Kirko Bangz Talks New Album, Lessons From Bun B + More [EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW]
One recent night in Atlanta, the stars -- namely Yo Gotti and YG -- aligned on the video set for Kirko Bangz’s growing hit ‘Hoe.’ As the night progressed, the Houston rapper seemed to liven up with every successful shot. With his model looks and exuberant attitude, the beauties on set worked to match his energy -- a tough feat indeed as the ‘Drank in My Cup’ creator bounced off of the walls in anticipation of his upcoming album, ‘Bigger Than Me,’ and his tour with Houston legend Bun B.
“[Bun’s] gonna see how wild I am, too,” Kirko tells The Boombox with a grin. “And how I’m a turnt up ass n----.”
As different as the young MC may be from his city’s pioneers, he’s managed to forge a relationship with the Trill OG -- even gaining some valuable knowledge from him. “I ask questions, you know,” he starts.
“And I know that Bun B usually has a lot of merchandise, people f--- with him and all that and I just ask like, ‘Man, how you get all that [love]?’ He told me, ‘’Cause I know how to talk to people. You gotta learn how to talk to these folks. You gotta learn how to change it up from being behind the mic to actually talking to and networking with people.’ He’s told me a lot of things but I think that was the best thing he’s ever told me.”
In the three years since his first smash, ‘Drank in My Cup,’ took off on airwaves around the U.S., the 24-year-old says he’s learned some important lessons on how he should be handling business, making those tools and tips the premise of his next LP, ‘Bigger Than Me,’ which he says is about 80 percent done.
“I’m talking about my people, my family and s---,” he shares. “It’s just that I’m learning a lot about the game. I had to learn that working with a label that’s bigger than me. I had to learn that it ain’t always about you, it’s a give and take type of thing.”
The album will feature bars from everyone from the aforementioned YG and Yo Gotti to Nipsey Hussle and up-and-comer Ty Dolla $ign, but Kirko purposely kept the guest list light. “I really look at it as being a ‘show and prove’ moment for me,” he states. “I don’t wanna just go a grab everybody, I wanna do my own thing.”
If you think about it, Kirko Bangz is a trendsetter all on his own. He's talented as a rhymer while gifted in creating infectious hooks. “I came in the game with 'Drank in My Cup' and everybody wanted me for that,” the southern spitter recalls. “But I wanted to rap. It took me a while to understand how to mix it in. How to mix in what the label wants me to do but what I want to do at the same time.”
“If you wanna be successful,” he continues. “You gotta understand that everything ain’t about you. You gotta make those sacrifices to do what you came into the game to do, which is take care of your family. It ain’t just about getting in the studio, it’s about doing interviews and videos... A lot of stuff you may not wanna do but again, you gotta understand, that’s part of the game, knowing how to flip it.”
Kirko is as charming as a buttoned-down R&B singer but as ratchet as your favorite street rapper. When asked the reason behind "dirtying himself up" instead of playing off his looks, the Houston native wrinkles a brow then says, “I don’t dirty myself up -- this is how I am!”
“I’m just an ignorant ass n----, this is just where I come from,” Kirko admits, laughing. “I ain’t no... Like... I may look like one of those pretty ass n----s but I’m a regular n----. I’m just out here trying to get it. I just happen to rap and rap just happens to put you on the big screen and put you in front of folks but when it comes down to it, I’m only being me. I dirty myself up ‘cause I’m from the Dirty South.”
His looks may deceive some, but his rhymes have no filter.