In a room at the Hotel Eventi (851 Avenue of the Americas) in New York’s Chelsea neighborhood, Amber Rose stood on a table on the balcony. A camera captured the moment. Rose was in the city to promote two new flavors of Smirnoff Vodka: Whipped Cream and Fluffed Marshmallow.
Complex’s interview occurred the day after Kanye West dedicated a performance of “Runaway” to Rose, his former flame. She wore a clunky gold charm bracelet that punctuated her hand gestures like a small clinking chandelier. Her black jacket included more panther faces in the print than would be reasonable for any other person. Animated and warm, she showed no signs of media fatigue, and gladly answered all questions.
Interview by Ross Scarano (@RossScarano)
Complex: What’s the most dangerous thing about whipped cream?
Amber Rose: The Smirnoff flavored vodka? It tastes like candy. You mix it with orange soda and it tastes like a Creamsicle.
Which could be dangerous. Potentially.
It’s all about drinking responsibly. Even if it tastes really good, you have to do it in moderation.
You’ve been described as a nightlife maven. What does it take to become a nightlife maven?
One of my jobs is to travel the world, going to super cool parties. They pay me to show up, dance, mingle with people. When you go to a party, you want to hear great music. I’m a judge on Master of the Mix, and I judge on the party aspect—if they can rock a party. If they can keep the energy up. I’m not a DJ—I don’t know how to scratch or mix records, but I know how to party and I know music. I grew up in Philly; it’s a very musical city. My house was full of music.
What song will dead a room every time?
Top 40, something that was out six months before, something that was already in heavy rotation. We heard it a million times in the club. Just don’t play it. It’s not anyone's favorite song anymore.
Who should drink marshmallow-flavored vodka?
Everyone. It’s not specifically for girls or guys, white people or black people.
I typically drink bourbon, so this is a tough sell for me.
I wish we had some; I’d make a drink for you. It doesn’t taste like vodka. If you want a super strong drink, drink your bourbon. But if you want to feel mellow and sip something sweet, drink this.
What prompted you to participate in the NOH8 campaign?
I believe that you can love anyone. I’ve had relationships with women, I’ve had relationships with men. I don’t think you should be judged based on who you find attractive. Especially guys—gay men, they really have it hard sometimes. So I wanted to represent people that are open to love.
What’s the best thing about dating Wiz?
Wiz is a true gentleman. He doesn’t even belong in this century. He’s out of the 1800s. He’s loving, talented, inspiring. He makes you want to be a better person. You know, he’s a hippie, all about peace, love, and positivity. No matter who you are, Wiz’ll be super nice to you. A homeless guy on the street—Wiz will throw him a hundred dollars. Just because. He’d say, “You don’t know what that guy is going through.”
Has he ever put his jacket down over a puddle for you?
We’ve never been in that situation. But he would.
I’ve never been in that situation either.
You’ll find that person and you’ll want to do it.
Has he ever taken you to Pittsburgh?
Yes. A million times.
What’d you think?
Pittsburgh is different.
Does it seem sad to you?
Yes. And I’m sorry. It’s very depressing. It’s a city, but it’s not a city. No one is out. No one is outside.
How scary are the accents?
I haven’t been around too many, but every now and then Wiz will be like, “Baby, I have to get in the shower.” [Amber pronounces the word in Yinzer fashion, removing the vowels so that it becomes a mush of consonants: shwr.] It’s cute.
Have you ever gone out to bars or clubs there?
Hell. No. Hell, no. Uh-uh. I’ve never been out in Pittsburgh. That’s Wiz’s hometown; people there grew up with him, so they won’t fan out as much as other cities would. But for me to go out to a club in Pittsburgh, I think it’d be too much. It’s such a small city; they don’t get celebrities like that. I don’t really like that kind of attention. It’s overwhelming. And I don’t really go out much anymore unless it’s for work. That’s literally my job. Do you want to go to work on your day off?
Do you not enjoy it anymore?
