An exclusive interview with our favorite new Florida rapper.
The Lord works in mysterious ways. Just ask Lambo, a Miami MC on the come-up who's been getting money long before he picked up a mic or started dating LeBron James' mother. Lambo and Gloria James have been dating for a while now, and the happy couple announced their engagement last December. Since then you've most likely seen him stunting on Instagram or heard the jokes about him being Lebron's future stepfather. But you've never gotten to know the man behind the flashy jewelry and the strictly-yachts-and-private-jets lifestyle. Thats's because Lambo has never given an interview—until now.
You may be wondering: With the whole world beating down Lambo's door, how did Complex snag this exclusive? After all, the man has over 12,000 IG followers and thousands of unread messages on his phone. Well, remember that part about the Lord working in mysterious ways? When we reached out to Lambo, he was riding around and getting it when the ash from his blunt fell... right on our email. Sensing the hand of fate at work, he hit us back right away.
And so it came to pass that Lambo and a small entourage dropped by the Red Bull Guest House in South Beach amidst the madness of Ultra Music Fest weekend. Lambo laid his phone down, gripped his double cup and kicked that uncut realness. He talked about his hustling days in Liberty City, his inspiration to make a mixtape with all 2Pac instrumentals, and his plans to kill the game with his own label, Lambino Ent. Relax and take notes.
The whole world is wondering who is this new MC Lambo? Where did he come from? What is he bringing to the table? It’s 2014, you’re out here flourishing, you're in the studio, you’re making tracks. How did you get to this point?
Believing in myself for one. I’m not going to say I’m really like musical like I grew up musical and all this stuff. Me and my friends, we grew up on the corner beat boxing and rapping against each other and we thought we had whole other type of talents.
Due to an incarceration of mine I learned how to get on into music, tune into myself, learn myself a little more and it built on a kind of music career because I found myself saying stuff on paper that I wanted to say out loud. That’s kind of how my music career came about. It’s not like I planned on being an emcee, or the best emcee, or a magnificent emcee. I really was just like, “Hey I’m pretty good at this because the words matching together." I kinda like the way the words was matching together.
Then when the words became a personality to it. I kinda built myself to be an open person. I caught all this knowledge, wisdom, overstanding and that taught me how to be open and it got me in that little grind a little bit. I couldn’t do too much in prison so I stuck with it. I continued to write words and when I got out—you're pretty much familiar with E-Class? He’s over at Poe Boy Entertainment and stuff. He’s a good friend of my father’s [and] a good friend of mine, watching me come up and stuff like that. So when I got out I figured if I’m going to do music I might as well deal with someone I can put an opinion on, someone I feel like I can trust. Because I wasn’t really never trying to just do music for money. Cause you can tell without no deal I know how to get money. So—that’s not the problem.
I see that chunky wrist.
Yeah, I do this sometimes, man. Sometimes I do it. It just makes me feel good. I like to step out. You know I mean? Some guys just do it because they gotta do it. Some guys do it to get the girls, you know what I mean? I do this because I’m young, fly, and flashy. So I'm gon' do this type of stuff. Sometimes I might have on 10 of them. It doesn't make me though.
So you grew up in Miami?
Yeah I grew up in Miami. I grew up in the eye of Miami. If you was in a hurricane—you know how every hurricane that has an eye? I grew up in the eye. Like, the gulliest, the drug using-est, I mean, the mom prostituting for money to keep lights on. Like, that’s Lambo. That’s where I come from. You know I mean? Drug dealing, man. Killing, man. Whoever know, probably raping, man. It was the gutter, man. I come from that. I think you gotta say you proud of where you from, when you know yourself.
I grew up in the eye of Miami. If you was in a hurricane—you know how every hurricane that has an eye? I grew up in the eye. Like, the gulliest, the drug using-est, I mean, the mom prostituting for money to keep lights on. Like, that’s Lambo. That’s where I come from.
When you get to know yourself, you can understand yourself and say, “Hey man, I’m from there. I love that I’m from there. Because obviously if I wasn’t from there I probably wouldn’t have learned what I know to be in front of these cameras. To even make y’all want to come out and see a handsome young man like me. It's cool though. Yeah I’m from Miami.
I heard about neighborhoods like Liberty City, where Luke came up—
That’s where I’m from! I’m from Liberty City. Pork ‘n’ Beans projects, Liberty City—all that. That’s my area. I’m from Liberty City. It was in between Liberty City and Brown Sub [Brownsville] because my grandmother, she stayed in Brown Sub, which was close to Martin Luther King Park. And my auntie that I stayed with as a young kid, she stayed in Liberty City. So both of them were ghetto. Both of them were somewhere you want to make it out and be somebody.
