neighborhoods, just about being poor and what they have to go through. And I feel like nowadays people just want to talk about being rich, you know, flexing, the Rolexes. So I feel like its time to bring that back.


How did you find out you were going to be CNN to speak about your song?
KP, the person who signed me, told me a week before my appearance on CNN. I’m thinking it's going to be a regular CNN interview that’s going to go online. I didn’t really know a lot of info about it, so the day I did it that’s when I found out I had to go into the CNN building and it was going to be live and it was just kind of crazy. My first time doing something like that and one of my first times being on live TV.

Were you hesitant about doing the interview with CNN?
Not at all, because it was CNN. One of the biggest networks in the world. I feel like I skipped levels being on CNN, so I couldn’t miss that.

What was the reaction that you received from the fans?
Man... My fans, they showed love. If you saw me on CNN, I wore the cowboy hat, because when I was growing up I used to see my dad and my uncles at parties and stuff, and I always used to admire the way they dress. So being that I’m Mexican I had to represent that. I felt like being on TV was such a big platform for people to see you that I felt like I had to represent on CNN.

Why did you end up taking off the hat?
Oh man, 'cause I had to show the hair a little bit. [Laughs]

Did you get a chance to speak with T.I. after the interview?
Yeah. Me, T.I. and KP were in a group message. Before the interview I didn’t know what to expect. It was my first time being live on TV, so as soon as I was done, KP hit me and T.I. on a group message telling us, "Great job." Tip also told me good job and all that, and I told him I appreciate him because, you know, he’s somebody who I looked up to and I still do 'cause he’s an Atlanta legend.


What should we expect music-wise from you coming up?
I’m about to drop a new project. It’s called El Southside and should drop in May. You’ll see “La Policia (Remix)" on there with T.I. and David Banner. This will be my second project.

I know you’ve been working a lot with Pharrell, any stuff that we should expect with him on it?
Pharrell, that’s my big brother, man. We got a lot of stuff in the works. I got the Dope movie coming out in June that Pharrell is executive producing. I have a role on there. Pharrell and I are definitely going to get into the studio some more.

How did you get the movie role for Dope?
Oh man, really it was Pharrell being my big brother. He really looks out for me all the time. He found out about a role in which they needed somebody Mexican and they were looking for the typical bald-headed Cholo to play the role. Pharrell found out about it and he automatically thought about me. He was like, “I know Kap would kill this role.” And he put my name in there. I auditioned for it and they loved it, man. I ended up killing the role.

What’s your role in the movie?
I basically play a hustler who has his own business selling fake Louie bags, fake designer stuff and all that and I’m selling to the main characters in the movie.

Related: T.I. and Kap G Discuss the Remix to “La Policia” on CNN
Listen to Kap G Feat. T.I. and David Banner, "La Policia (Remix)"
The Break Presents: Kap G