Sometimes. If the party is really dope, if the music is really dope. But a lot of my parties are in little cities in the States. Places in Utah, North Carolina. I go in, I have to take a million pictures. I really like to dance, but I don’t even have time for that. At those events, it’s not about me; it’s about fans, my Rose Buds and Rose Studs.
What’s the wildest night of drinking you’ve ever had and can legally tell me about?
I was never the type of girl to get wasted. I always wanted to look cute, so I couldn’t get super wasted and belligerent. I would have two drinks, get a little buzzed, then dance all night. I’m not a raging partier.
How many drinks before you get sloppy?
Two. After two, I’ll be like, “It’s time to slow down.” But a lot of people don’t do that. They’ll take shots and shots and shots. Then it just hits ‘em real quick and they’re done.
If you could remove one food from the world, what would it be?
Cilantro. When I eat cilantro, it’s like someone sprayed perfume down my throat. It closes up my throat, even if there’s only a little piece. I like Mexican food, and I’ll go out to a Mexican restaurant and tell them, “Look, I will die if you get cilantro in my food.” Then there’s always that one little piece that falls in and I gag.
Have you ever argued with kitchen staff over this?
Yeah. I’ll be like, “I’m literally about to sue the fuck out of you guys and own this restaurant. I told you 85 times that I’m allergic to cilantro and you bring me an entire plate of it.” I’ve went off on so many people. I will own this restaurant if you put cilantro on my food.
You have a number of tattoos, but I don’t have any. But I would like to have one. How do I decide?
Start out with something meaningful, maybe your mom’s name. Maybe something that you love. Journalism—something representing that.
What should I avoid?
Avoid paw prints on your upper thigh. [Laughs.] This is my first tattoo. They’re walking up my thigh, and they’re horrible. I was 15 and there was a boy in my neighborhood doing tattoos for everybody so I didn’t need ID or anything. And remember the group Total? They were big at the time. I saw the paw prints on her leg in the video and I said, “Oh my god, that’s so fresh. I love it.” But mine don’t look like that; they look like shit.
What tattoo are your happiest with?
My "Cam." [Shows tattoo of the name “Cam” on her finger.] I’ve had it done three times, because it keeps fading. It stands for “Cameron,” which is Wiz’s first name. He brings me so much happiness.
Do you think you’ll be together forever?
I never believed in that before. You know, I thought shit happens, men cheat. But I don’t think that anymore. I think that Wiz and I will grow old together, have a bunch of babies.
Do you think he’ll ever stop smoking?
No. I don’t smoke weed, but he’s happy all the time. He’s never in a bad mood. [Weed] prevents cancer. I can’t say anything bad about it.
So he’ll be 90, still smoking, and you’ll be there, holding his hand?
Who was the last person you sincerely complimented?
I do that to everyone. All the time, all day. I’m a Libra. If someone compliments me, I’ll say something nice to them. I like to give out compliments.
Could you give me a compliment?
Yeah. I really like your style. And I like your demeanor. I can tell you’re a good person.
I’m sure you’ve been asked, but I’d like to know how you feel about what happened last night at Kanye’s show.
I’ll say this—I didn’t even know about it. This is my 50th interview today and every single person has asked me—it made me go see what the hell they were talking about, because I don’t keep up on the current events of Kanye. I don’t look him up. A lot of [what's said] is just negativity and I don’t like to bring that energy into my life. But I did look at it and he said that, he said, “When I said that I didn’t like your dress, I was an asshole. When I said that I didn’t like your hair, I was an asshole.” And he was an asshole. He was. I feel like he gets that know, and he’s remorseful about being an asshole to me. But he called me an incredible person, and I take that as an apology. And if it was an apology, I forgive him. For being an asshole. I don’t hold any grudges. I don’t hate him. I want him to find a girl and for him to treat her better than he treated me. The next girl, she doesn’t deserve that. I found pure happiness with Wiz. Why wouldn’t I want that for Kanye? I want everyone to have that, to feel the way I feel about Wiz.
Interview by Ross Scarano (@RossScarano)