Fourth times' the charm! Florida rapper Plies is about a week away from dropping his fourth album, Goon Affiliated (out June 8) and he's already racked up quite an impressive list of collaborators. Not only is the MC featured on Usher's monster hit "Hey Daddy" and Young Jeezy's "Lose My Mind" but he's rapped with Ne-Yo, Akon, Jamie Foxx, Ludacris, Chris Brown and others already.
About to go on tour and with his single "Becky" featured on The Hills, he caught up with UsMagazine.com and let me know who he really wants to get down with. Simon Cowell would definitely raise an eyebrow to this one! Read on...
UsMagazine.com: Going way back, what initially sparked your interest in becoming a rapper and the music industry?
Plies: Being from Fort Meyers, Fla., music was never really big on our radar. More street activity and athletics was the thing to do, but I kind of got dragged into the situation. I had a brother who was incarcerated at the time, and was just trying to do something positive when he came home and music was the solution. Music kind of happened by accident for me.
Us: Are there artists you are inspired by and maybe want to work with in the future?
Plies: I always bring this up to people and they think I'm just teasin'‚ but Susan Boyle is probably at the top of my list. A lot of people look at that as a far-fetched feature or collaboration. From a business standpoint, I watched what she was able to do and create through her own story and it always interested me.
Us: Who are some other artists featured on your new album, Goon Affiliated?
Plies: I got Trey Songz, Fabolous and Keri Hilson on this album. So, I had an opportunity to keep it right in the middle, I didn't want it to be overloaded with features but I wanted to work with people who had a respect for their craft as well. I feel like this fourth album is so well-rounded.
Us: How has fame and notoriety affected your personal life?
Plies: It made me pay more attention to detail than before. Coming from the streets, my lifestyle was more wildcat-ish if I could call it that. It just was a little bit more unstructured. So much goes on in the position that I'm currently in that requires me to not only analyze the situation totally different than before I got my big break. [My notoriety] definitely enhances my financial situation. It's just making me look at business and life in a total different perspective than I did before.
Us: As far as the future goes, what are your plans as far as touring?
Plies: My main focus is to continue to make the streets happy and to continue to do things that are not only musically driven but to help back and give back to my people who need me right now in a trying time. In regards to touring, those situations have to be broken down really well and anytime you put yourself on a ticket with two, three, four other artists and do 24 or 25 cities, a lot of times egos are involved in those situations. I've got my own personal Goon Affiliated tour, got 26 cities confirmed. That's going to kick off two weeks after the album comes out. It is my first headlining tour. I'm pumped!
Us: What excites you most about collaborating with other artists?
Plies: I get more of a thrill out of working with un-established artists than I do big time artists for a lot of different reasons. It's more challenging to me to be able to work with no-name artists and create a masterpiece than ride the coattails of someone else. I had an opportunity to be a part of the Young Jeezy situation, got a big record with him that's on his album called Losing My Mind that's on its way to No. 1. I had an opportunity to work with Usher on his last single "Hey Daddy," which is the No. 1 record in the country, so the doors are always open for those opportunities but I like to try to bring new artists as well.