Rolling Stone magazine caught up with rising Harlem rapper A$AP Rocky and spoke to him about his current success with his debut album, "Long.Live.A$AP," how he feels about the album, his career and his future as an artist in general.
"A lot of people were anticipating and waiting on what I'd do next. There were doubters, and there were others who had a lot of faith in me. And I did beyond what they wanted. I'm singing on these records. People think that's Pharrell singing, or they ask me, "Is that Auto-Tune?" But I went beyond what people thought were my limits. It's a masterpiece.
"I did whatever felt right for me. I'm not the best at choosing what's good and what's bad. I wouldn't even know what's a good pop song and what's a bad one. With that said, I wanted to say what's true to me. Some people might say that the Skrillex record was pop, but that was just about the chemistry between me and my boy.
"I feel like everything I do in the hip-hop world has an influence. People don't really notice what I did until somebody else does it. As far as hip-hop goes, I want to continue to make good music, and good art. I don't really follow the state of hip-hop. I listen to old shit. I know that sounds strange, me being a new rapper, but I just can't get down with a lot of the new stuff.
"I feel misunderstood about my art. I feel misunderstood about my fashion. Let's start there. I wore a long shirt in the "F*ckin' Problem" video, and people were saying that I wore dresses. Then there's my image: the gold teeth and the braids. People say he's from Harlem, but he looks like he from Houston, or he looks like he's from Cleveland, or from Cali.
"But it's really about the art. I don't care about anything but the art. Music is supposed to inspire. We don't really want to inspire anymore. We just want to hate on each other. You even catch yourself doing it. There's no more love.
"I'm not gonna say that I'm at the top of the rap game, but I can say I'm at the top of my grind. I'm doing really well to not yet have put out a commercial record. I chose to deal with the underdogs on "1 Train." I could've got the biggest superstars in the rap game, but why do that when you can let the young boys shine?
"I want to do movies. But not only that, I want to be a motivation for people. I want to be an activist and really inspire the hopeless youngbloods. I want to let them know that there's hope out there. Life is a bitch, but there's always hope."