I ain’t going to say it’s the worst place in the world because you got bums sleeping on the ground out here on South Beach, and they probably in a miserable state of mind. My hood could be a hood, but hey man, this ain’t the worst place.
That’s real. I’ve been seeing them out here all weekend.
It be like that. It's just not meant to judge people. You can’t judge people. Just live your life.
Luke came out of there—Live Crew and the Ghetto Style DJs, right?
Yeah, yeah and let me tell you some honest stuff. As big as Luke is for Miami, and I come from the part of Miami where you gots to be up on game. And whatever you’re trying to do, if you ain’t equipped with it, you’re gonna get rolled over. As the music part of Liberty City or Miami, I only knew the history of Luke because he stood out as an intelligent brother to me. And he made the music. He made the girls pop. He made them pop that pussy. He made them do what they do.
But I never knew the real history to be like, “Oh I’m an artist that knows so deep about music.” No, no, no, no, no, I’m building the grind as I go. I’m deep into me. That’ll make me catch the game on however it come and that’s how it go. But Luke did a lot of wonderful stuff, man, and shout out to Luke. He’s a real cool guy. Every time I run into him he always cool. And I’m right there, right up the street from Luke.
So growing up in Miami did you know all the other artists from Miami like Trick [Daddy] and [Rick] Ross? Did you run into them along the way?
I mean I knew Trick because Trick used to come down to Liberty City where I was from. And, you know, the business my family was in, every rapper wanted to be around them. Like every rapper wanted to be them. My family, we was the street rappers. You know I mean? All the rappers knew they had to come through Five-Eight and 15th. That’s in Liberty City. That’s one of the worst streets you can go down.
That’s your corner?
That ain’t my corner. That’s me and my family business spot. That was our business spot at one time, 58 and 15th. You know I mean? It was a hell of a street. It was a lot dead presidents walking on that street. You know I mean? That’s how I knew Trick. Cool rapper, man. I hope his career, you know what I mean, bring back the light on it. Do good, man. That’s to every artist.
Ross was out of Carol City and there was also another guy up there in Carol City that Ross talks about a lot. Cool guy, man. So he was kind of into the business my family was in. So all the rappers wanted to be around him. I never crossed paths with Ross to say I know him but, I knew Ross as an artist, as an entertainer, and as a Black young man that’s making paper. So that’s how I know Ross and he a cool guy to me, man. I love his grind. You know I mean? I’m just man enough to say what’s true. That's all it is. But shout out to him. He’s from Miami and I’m from Miami. I just hope his grind keeps going. Much success to him. Shout out to MMG, man. All them boys over there.
I never crossed paths with Ross to say I know him but, I knew Ross as an artist, as an entertainer, and as a Black young man that’s making paper. So that’s how I know Ross and he a cool guy to me.
I love his grind.
So you mentioned you were incarcerated for a while, was that when you got more focused on music?
That’s when I found out that I could make words go together. I had a lot of time on my hands. I had seven years to do—that’s a blessed number, too. That’s God’s number. Tupac used to love that number, seven. That’s crazy because I’m doing my mixtape on nothing but 2Pac instrumentals and I’m finding a lot of numbers that Pac talked about just right there in my life. Like, I did seven years. I got out in 2007, you know I mean? That was crazy, man. And I take a lot of that stuff for real. And as they get my music they’ll get to know what I’m talking about down the line. So you know [being in jail] gave you a lot of time to think about yourself. I got sexy in there. You know what I mean? A little sexy, a little bit.
In the weight room, huh?
Yeah. I just built up for the womens, you know I mean? Little sexy stuff. South Beach. It was time to myself, it was cool. I got to learn all types of understanding. Learned myself. Look at me, baby. I look good. I did pretty good for myself. But it was cool, man. That’s how I learned to put words together. And them words kept me going.
I used to read a lot of interviews, man. I used to read Biggie—God rest his soul—I used to read some of his interviews, man. I used to read 2Pac interviews. I used to read about when Puff Daddy used to talk to interviewers, Suge Knight, Snoop Dogg—all the guys, man. Even down here, man. When I was away, you had Trick really out here and I used to read some of Trick’s interviews. Even Trina, and some of the females man. Mia X, I used to read her interviews. So I had a lot of time to really prepare myself for this industry, to be able to come out here and make the money out of it, but just be prepared not to get caught into it. So that’s how I learned how to get into this music.