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THE GRAMMY CONVERSATIONS: POST MALONE

Interview by Jamie Mitchell

Republic’s Post Malone has been a streaming star for some time, but his “rockstar” featuring 21 Savage has been nothing short of a phenomenon, setting streaming records and outpacing hits by some of music’s biggest acts. The name of this rapper/musician—whose sophomore full-length, Beerbongs and Bentleys, is due to drop early next year, has lately gotten much louder in the Best New Artist Grammy conversation.

Why Bud Light?
The question is, “Why not Bud Light?” It’s my beverage of choice. It just speaks to me. It’s like my water.

How has success changed your daily life?
Other than having money and having people recognize me some places I go, not much has changed. I’m still that kid from Dallas who loves to get weird!

How big an influence has your dad been? Who else has influenced you?
My dad is a huge influence and always will be. Everything I love came from him. He introduced me to all the music I love, like Metallica, Pantera, Megadeth, 2Pac and Biggie. I wouldn’t know about any of that if it weren’t for my old man. He spent time with me. He’s always been my biggest fan—he still is. He’s the best. I love him. We are in a constant competition to see who’s cooler and he always wins.

Talk about moving to L.A.
When I first moved to L.A., it fucking sucked. I was living in my friend’s closet. I left school. I didn’t have money for food or cigarettes. It was just a struggle. I made “White Iverson” in that closet, put it up and then I got Wiz and Mac tweeting me. It’s crazy. I still can’t believe it.

When you released “White Iverson,” where did you think you would be by now?
I knew it would happen at some point. I was confident, but I didn’t know when and how crazy it would be. I’m thankful for it all, though.

Although you first gained attention as a hip-hop artist, your music seems to work for all kinds of audiences. How do you define what you do?
I don’t define it. I wanted my album to touch on everything I am. It’s got rap. I play guitar on the album. You can see influences from the artists who inspire me. I do what comes naturally. Sometimes I fuck with a super heavy hip-hop beat; other times, I’m smoking a nice Camel Crush and drinking a Bud Light with an acoustic guitar. I like to think there are no boundaries, and I just make what I fuck with and what I know my fans would fuck with.

‘‘I was living in my friend’s closet... I didn’t have money for food or cigarettes. It was just a struggle. I made ‘White Iverson’ in that closet, put it up and then I got Wiz and Mac tweeting me. It’s crazy. I still can’t believe it.’’

“rockstar” is becoming one of the biggest songs of the year. How did it come together?
Tank God played me the beat in NYC, and we just got weird.  I love 21 Savage and thought he was the perfect attitude for the record. We had it done since about December of 2016, just waiting for that right punch—and we got it with 21. The video is on the way. It’s going to be one of the best videos of the year!

What can you tell us about Beerbongs and Bentleys?
I can tell you I play guitar on there more than I did on Stoney. Tommy Lee plays some drums, Ty Dolla $ign is on the album. There’s a few surprises on there that you’ll hear soon enough.

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