South Central’s Cozz made waves when J. Cole announced that he signed him to his Dreamville label. Now, the upstart MC says Dreamville are ready to shake the rap game up. “We got three different areas. We got West Coast. We got Queens and we got Carolina on the squad,” he says. “I feel like everybody’s style is different. It’s not like we are trying to sound like Cole. It’s like we all got our style, so I feel like it is perfect. It’s gonna be a cool little takeover.”
Cozz has only released two songs, but they’ve displayed a lot of potential and room for growth. With his debut mixtape, Cozz & Effect, due out sometime this summer, we caught up with Cole’s newest artist to Dreamville.
Hometown: South Central, LA. All day. I’ve been there my whole life. I was in Inglewood until I was 6, living in South Central from 6 until now.
I grew up listening to: I grew up listening to oldies. I love stuff like Tupac, Eminem. Bone Thugs-n-Harmony. I was huge on Big L. That’s oldies type stuff. I do listen to new stuff too. I am a huge Kanye fan. I’m a huge fan of that Drake movement. I’m a huge Lil Wayne fan too. He’s a big inspiration too. Wayne is still the hottest in the game. You had that time period when he was the hottest in the game, period. He was all everybody was listening to. To me, he was the hardest rapper ever. Best rapper alive. He really inspired me on some lyrical type deal.
Most people don’t know: I guess a lot right now. [Laughs] I was a beast in track. I ran track, I think I own a record up there for 4 x 110. I’d be killin’ it in the sprints.
My style’s been compared to: I’ve been hearing ScHoolboy mixed with Kendrick. I’ve been hearing Ab-Soul. I heard a funny one yesterday – the dude was like Yukmouth and some other shit. I heard Mobb Deep. Yeah, a lot of different styles. I heard little bit of Eminem.
My standout records and/or moments to date have been: “Dreams” and “I Need That.” I was at ["Dreams"] producer’s house, Meez, [when I made that]. We were working on beats. I was just feeling deep, in my J. Cole mode. I was like, “Yo, man. I need some hip-hop shit. Something hard, that’s gonna bang. I need something hard, man.” I remember he started making the beat and it was coming together. I remember [saying] “Always had dreams of being rich, huh?” I just said that. I was like, “Damn, that shit is hard.” I ran with the shit. I took it home. I took the beat. I already had the hook ready. I just went home and spilled my life and just put it all together. It was just one of them days.
We made “I Need That” after “Dreams.” That was just me on some fun shit. It’s not just fun shit too, if you really listen to what I was saying in the verse and not the hook. The verse is actually some shit. I feel like that sums me up perfectly.
My goal in Hip-Hop is: I just want to inspire and get music out. I ain’t got a long time out right now, so I am still figuring out myself. I do just want to inspire. I want people to love the music out there and just do me.
I’m gonna be the next: I’m gonna be the next ‘Pac or some shit. I feel like ‘Pac was so, like, he could make you feel some type of way, but at the same time, he can still make a point. From the West Coast. He had a lot to say. Smart. I feel like I could do that. I could inspire a lot of people. I grew up in the hood as well, but I am smart enough to know that there’s more than the hood.
To check out more of my music go to: Follow me on Twitter (@cody_macc).
Also check out: “I Need That”
And: “Knock The Hustle”