GUTTA WORLD had the chance to hook up with Young Money’s Gudda Gudda for an exclusive in depth interview. Getting the word on the true Gudda Gudda, everything from the success of his debut mix tape Guddaville and the launch of Back 2 Guddaville, to him hustlin’ to make it in the rap game and who really influenced him to become the rapper we blowin’ our speakers up with to now.
GW: Let’s just start it off, when did you know that music was something youwere going to pursue seriously?
GUDDA: I probably realized that maybe like ten years ago. Basically I use to be on the road wit Lil’Wayne a lot, I use to just travel wit him. And he wanted to start his own record company and basically he was looking for a bunch of artists and he found a couple of artists from out in the city in New Orleans ya know what I mean, and during that process he was like man why don’t you just try and write raps, ya know. He’s like you got a lot to talk about and you’ve been through a lot, he’s like why don’t you just try and write raps and try an make something, so I was like aight. So I tried it out and we started puttin mixed tapes out and I started to build a buzz for myself. And the rest is history.
GW: That’s how you became a part of Young Money, you were from the very beginning?
GUDDA: Yeah yeah. I actually was one of the people that was…it was three of us in a room when we started Young Money. I’ve been there from the real beginning of Young Money.
GW: Did you plan on becoming a rapper or did you have other plans?
GUDDA: Oooh no, I was knee deep in the streets, I wasn’t even thinking about rappin that was the last thing. I dropped out of school when I was in the ninth grade and had my kid when I was sixteen. So you know I was really runnin around just tryin to get money! I definitely wasn’t thinking about a career at all, until he brought it to my attention, ya know what I mean. I always did a little music, I always loved be around music. I use to sit in the studio wit him days at a time. Every time he cord something he’d come to me and be like whatcha you think about this ya know, cause he know I listen to music a lot and he come to me to critic his music. Ya know I always did have a love for music but I never thought I’d be doin music, at that point back then, ten years ago.
GW: If you weren’t doing music right now, what do you think you’d be doing?
GUDDA: The same thing I was doing back then, probably hustling.
GW:You grew up in New Orleans and it sounds like it was pretty tough.
GUDDA: Tough for everybody in New Orleans ya know what I mean, like everybody know the story about New Orleans, every man for himself. Ihad a kid at a early age so I was just out there tryin’ to get this money by any means necessary, so that’s what it was.
GW: From what you’ve gone through from the beginning with money and everything, what’s been your biggest obstacle you had to overcome to get your start in the music industry?
GUDDA: Just making that transition ya know what I mean. At first it was just one foot in one foot out. When I first started rappin, even though I had people that built a following I still didn’t know if that’s what I wanted to do, ya know because money wasn’t comin’ in. It was like people knew who I was, everyone knew who I was it just felt like I was makin more money hustling then I was rappin shit. That was a hard transition for me to make, from jumpin out of the streets to getting into the music.
GW: Were you thinking maybe I should quit this [music] and go back to hustling?
GUDDA: Actually at some point I was still hustling and rappin, ya know what I mean. So it was really like one foot in one foot out. They’d be in the studio and I wouldn’t show up, for weeks because I was tryin to get it. That was the hardest transition tryin to make it all the way out of the streets and get focused on my music.
GW: When your not in the studio, what are you doing?
GUDDA: If I’m not in the studio then I probably on the road doin shows, if I’m not doin shows then I’m spending time with my kid or hanging out with the homies, ya know just regular people stuff. Ya know I don’t do nuttin to much, I don’t like clubin’ to much. I only go out if I’m paid to be there, so I don’t do to much clubin’. So I just chill out with my family ya know and just kick back.
GW: I think people will be surprised to hear that, I think they expect you to be a crazier partier and clubber and the fact that you don’t like doin that…
GUDDA: Yeah, I don’t like doin that because I have to do it so much. By just bein my job I’m always in a club like at least two or three times a week, ya know if the wallet gets dead ya know what I mean…at this point in my life I’m more comfortable wit just chillin’ wit my family and spending time with my kid. By me being gone so much and bein away from my kid, when I’m home I like to be wit my kid and hang out.
GW: Who or what is your biggest influence as an artist?
GUDDA: Wayne! I mean basically he’s hands on he taught me everything about this music. He literally taught me how to rap. Ya know what I mean, when I wrote my first rap I didn’t know how to stop, where to stop, I didn’t know what sixteen bars was, I didn’t know what a hook was, I didn’t know nothing he had to explain all that to me. I’d come in with these long raps, two three sheets long of raps! He’d be like where you goin start rappin at, where’s your hook at? He’d be like you got to format this, you got to make it sixteen bars here a eight bar chorus another sixteen bars here another chorus then another sixteen bars, he taught me all that kind of stuff and still telling me how to improve as a lyrists too. Don’t use this many words, you can short
that out by doin this, he really taught me how to rap. I’m really his protégé. For real.
