The Product Mixtape and Signing to Def Jam
August Alsina: "The Product was my first mixtape. That name came from because I look at this music shit just like it's some street shit. Just the same way it was for me in the streets selling dope and how my niggas moved, this shit go the same way. So I felt like I'm the product, I got to show you niggas that my shit is more potent than the next nigga. That's why you come fuck with me, because my crack is straight drop and you ain't got no choice but to come fuck with me because my shit straight off the boat.
"That's what it was for me and my squad. We came up with what we wanted to do and we just stuck with it. We started grabbing a lot of people attention. Later down the line Def Jam came into play. The Product was really a bunch of flips over somebody else's beat. I was really just jacking for beats. I was taking the hottest song at that time and doing my shit over it. People just so happened to like it.
When we went to meet with Def Jam, [Def Jam Head of A&R Karen Kwak] told me she'd been watching me since I was 14 on YouTube.
"When I was doing the first Product I remember really wanting to fuck with Young Money. I was like, 'Man, I'm from New Orleans, it just makes sense.' It was a layup to me. I waited around. My manager's squad, Noon Time, they've been around for a long time, and he got a real good relationship with Baby, so we went to go meet him, play some music. I met with Baby three or four times. Baby was really fucking with my shit. He said he wanted to do it. But I've never been the type of person to wait on nobody, I don't wait on no nigga. I felt like I was sitting around waiting on something that I don't know is going to come for sure. I'm not really big on letting people drag they feet with me, so I just kept hustling, and later on Def Jam came into the picture, and we started fucking with Def Jam.
"When we went to meet with Def Jam, [Def Jam Head of A&R Karen Kwak] told me she'd been watching me since I was 14 on YouTube. She got a chance to watch me grow and watch me become who I am, and understand who I am not only as an artist, but as a man, and what I come from. I thought that was cool. Later on, when I dropped my first single with Trinidad James ['I Love This Shit'], Baby hopped on the remix to it. So everything come together. It's just crazy how it started. For some reason, man, God love me. He love me. [Laughs.] I can say that."