Interview by Joe Mueller (@JMtheIndustry)
Photography by Tasha Bleu
The Pacsun pop-up shop in SoHo, New York has seen a lot of action recently. Earlier this summer, the venue was the spot where the Diamond Supply x Been Trill collab was unveiled. This past weekend, RiFF RAFF blessed the venue with an appearance as Biz Markie spun for the crowds that showed up to cop Neff gear. The line of fans there to meet Jody Highroller seemed to never end, and the popular enigma that is RiFF RAFF spent an extra two hours signing shirts, his own portrait on his Neff collab, and at least one ass. We were lucky enough to get some time with him to chop it up and, as usual, the eccentric emcee kept us entertained as soon as he opened his diamond-encrusted mouth. Read the full interview to see his wild thoughts on the upcoming Neon Icon album, how he gets mistaken for Jay Z, and what he plans on doing with his first billion dollars.
Can you talk about the Justin Bieber Versace chain? What’s the story behind the Justin Bieber Versace chain, we need to know this.
[Pulls out chain] It smelled like Bieber at first. It lost the whole Bieber scent—it didn’t lose the power though. It has Bieber in it.
How’d you get it?
We were just hangin’ out after his show.
Are we gonna get a Bieber collabo soon?
Hey, you gotta ask him man. Don’t you think, if it was up to me, we’d have a whole album. It’s like fools sayin “oh when you and Drake gonna drop a song?” If it were up to me it’d be like “Come on, Drake. We gotta do this.” Shit like that, that person gotta take the initiative to do that. I got a song with Big Sean coming soon. Big Sean is getting on.
[Leaves room, returns after a minute] Okay, so Versace chain. Yeah, that’s Versace. Everybody wants to look at this. [Hands over ring] You wanna double check? 'Cause I mean, you should let ‘em know, because this ain’t costume jewelry. Nobody’s wearin' gold plated.
I’m potentially a Richard Branson. I’m not there yet, but I will be. Buy a spaceship and go build a whole 'nother Earth.
What are you rocking? What are you buying these days?
Umm, it depends. I just see somethin and then I’ll get it. I mean, a lot of Neff. But I don’t buy it. I make it. But shit, like these glasses. I didn’t even know they Tom Ford. I seen 'em and I was like damn them shits clean. And then once I put em on everybody started callin' me Jay Z. So then I was like, okay. Me and Jay Z walkin' down the street and it’s like “Yo, Jay Z” and then we both turn around. And now we don’t know who’s who.
What’s the number-one thing in your closet right now that you cannot live without—the one thing that you’re obsessed with?
One thing? Man. Shoes, I guess. But I just, I always buy new shit. That’s one of my main things is I don’t like to wear the same thing twice. You know what I mean? I’m not like one of these rapper guys. I’m more of like a fashion icon. That’s why I got that album Neon Icon comin' out 'cause like people laughin' and all this shit like “ha ha,” but people are so slow man. And they’re so stupid. So when I say that, it’s like they haven’t caught up to the shit I do, like I buy new shit.
I constantly buy—people are like “Damn, why you always talkin' about your jewelry and chain and all this shit?” Because, you ain’t! People ain’t about that type of stuff and I am. I’m 'bout luxury and cars and houses and all this shit. But people don’t understand that until they see it. If you just talk about it and you don’t be about it then people could be like, “oh well he might not be serious.” But there’s a lot of people who maybe wanna have new jewelry and chains and stuff like that, but they can’t afford it at the time. You know what I’m sayin'?
So the only thing I can do is just try to just—as I make more money, spend more money. That’s the only way to prove that you—I mean it’s not like I proved it, it’s just like what I want. Shit, if I had a billion dollars, I’d have a candy private plane. I’d buy an island. I’d do all that shit. I’m potentially a Richard Branson. I’m not there yet, but I will be. Buy a spaceship and go build a whole 'nother Earth.
The dream collabo would be me, Drake, and Justin Bieber to go on tour and make a whole album. And then go on tour. Back-to-back tour buses. Candy tour buses. Yeah, a world-wide tour—300 day tour. We only got 65 days off.
Have you been reached out to by any designers?
You mean like besides Neff? Like fashion designers?
Yeah, like maybe Versace?
Man, I wish. Definitely.
Would you do it?
Of course, why wouldn’t I? Don’t I do everything? I can rarely say no.
What about modeling? I could see Riff Raff on the runway.
I could do it. I just gotta stop eatin carbs and I gotta get real skinny. I gotta be like 99 pounds.
What’s your workout plan like on the road?
Damn. I do like 100 pushups.
In a row?
I mean, no. Like 20 pushups, and then eat a ham sandwich. And then smoke somethin’ and then do like 100 curls.
Could you beat Master P in one-on-one right now?
Damn, I dunno if he’s been hoopin'. Okay, let’s say if I had a month, I could. But if like I had a month to train, he had a month to train, or whatever the case is, then I could.
What’s your post game like?
I don’t have to post up. I got a cross-over. And threes. All I do is shoot threes and shoot free-throws, 'cause whenever I drive, somebody’s gonna have to foul me. So I’m like threes and free-throws.