GW: You have your Guddaville mix tape and your getting ready for Back 2 Guddaville. What’s goin on with that? When can we expect it?
GUDDA: Actually I’m wrappin it up now. I just realized today, I was ridin in my truck wit one of my homies ya know and we were listenin to all the songs I had recorded and a couple of days ago I was feelin like I was missin a lot of songs, but I have em’ on so many different cd’s and I was goin through my disc changer and I listened to all three of them and was like its just seventeen of em’ right here. I mean solid songs not bullshit songs, it could be the mix tape right here. But I mean I do want to add a few touches to it. Basically its done I’m just waitin on a couple features and I’m goin knock out like two more joints by myself and that’s a wrap.
GW: What should the fans expect?
GUDDA: I mean I named it Back 2 Guddaville because it was like I got such a good response from the Guddaville mix tape, I just wanted to take them back to Guddaville. Ya know I didn’t want to leave that place. So basically if you were a fan of the Guddaville mix tape and you have the mix tape, still listenin to the mix tape, your gonna love Back 2 Guddaville on a whole another level. Because I took this one to another level, its on the same content its just on a whole another level as far as the features, better songs, my lyrics got better. I grow as an artist so at this point ya know what I mean, I think they’ll like this.
GW: It actually means something, like Guddaville was just a good place that you don’t want to leave there and you want to keep the fans there, but you’ve takin it to another level.
GUDDA: Right, right. I’m just trying to take it up a notch. I don’t want them to think I’m leaving Guddaville, that level I was on when I made Guddaville ya know what I mean. I’m at a different space in life now from when I first made Guddaville, but I’m still in the mind frame as when I first made Guddaville. The contents should be similar.
GW: Who are some of the features on Back 2 Guddaville?
GUDDA: As of right now I got Wocka on there, of course Birdman, that Young Money family. Wayne of course. I got a bunch of other joints with other people but I’m not sure if I’m going to use it for my mix tape yet, so I don’t really want to call it out. I gotta a few features on it ya know. But the for sure ones will be Wocka, Jules Santana, Baby of course and the Young Money family. That’s what it is so far.
GW: If you could explain the meaning of Guddaville in one word, what would it be?
GUDDA: In one word…to me, to me, a masterpiece.
GW: What’s in your Mp3 player right now?
GUDDA: Right now I got Wiz Khalifa old mix tapes, Burn After Rolling, I still to that lot, when I’m on the airplane I listen to his mix tapes a lot. Of course I got Gucci in there, all of Wayne anything Wayne all the Young Money stuff. All my new music that nobody even heard yet. I listen to that like twenty five times a day just to critic my own music so see if I need to fix something ya know.
GW: With everything that you and Wayne have been through and your listening to his music all the time you two must be like best friends…?
GUDDA: I mean just like you said, it’s like we best friends like brothers ya know what I mean. Like I just talk to him yesterday like two times on the phone. He call me from jail, we just talk about regular stuff ya know what I mean. We talk about business too, but most of the conversation will be about regular stuff. Ya know how da kids doin, how da family doin, how you doin, you alright. And then we get to, whatcha gonna record? Then we talk about the music or whatever. But its more like brothers ya know what I mean we talk about family first make sure each other straight. I ask him if I aight, if he need anything and he say the same thing back to me. Like brothers for real.
GW: Your holding up pretty well then, talking to him everyday, every week?
GUDDA: Yeah I get a phone call from him like two usually three times a week. Ya know we talk a lot. He was telling me he reads all of his fan mail he get, that’s what he do. To pass time he works out and reads every bit of his fan mail. So any fan that’s sending him mail, he’s reading it!
GW: What’s your favorite social network?
GUDDA: I ain’t real big on the computer thing, ya know the whole cyber thing. I do Twitter that’s like the only thing I do besides check my email. Twitter is the main thing, I try and send out one tweet a day. Then I pick one day were I’ll reply to fans, reply to the ladies and everybody. But I don’t tweet every much, I’m not big on the cyber thing. I don’t do the live Ustreams, I don’t do any of that, that was never my style ya know. But there’s Guddaville.com, it keeps you updated on everything and not just me either but everything Young Money. If Nicki Minaj puts something out, if Drake puts something out, my people that handle Guddaville.com will make sure everything is put up there. You can go up there an get all my show dates, know all the cities I’m gonna be in, let you know the location of where I’m gonna be at and just keep updated with all my music.
