"A$AP Ferg may hail from a block in Harlem notoriously known as Hungry Ham (Hamilton Heights), but that never completely defined him. Whether it be launching clothing and jewelry lines or attending art school, he constantly bobbed and weaved past expectations. As a rapper, unpredictability remains his only calling card. The next member of the A$AP Mob collective to have a solo project, he can slip from gruff, gritty rhymes to soaring singing, and he does so seamlessly. On his A$AP Worldwide released mixtape, Trap Lord, hes got his own musical domain on lock.
Fergs debut [mixtape] will not sound like anything thats out in the music industry right now, assures A$AP Worldwide co-owner, A$AP Yams.
Hip-hop surrounded Ferg from childhood. His father Darold Ferguson owned a Harlem boutique and printed shirts and logos for record labels including Bad Boy Records and luminaries such as Teddy Riley, Heavy D, Bell Biv DeVoe, and more. Even though he immersed himself in music, the younger Ferg pursued fashion at first. Launching Devoni Clothing in 2005, he designed and distributed high-end belts worn by the likes of Chris Brown, Swizz Beatz, and Diggy Simmons. Eventually, his hustle, creativity, and business acumen extended to music.
Trapping means hustling, he explains. I went from painting to making clothes to rapping. I always put myself into everything I do one hundred percent. It doesnt matter what Im working on. I want to perfect everything I do. Success is the only option. They call me 'Trap Lord because my hustle game is impeccable.
Friends since high school, A$AP Rocky recognized that impeccable hustle game and pushed Ferg to get behind the mic as much as possible. In 2010, they teamed up for the viral hits Get High, Kissin Pink, and explosive Ghetto Symphony from Rockys chart-topping major label 2013 debut LONG.LIVE.A$AP.
Rocky is a major reason Im rapping, he reveals. He believes in me and really challenges me. We look up to each other, and I consider him a brother.
The world got its formal introduction to Ferg on the inimitable and irresistible Work. His first single resounds with gutter-fabulous production from Chinza & Flywho he actually found on tumblr while touring with Rocky on Drakes Club Paradise Tour. His impenetrable flow charges through a smoky synth haze, rising to the forefront. Upon its release, the music video quickly racked up over 2 million online views and was dubbed one of the 50 Best Songs of 2012 by tastemaker Complex.com.
About Work, Ferg goes on, Lyrically, its truth. Its a motivational song. I speak where I come from. I wanted talk about real life shit, and thats what it does. Youve got to put in that work.
Also in his arsenal is the sharp and slick Dump Dump. That was inspired by a night in a NYC club, he laughs. Were going to leave it at that. I was there dodging glasses and stuff.
Then, he offers a soulful rumination on life and death, 100 Million Roses. After seeing the film Selena, he became infatuated with the legendary Latina icon and he researched her legacy, learning as much as he possibly could about her. Dedicating the song to Selena and everyone else hes lost personally, Fergs honesty hits hard.
Shes had such an inspiring story. I dedicated '100 Million Roses to her and my dad. I wonder how people would look at my life when I die, and thats what the verse is about. How would people feel? I know Id want a 100 million roses.
Ultimately, Ferg is beginning to leave his own legacy with Trap Lord. I hope people take the good and the bad from what Ive got to say, he concludes. Ive seen so much shit in my life. There were times I ducked bullets at a basketball game, and then I went to a fashion show. Ive experienced depression. Ive experienced triumph. Ive experienced hate. Ive experienced love. You cant hide from this shit though. It builds your character. I learned how to be independent. I made it out of the hood, and now I want go to the top."
via artist's website