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Trippie Redd is in his own world. With over four billion streams to date; the Canton, Ohio rapper and singer has one of the most dedicated fanbases in the rap game. In 2017, he unleashed “Love Scars” and its music video currently hails over 83.8 million views on YouTube and counting — and not even on his channel! In addition to the sonically appealing soundscape in his music, it’s his lyrical content about life and love that audiences can relate to. The visual for his second standout single, “POLES1469,” which features 6ix9ine, clocks in at almost double the views: over 149 million.
In 2017, “Dark Knight Dummo” featuring Travis Scott arrived as the lead single to his highly anticipated debut album, Life’s A Trip, which yields incredible energy that can only be experienced at his live shows. If there’s one word to describe Trippie, it’s versatile.
Now at 20 years old, Trippie has a few more plaques, a few more Billboard-charting records, and a few more followers (over 7.6 million on Instagram). Born, Michael Lamar White IV, he could care less about the accolades or numbers. He makes music because he genuinely loves doing it and he knows his fans do, too.
Most recently, he unleashed his third studio album, !, a title dedicated to his good friend XXXTentacion who was shot and killed in June of last year. REVOLT caught up with a much more mature Trippie Redd, but he still carries a zero f*cks given attitude. Read below as he details his favorite memory with XXX, his endless plaques, his favorite Lil Wayne song, and favorite songs off of his new LP.
! is charting high on Billboard 100. How does that make you feel?
It’s whatever. It’s cool.
That doesn’t phase you at all?
Not really. It did good. Ain’t a problem with it. I don’t looking into it like that. I just want to put the music out and give it to the fans.
How long were you working on !?
I start working on a new project every time I finish one. So, about a year for real.
When did you realize ! was ready?
About two or three months ago. Just having all of the pieces to the puzzle. Every song was different... There were different sides of me that nobody [has] ever really heard.
Your other projects are personal also. What different sides did you show?
This one is more [about] me living my life. Just vibin’, happy and chillin’. I only [have] two love songs on it.
Are you in love?
Yeah (smiles and looks at Coi Leray).
You mentioned before that the album title, !, is a tribute to XXXtentacion. What’s the fondest memory you shared with him?
We were arguing over... Naruto. It’s an anime game on Xbox... He was mad because I whipped his ass in the game (laughs). He was sick. It was at my old crib in Hollywood Hills. I mean he was fire, but I was cheating. There was this character that [had] birds, and you could endlessly throw them. I just kept throwing them while he was trying to hit me. I guess he couldn’t stop it.
That’s a dope (14 pendant) chain. Is that XXX on it?
Yeah that’s XXX, and my brother Oomp who passed away in a car accident. Coi got me this chain with the butterfly on it.
What do you feel when you perform ‘Fuck Love’ at your shows?
Energy. Everybody’s energy shifts. It just is crazy. It’s a different vibe performing that song.
What’s your favorite song to perform? Your shows are lit.
‘Wish’ and ‘Dark Knight Dummo.’ They bring a whole different type of vibe to the crowd... I don’t know how to explain it. You gotta be there to see it.
On the opening track, you say, ‘I can’t keep focusing on anybody, I have to focus on myself.’ What were you going through?
Nothing. The songs that I make don’t really apply to my life. I make them for other people... I’m just trying to go through different vibes. I don’t want to make the same shit… it’s hard to explain. It [gets] hard in the studio trying to come up with different concepts... You [have to] put yourself in other people’s shoes or surround yourself [with] people who...can put a different type of vibe in [your] mind. I go off of other people’s energy. I make my songs ultimately for people to relate to them, and that’s a concept everybody can relate to.
How has music been a form of therapy for you?
Shit, [I’m] happy. I make music and [my fans] keep me going, honestly.
What keeps the core Trippie Redd fanbase coming back?
Me (chuckles). The way I carry myself and the way I [make] music, they fuck with it.
I pulled up to his house and gave him the song. He was working on something for [Born 2 Rap]. [That project] was hard. After he [finished], I pulled up ‘Immortal’ and he was fucking with it. He instantly started going.
How did you guys link initially?
His son liked my music... Through that, he just fucked with me on some music shit. He liked my music, so he reached out to me before.
He’s been in the game for a minute. Is there anything you learned from working with him?
His personality is cool. He’s just a good person. That’s what I learned ultimately. He’s a good dude.
That’s dope. So, what are three things you need in the studio at all times?
Do you have producers that you like to work with?
C.N.O.T.E. says he gauges the artist’s mindset in the studio. How did he gauge yours?
We play Xbox and everything together online, and shit like that. I’m personally cool with bro.
I know artists tend to have their own favorite songs that aren’t singles. Which records mean the most to you on !?
I like ‘Snake Skin’ and ‘I Try’ more than any other songs. They’re just my favorites.
Talk about your relationship with Coi Leray. How do you guys push each other to be more creative?
We’re with each other all the time. So, it’s like instinct for us to vibe on some other shit and come up with stuff together. [Coi] always helps me with my [work], and I put my input in hers. We really just be chillin’, vibing, having fun. Normal shit.
What did it mean to get Coi on this album?
Shit, it meant everything. It was fire. I love the song [‘Everything BoZ’]. It’s one of my favorite songs on there, too.
How has Lil Wayne influenced your music?
He was just the start of being versatile. He always just killed any beat he gets on. He was still on some creative shit. It always inspired me and made me look at music differently. At least from growing up and seeing him do his thing, it was just amazing to watch.
Favorite song by Weezy?
‘Nightmares Of The Bottom.’ The metaphors are crazy. It’s crazy, the whole song is metaphors.
You’re only 20. What are some goals for yourself as an artist at this point in your career?
I really want to continue to make music for my fans. Elevate, get more plaques. Conquer more areas in music.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Successful. More successful than I am now. Way more.
What advice do you have for aspiring Trippie Redds?
Ultimately to just be themselves. Stay on their craft. Keep working. Do what makes sense. Always follow yourself and your gut feeling. Do what you got to, to inspire.
Anything else you want to let us know?
Don’t do crack.