Contrary to the stereotype, some guys are out here looking for a real connection, but that may not be what a particular women is looking for. Like you said there’s anguish behind these groupie tales and sometimes feelings do get hurt.
Exactly. These are things I’ve learned and things I’ve seen. These are things that are very true and real to me. On the EP, I have a record called "Strip Club" and I’m shouting out a lot of different dancers. I don’t see anything bad about any of them because I don’t have anything bad to say about any of them. I learned so much from them and when I say "I wish I could turn my hotel into a strip club/I’d invite everybody," it’s not that I want to have girls come dance at my hotel, it’s basically saying, I made it to this level of life and I wish I could invite all of these girls here cause they taught so much along this journey.
In the verses, I break down each girl and I’m stating an attribute about each of them. Like "my girl Dior she don’t dance no more." But she cool as fuck and she stay down. She got up out of that life but she remains true to the world. She was always cool and understanding and never judgmental of that lifestyle. Same as when we make it out of the hood but we still show love and represent and don’t turn our nose up at where we came from.
Or when I talk about Brittany, I seen somebody spent 60 and they still ain’t get that number. She was always about her business. To be able to see her focus it really taught me so much. Made a nigga want to get rich. She made me want to get money because she was one of those go-getters. So when I’m saying I wish I could invite all them to my to my hotel, it's basically cause I just wanted to show them, like, look where I’m at now.
Look at the guy you met at 17 years old going to the Blue Flame. And look where I’m at, at 30. President of my own label, one of the top song writing producers in the world, three times in a row songwriter of the year. I’ve learned from everyone around me and it's very important that I shout out that world because that is the world that I’m very well-loved and well known. A lot of people may look at it like, :Oh you just went up in there and spent a lot of money." These are people that are friends of mine. These are people when they see me they hug me. If I don’t spend a dollar in the strip club, when they see me it's love. Cause they like, "Man, Rico we watched you." OG, she used to dance at Magic City. She watched me come up.
A lot of people don’t know the music business was like my mistress. I was behind the scenes writing all these records for all these people. I don’t need everybody in the world to know who I wrote for. If you thinking that Beyonce wrote 'Sweet Dreams' makes you love that song better, then I want you to think that.
So that's a real connection.
You know what I mean? I was in there when I was 17 years old. So when she seen me it ain’t just like, "Oh there’s some money." It’s like, "That’s Rico. I watched him. I seen him tell me he was gonna be the biggest motherfucker in the world and he did it." I don’t want to make it seem like I made it already but it’s basically for them to say, like, "Damn. homeboy really came up." I wish they could see this.
So everything is my experience in this EP. I want you to look beyond the surface. Even the single, “They Don’t Know,” on the surface it’s about the mistress, and about me being with this mistress but really I wrote it about the relationship of being in the actual music business. A lot of people don’t know the music business was like my mistress. I was behind the scenes writing all these records for all these people. And I loved the relationship, it wasn’t a bitter relationship.
I never was the guy who was like, "Oh I don’t get credit for it and I’m the one making it." Nah, I love this relationship that we have. That’s special between the two of us because it’s truly about the love and purely about the music. I don’t need everybody in the world to know who I wrote for.
If you thinking that Beyonce wrote "Sweet Dreams" makes you love that song better, then I want you to think that. That’s not my job. Now the people who love songwriting and love behind the scenes, for them to know who did it, that’s important to me. But it was never a situation where I was bitter. In this relationship between me and the music business, this was our secret so to speak.
OK so it works on different levels.
Because if you listen to the songs I’ve written, the substance that is there was very true and real in all of my hits. Even records like “These Hoes Be Acting Up.” There’s substance there.
I didn’t know you wrote that one.
Yeah. "These Hoes Be Acting Up," "Ball." All these records, even the record that you might think is ratchet-ass song, I always try to make sure there’s a bit of content there for everyone. And that’s what makes the EP fun to me. That’s what makes the creation of the album fun. Being able to have all these cool conceptual records. I had to respect the people who are really the core of music, like you know I got A$AP Ferg to do a record with me for my album. I got A$AP Rocky that just did a verse on my record for my album.
OK, so then after the EP there’s an album in the works?
Well when this EP drops I think another gear is about to kick in. “To My Ex” that sounds like a smash.
