New Interview: A$AP Rocky Talks About The Culture In Harlem, His Brother Being Murdered, A$AP Mob Being Compared To Wu Tang & More

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The Guardian UK recently traveled to Harlem, New York from across the pond to visit Rapper A$AP Rocky. While walking through Harlem World (123rd Street), Rocky and the UK publication touched on various topics including living in and the culture in Harlem, A$AP Mob, his father being arrested, oldest brother being murdered, respecting women and his crew being compared to the Wu Tang Clan. Below are some excerpts:

On Living in Harlem and the culture:

Well, you know, living in Harlem we’re grungy,” says Rocky when asked about his home turf. “Harlem has always had its culture; you think of the Harlem renaissance and the 90’s when hardcore hip-hop hit, but then you got the 70s when there was a lot of pimping, then the 80’s when crack hit. We have a rebel mindstate in Harlem. To be rebellious is not that easy these days because of all the penalties and consequences. But we’ve dealt with consequences and penalties since day one.

On him and his crew lyrical flow, style and southern sound:

“We’re a collective of all the music genres,” says Rocky with typical confidence. “John Lennon is the fucking coolest dude on the planet and I don’t care what nobody says. It’s not just rap. But we grew up in this shit. We are who we are today because we listen to people from the south and the west, as well as New York. This is how our generation raps now.”

On his father relocating his family to Pennsylvania in the late 90’s and succeeded in getting rich off drugs, until he was arrested:

When he fell off, that’s when it got difficult,” says Rocky. “It just quickly switched to the worst predicament.”

On his oldest brother being murdered:

He was killed just about three blocks down,” says Rocky. We’re on Frederick Douglass Boulevard and 114th Street, and he is visibly shaken. “Exactly three blocks down. He was murdered. He was extorting this guy and the guy had enough of his shit. One day he tried to mess with the dude again and the guy literally shot him through his pocket. He just died there. No one came through.

On using the word b***h and respecting women:

“I just think it’s not necessary to disrespect women,” he says. “Of course we use the word ‘bitch’ but that’s just how we were raised. Where I’m from I use both ‘n***a’ and ‘bitch’. But I call my white friends ‘n***a’. I have white members in A$AP. We’re all family.”

On A$AP Mob being compared to Wu Tang Clan:

Everybody compares us to the Wu-Tang Clan. That’s an honor, don’t you think?” says Rocky, flashing that smile again. “Our plan is to stay productive, create a legacy and have longevity. Because America is changing. I can promise you that in the next five years people are going to get their priorities straight and their lives are going to be fun. I’m gonna make sure everyone stays young. I mean, look at us. We’re kids and this shit is just Harlem.”

Source: The Guardian UK

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Donovan is the CEO and Editor-In-Chief of For all general inquiries please email Donovan has a BA in Journalism & Media Studies from the prestigious Rutgers University. He's currently studying entertainment and fashion law.