Zoey Dollaz’s Visit to Church Inspires Title of His Upcoming ‘Mega’ EP
Zoey Dollaz's plans for hip-hop domination don’t seem so far-fetched once you check his stats. The rapper and songwriter has been planting seeds in every field since his entry into the rap game, and in 2018, he's flourishing more than ever.
“I was born in Miami, but I was raised in Haiti," Zoey tells XXL over the phone from his home in Florida. "My mom is a business lady, so she was there but at the same time she wasn’t always there. She had like, four or five businesses.” Fortunately enough, her book smarts rubbed off on the impressionable rapper, who went on to join Future’s Freebandz label after making Miami his permanent residence.
When he’s not in the studio working on his forthcoming EP, Mega, the “Free Smoke" spitter is busy crafting tracks for other artists. “He does a lot of writing behind-the-scenes that people don’t know about,” his manager, Dizzy, chimes in to add. The rhymer has collaborated with Trippie Redd on an unreleased track and penned music for Bhad Bhabie, who he’s been working on a couple songs with for her debut project. He even has a unreleased song with Maroon 5's Adam Levine title "Missed Call," which he calls one of his favorite tracks to date.
Then of course Dollaz has a slew of cuts with Future in the chamber, with plans to release a collab project in the near-future—in February they released their latest collaboration, "One of One." “Man, I’m going for mixtape," he says. "We don’t know when the exact date for it is, but we got a few songs together that we never even put out."
After a busy 2017 with his star-studded M'ap Boule EP and single after single, you’d think he’d want to take a break. But now that we're finally able to take deeper look inside the man in the mirror, he's coming straight at us with guns blazing. Aside from his partnerships with Ethika and LRG, Zoey Dollaz holds a number of charities in his native Haiti annually, and even made a bet with XXL that he'll be a pilot in the near future.
“You know, out of my city I’ve been doing a lot of good things, and I’ve been one of the last few people that’ve had a real shot out of Miami as far as music," he continues. "The last person that did anything from there was [Rick] Ross, and I’m the batter up so I definitely gotta keep up with the legacy and make sure everything’s good."
Fresh off dropping his new song "God Juice" and the Ronny J-produced track "Moon Walk" featuring MoneyBagg Yo, Zoey Dollaz opens up about his upcoming project, goals to hit the silver screen and how he plans on smashing 2018.
XXL: So what can we expect from Mega?
Zoey Dollaz: I think it’s gon' be five to seven tracks. I don’t got much features on there, of course. All the people I rock with I done gave my fans a song with me and them, for the most part—Dave East, A Boogie, Tory Lanez, Fat Trel. [With] this EP, I’m more trying to focus on myself, and letting my fans know who I am. You become part of your fans’ daily life once they start loving your music, so I make sure the message that I put out there for them to get is something that could be useful at some point, you know?
Most of the topics is just real-life situations that I’m dealing with, or trials and tribulations in my life, and celebrations in my life and family issues and beef in the streets that people didn’t know I went through. I opened up with you guys when I came through, I’m just doing it now with the fans. This is more personal to me than anything.
And why did you decide to name the project Mega?
I decided to name it Mega because I was sitting down in a church service, and my pastor was saying that this is the year of mega things in the bible. Mega work, mega money, mega blessings, mega faith. Everything that you do is just gonna be mega for you if you got that mega faith, and I got that mega faith.
Which producers contributed to the EP?
Most of the producers I work with, they’re really close friends of mine. Go Grizzly, Major Seven, Ronny J, C-Gutta, Ben Billions and John Blu. I’m working with close people that I’m really cool with, and people I know that’s dope instead of doing the cliché and working with everybody that everybody else worked with because they gotta name. You hear a tag and be like “Oh, this person made the beat. Let me listen to the song.” I stayed away from that.
What single are you going to push first?
“Holy Water,” a.k.a. "God Juice," that’s gon' be the first one we gon' put out. The club could listen to it, but it’s more of that sit back in your car, or you at home with your headphones on and you catching a vibe and really listening. I’m spittin' on there, doing a real rap. It’s just letting people know how I went from rags to riches and I’m flashy now, and I’m still doin' it in a humble way. And because of that I feel like I’m on that God juice, and my God juice is basically me saying I’m blessed. God sprinkled his blessings on me, so I’m on that God juice. That's how I’m able to do everything I’m doing.
The intro is “Smile.” That’s also the record that me and Future working on the soundtrack for the movie Superfly. “Smile” is gonna be part of that soundtrack. [Editor's note: The tracklist for the Superfly soundtrack has been released. Zoey Dollaz's "Smile" does not appear on the final soundtrack.]
How did you both come to that decision?
I was in the hotel room with Future and I was like “Let me play you some of the records off my project.” I played “Smile” first, and he was like “Oh, yeah. Yeah this one right here, this it.” I’m talking on there; I’m letting people know that I been in the lab and I’m working on my craft. A lot of fakes tried to stop me but they couldn’t stop me. A lot of fake people tried to act like they was cool with me but they wasn’t. But I’m still me and I’m still doing what I do—I was just fly talkin'. Basically it fit perfect for the soundtrack.
Will you be acting in Superfly?
I hope, man. I hope. It’s not confirmed, but I hope they could reach out. If not then for sure, for sure later down the year. I shot one movie already and it’s coming out later on. And then we got more things in the works so I’m just waiting on the opportunities.
What other movies are you working on?
I forgot the title of the movie, man, I’ve just been so busy working. I work a lot so I be forgetting a lot of things. It’s coming out later on this year. [It stars] Alex Hibbert, who plays in the movie Moonlight and he’s also on the TV series called The Chi. It’s on the way. We’re shooting it.
And what is the rest of 2018 looking like for you once you drop Mega?
I feel like I’ma have a big year, yo. This year I plan on getting my biggest features; guys like Drake, J. Cole and Kendrick Lamar. The greats; the ones we looked up to growing up. I plan on having the best endorsements and partnerships—anything that could benefit the music and open up other doors, that’s what I plan on doing. I wanna have more content as an artist. I don’t wanna put myself in no box; I’m willing to work. Everything that they say rappers can’t do, that’s what I plan on doing.
I’m definitely going to go to school and get my aviation license. I’ma definitely do that so I can fly. And then I’ma do all the things that I’m doing in Haiti. I’ma go back out there and do some charity work. I plan on just having the biggest year ever, man.
An aviation license. Is that something you’ve always wanted to obtain?
Yeah, that’s always been my first love—airplanes been my first love before anything. it just so happens music took off before that, and it’s helping me feed my family so I’m focused on it. I promise XXL, before [the] fourth of July I’ll have my pilot license—at least my commercial [one]. I’ll be flying, for sure, for sure, before fourth of July. I might take XXL with me on my first flight.
See New Music Releases for June 2018