Twenty-nine-year-old Baltimore native Caddy Da Don rhymed his first words in a place most entertainers don't expect to showcase their talents: behind bars. Hours with nothing to do but stare at four walls was what the rhymer -- born David Rice -- needed to hone a skill that came about less than six years ago. Caddy's a free man these days, with his sights set on reaching the same pinnacle of success that rap juggernauts before him have obtained. He's got a long road to travel to achieve what veterans like Jay-Z and the Notorious B.I.G. have -- two artists he says influence his sound -- but he's off to a good start. A current mixtape, 'Powder, Meth, Blow,' is out for public consumption and a forthcoming untitled debut album is in the works. For the 'Grindin' on Me' creator, which serves as his first single, his work ethic is self-made. "I'm from the streets," Caddy tells The BoomBox. "I represent the come-up, the struggle. You go from nothing to something and keep on pushing without looking back." Read on as the motivated money-lover discusses Hov's impact on his business plan, his definition of an "R.N." and the surprise R&B crooner he's locked down for his debut.

What is your day-to-day activity like with a career as a rapper?

I'm constantly writing, performing more and more shows, booking more club appearances and grinding.

Are you currently working on an EP or album?

I'm currently still working on my album. I have several features on there. We're just putting together a real good quality represent Baltimore properly. So we can make an impact on the industry. On the mixtape, I wanted to hold my own so I didn't do any features. As far as the album coming, we have features such as Trey Songz, Yo Gotti, we're looking to link with Wale. We got a lot in the makings. It's just to name a few. We actually still working on the album so we just getting started.


The video for your single 'Grindin' on Me' highlights the scene in Miami. Why did you decide to go that route rather than showcase your hometown of Baltimore?

The song is geared more toward me, females [and] traveling. I like to enjoy myself. It just had a Miami-feel to the song. And that's what the song is about. The song wasn't about my hometown. I rep my hometown to the fullest and I have several videos repping my hometown. It's a grown and sexy song, and it had that summery feel like Miami. Miami is beautiful and that's why we chose that location.

You look to Biggie and Jay-Z as inspirations. What about their respective careers inspires you?

Coming up, that's what I mainly listened to -- Biggie, Jay-Z. I admire they craft -- I actually admire Jay-Z's business sense. I look at this as a business. I know there's not too many artists that look at it as that. They just sort of adapt to the fame and maybe that's what they settle for. I'm in it for the long run. I love money.

The business model Jay-Z has demonstrated is one that you look towards. What other skills do you bring to your own career -- for example, do you have a degree in a particular field that would help you get to his level of success?

Well, I consider myself an R.N. That's just a real n---- that can do anything he puts his mind to. I'm into a lot of things. I like cars, fashion. I done did a lot of things in my hustle. I was even part owner of a clothing line when I first started in music.

Watch Caddy Da Don's 'Powder Meth Blow'

Have you created your own record label?

I'm signed to my own record label, which consists of ownership by Tony Austin. Monarch Entertainment Group.

I know you got your start in 2005, when you began rapping. What have you been doing to make people aware of your movement since then?

I'm just pushing hard. We're just getting the Internet presence as big as possible. My music is reaching the masses, we're shipping out CDs. I'm traveling. Basically just working and grinding. I'm putting myself out there, putting the legwork in and doing what it takes to really launch an album. I got a good team.

What are you trying to showcase with your music that's different from the many rappers that are in the industry?

I believe I'm bring the true stories and raw talent. I just found out I could rap like six years ago, seven years ago. And for me to actually have this opportunity to use this as a job and a profession, I'm just going to push hard and attempt to outwork everyone . I feel like I'ma always wind up on the top. I make quality music that people can feel, that been through anything. With that being said, everybody been through something or know somebody that been through something.

Describe the moment you realized you had a talent?

I was actually in the penitentiary when a friend of mine, 100 Grand... we was just sitting on the steps listening to some beats and we was just freestyling, playing around. And then we started doing it a couple days and it became like a hobby. Then when I came home, I threw something on a CD and put it out there and everybody liked it. So I decided to play around with it every now and then. When that happened that was like 2004, 2005, around the time I started rapping.

Watch 'The Conscious Rap and Hip Hop'