That was one of the first songs I did. That made me want to really do this EP. My manager Danny went crazy when he heard it. He was like, "Yo this is a smash. This is the one." And I was so happy to be able to put Tiara Thomas on it, to have her rhyme on it because a lot of people don’t know how versatile she is and how multifaceted she is as an artist. She went in and she wrote her verse in like five minutes off the top of the head. She don’t write nothing on paper. She just got in there and spit the rhyme and I was like, "Yo this is... I never seen a girl do that before."
As I listen to these records with the private jets and the champagne and everything, my imagination runs wild. What is the wildest groupie experience that you can remember? I mean, like, how crazy does it get?
Aw man let me tell you. When I was like 17, 18 years old, I was in Atlanta. I used to be with Jagged Edge a lot. So they had a company called 581. And I was never signed to 581 but I was always just like down. But Kyle Norman, they call him Quick, he’s one of the members of Jagged Edge. He’s like one of the funniest, most charismatic people I know. You would never know this because he doesn’t sing lead. He’s just like one of the guys in the group. One of the dark-skinned guys that a lot of woman would go crazy over. So one night I met this girl, I met her at a club called Fuel in Atlanta. Make sure you write Fuel. When people read this and they see Fuel they gonna be like, "Oh shit. I remember that."
I met this girl and we just hanging out talking and Kyle comes downstairs, like, 'What are you doing?' And I’m like, 'What you mean? I’m chilling.' He said, 'Man that’s not what you do with her.' And he just started having sex with her right in front of me.
Taking it back.
So I met this girl at Fuel. We went to Fuel the next day I invite her over to the guy’s house where I was staying on weekends. Because I would go from Tallahassee to Atlanta every weekend and I would stay at a room at his house every weekend. So I invited the girl to the house the next day.
I’m 18 years old and this girl to me was amazing. I never seen a woman this beautiful that would take interest in me, ever. You know, big pretty lips, big ass, big tits and the most amazing pretty face. Back when I was younger that wasn’t common. Girls who had big asses and was pretty? That wasn’t normal. They was like few and far between. So I saw this girl, she comes to the house. I’m downstairs in the basement where the studio was in this back room, we just hanging out. I’m not expecting to have sex with her or anything. I’m just hanging out for around 20, 30 minutes…
Was she a dancer when you met her?
No she wasn’t a dancer. It was just a regular club up in Buckhead, this was when Buckhead was popping. So we hanging out downstairs talking and Kyle just comes downstairs and he’s like "What are you doing?" To me. And I’m like, "What you mean? I’m chilling." He said, "Man that’s not what you do with her." And he just started having sex with her right in front of me.
Right then and there?
Yes. Right then and there. And I was so shocked, I didn’t know what to do. I was just so... I didn’t understand it.
So she was sitting in a chair he just threw her legs up in the air or what?
Yeah, he did. He just gave her something and she took it. One of his body parts, she took it and uh...
She started to work with it.
Yeah, Yeah, Yeah. And then he proceeded to have sex with her in front of me. And I was like, "What the fuck is going on?" Like, I’m thinking this is the most beautiful girl I’ve ever met in my life and she should be my wife one day.
And he’s like, "Yo, what are you doing man?"
Like, let me show you what you do.
Yeah, yeah. And it fucked me up man. It was like, "Oh shit, this is real." And the funny part is, I’m young as hell. She was so beautiful to me that after it happened, I still was like, "Yo, uh, so can I call you later?" I walked her out like afterwards.
And that was the last time I saw her from that night.
That was, that was crazy. That was one of the craziest things that have ever happened to me.
So he wasn’t like, You have some too right now? You were just watching?
I probably could have. I’m sure I probably could have. I couldn’t believe what was going on. I was like, I don’t know what to do. But I still was so attached, I still was so obsessed by how she looked.
So that’s the beginning of that everybody’s girl.
Yeah man. Yeah.
That’s just amazing man. Yeah, there’s a lot of different people living a lot of different lifestyles on this planet man, you know. And you kind of open the door on this EP.
Yeah. I just open the door for the conversation and you know, it’s all good. I still never judge her. This is just one of those things where you just learn and you see so much and you grow as a person and you take those things with you. You figure out how they make sense because God doesn’t make mistakes and everything you see and go through, you go through it to learn something. To be wiser in that area.