GW: From everything that you’ve learned from Wayne in the last ten years, do you plan on mentoring anybody?
GUDDA: I am, I already do that. Ya know its not on the level where I put them out there already but its like, I already started doin that. I have someone I talk to and give them the exact same game that was given to me ya know what I mean. I have people around that I do that with already.
GW: Are you going to go on tour? Or are you just going to do shows and appearances?
GUDDA: I just do shows and appearances right now, I’m not on tour right now. Just doing spot dates and different appearances and stuff in different cities, there’s no tour I’m puttin together right now. I believe we’re suppose to be putting together some kind of Young Money tour together soon, don’t quote me on that but that’s what the talks are about right now. If not in a few months I will be putting together a Guddaville tour together.
GW: Will you be touring the United States only or are you gonna take it international to?
GUDDA: Everywhere. Actually people are calling from everywhere. I was surprised about how many people and promoters are calling to try and book me for different things. Ya know I didn’t know the mix tape got that far out, until I realized how many downloads it actually had. It’s over a million downloads so really a lot of people have the music, so a lot of different promoters all for different things. Even your putting together a tour you don’t want it where you have two shows this week then two show the following week. I want to put it together where I’ll have three or four shows a week for a month straight and I’m going to call that the Guddaville tour, so ya know. I’m just tryin to work it out now get all the bases together and talk to all the
promoters and just tryin’ to make it a big tour. United States, overseas, everywhere.
GW: Are you thinking about doing a solo album anytime soon?
GUDDA: Of course, of course. I’m probably try and do something by the end of this year. If not the end of this year then the top of nextyear.
GW: What do you think you’ll title it?
GUDDA: I don’t even have a title of it yet. Like when I put Guddaville out, it almost became an album. The response from it was so big from it, it almost turned into an album. We were almost going to make it an album but you know it was like to much rushin’ it. I just want to keep puttin out good music and just build it up to the point where it’s a real album. I don’t want to put a mix tape out and throw three extra songs on it and say here’s my album. That’s not how I want to put my first album out.
GW: Did it surprise you how successful Guddaville became?
GUDDA: Yeah it really did. Yeah it did. I knew the music was good, I was real confident in the music when I put Guddaville together. Because I analyze my music for months. I don’t let nobody hear the music. My manager, the deejay’s I work with, you can ask all of them, they didn’t hear Guddaville until two days before we put it out. So I sit down and analyze my own music, for months maybe even months and weeks at a time, however long that I think is right. I’m talkin about from the order of the songs, to lyrics, to who’s on the songs, like I got to anaylze everything. I gotta make sure the cd flows right, I make sure everything is just right before I hand it off to anybody. It’s the exact same process that I’m doin now with Back 2 Guddaville. Like nobody has heard anything off Back 2 Guddaville, my manager might of hear five or six joints. But nobody has heard nothing, I don’t want to hear nobodies opinion. Because someone’s opinion could make you do something that’s wrong. Ya know what I mean, I’d rather do that and have everything fall on me. If I do wrong I want it to fall on me, not because someone else made me do another move. I just keep my music to myself, analyze it until I think its perfect or near perfect or perfect in my eyes. Ya know what I mean, then I give it to my people and my family and be like aight hear it is.
GW: How did you come up with name Gudda Gudda?
GUDDA: That name was given to me. Ya know my home boys use to call me that. That was before the rap, my home boys use to call me Gudda. I’m a junior first, like my whole family calls me Jay. Like I was never called by my government name, which is Carl. I’ve neva been called by my government name, except when I was in elementary school my teachers use to call me Carl. But from me bein a junior my whole family call me Jay my whole life, like nobody in my family called me by my government name. So Jay was my name in the streets, my homies use to call me Jay Gudda. So when I started rappin I just kept the name. I forgot how the extra Gudda got added on but I believe Wayne stuck it in a rap a long time ago, something about ‘my homie Gudda Gudda..’ And then people started sayin where’s Gudda Gudda at, I want to see Gudda Gudda and I just stuck with it.
GW: Is there anything else you’d like the fans to know?
GUDDA: Basically Rebirth in stores now. Of course Young Money album in stores now. Thanks for the support. Tryin’ to push them platinum. Back 2 Guddaville comin soon, don’t have a date on it yet but its almost finished so it will be out sometime in the next few weeks. Follow me on Twitter @imguddagudda. And check my website out Guddaville.com updated on all my info.
GW: Thanks for hitting us up on GUTTA WORLD.
GUDDA: Yeah yeah yeah, I got you! I’m all in lets do it!
By: Tiff Mac