Produced by: E. Dan
Wiz Khalifa: “That’s a really personal song. I stepped outside of myself and acted like I was talking to somebody else, but I was actually talking to myself. I was talking about my whole journey and everything that I’ve been through. I was summing it all up for me or anybody else that’s in that position or hopes to be in that position.
”It’s not just rap, it’s about achieving what you wanted to achieve and getting in that position. Now you got everything that you wanted, it’s sort of celebratory, but reflective at the same time. Just looking at everything you got and what it took to get there. The good and the bad kinda made me where I am now, so that’s what it’s all about.
“Rolling Papers is a great representation of all the styles of music that have influenced me. It’s different from everything that I’ve worked on before. It’s not completely different, but it doesn’t sound like those full projects. And as far as my career, it put me in a position to make any type of music that I’d ever want.
”I’m never gonna have to go back and try to make another ‘Fly Solo,’ but if I do, people would accept it and know that that’s me. I expressed all angles of my creativity so now I can just move freely and do everything and anything. The only regret that I have is that Nipsey Hussle couldn’t get on the album. Other than that, I think it’s timeless and if they don’t understand it now, they’ll understand it years from now and they’ll be able to get what Rolling Papers is.”
E. Dan: “He said a lot on there that he really wanted to get out content wise. I think that’s what we wanted when we started it. We kind of had the idea of doing stuff a little more indie and off the wall.
“Every artist, when they’re 16, 17, is still sort of searching for their sound and comfort zone, as far as who they are as an artist and a person. Being young and wanting to prove yourself to everybody—especially in the rap game—early on you’re always going to want to sound a little tougher and little more aggressive.
“I think once he grew into himself as a person, that stuff just became natural. At some point, he got more and more comfortable being on records. Wiz came into his own around Kush & Orange Juice, as far as his style and personality on a record. I feel like the album is sort of a more mature version of that personally.”
Benjy Grinberg (Executive Producer and CEO of Rostrum Records): “That was in the early sessions. It was after the made ‘Star Of The Show’ and ‘When I’m Gone.’ It had actually leaked early like “Fly Solo,” and we weren’t going to put it on the album. But as we were sequencing the album, me and Wiz were in his apartment in L.A., and he has a studio there, and we were listening to all the different songs trying to figure out the right sequencing.
”We thought of ‘Cameras,’ and he was like, ‘I really need that song. That song would really round out the album to me, because of what it’s saying. And I think if we put that last, it would really bring it full circle, and it would really make it the exact album that I wanted to make.’“
Zvi Edelman (Vice President Of A&R, Atlantic Records): “It’s something that was done definitely after he signed the deal, but early on in the process. I think that the entire time it’s something that Wiz in particular knew he wanted on the album. And, it’s just cool because some people get this amnesia. You can make the greatest record in the world at the start of the recording process and by the end you just don’t want anything to do with it because you have these new shiny toys that you made last week.”