In House With Ca$h Out: Rapper Talks Kid Rock Influence, His Momager’s Role, Weed Codenames & L.A. Reid
Twenty-one-year-old Ca$h Out is playing catch up. The Atlanta native's Billboard chart-climbing hit "Cashin' Out," a rap ode to lavish spending, is moving like a runaway freight train. As a result, he's working continuously to help fans match the track they favor with the man who created it. Ca$h Out's been on the road since February performing, promoting and branding himself in order to cement his music business longevity. In an industry where one-hit wonders rise and fall just as fast, he's following the tortoise's path: slow and steady.
The Epic Records signee is a rapper at heart but he's not limiting himself to the genre. By his own admission, Ca$h Out has pop and rock songs he's waiting to unveil. Perhaps that's why he finds inspiration in the likes of Bruno Mars and Kid Rock -- two esteemed entertainers he speaks highly of with The BoomBox.
Read on as the rising rhymer, who began rapping just three short years ago, reveals the role his "momager" has in his career, why he chooses to give weed a codename, what guidance L.A. Reid has offered him and the reason a debut album is far from his line of sight.
See Photos of Ca$h Out's In House Visit With The BoomBox
You've been on the road quite a bit performing "Cashin' Out." Is there one city you've visited that's more memorable than others, based on the love you received from fans?
St. Louis and definitely [Atlanta's Hot 107.9] Birthday Bash. St. Louis had like 10,000 people and they were screaming the song and Birthday Bash had 20,000. So that was a great experience with two of my biggest shows. It's been crazy.
How does that make you feel knowing that those 10,000 people know your song?
It's a blessing, you know. The record's been No. 1 four weeks straight on the Urban chart, top five Rhythmic, top 30 in the Hot 100... that's including pop, rock, R&B, whatever. It's been a good journey. I've been grinding. Since the songs No. 1, I'm ready to drop the next single. You can't go past No. 1 so you gotta come with another one.
That was going to be my next question. What's your next single going to be?
It's going to be a great record. It's going to come at the end of this week. Soon definitely. "Cashin' Out" is at its peak. It's time to keep the ball rollin,' keep the mojo goin'.
Who did you work with on that song?
The producer is K.E.
How did you two come together to collaborate?
We been doing work together. We been makin' magic so you gotta get back in with what you know better. It's like with the championship this year, you gon' go with the same formula you went with last year to try to win that championship again. We're trying to follow that formula that we used as far as the mixtapes and the songs that my supporters love. It's about what my people like and what my fanbase and my core. It's about reaching the other core, as far as the song being on the Rhythmic side. I been making all type of records -- pop, rock -- I do it all. Expect the unexpected.
You're a new artist but this song is bigger than you right now. How does it feel to try to catch up to that and still brand yourself as Ca$h Out outside of just this one song?
I think I need to catch up more to the song, as far as introducing myself to the world and branding myself because the song is one of the fastest, growing records. Some labels, people don't expect it to grow that fast and take the normal procedures of time to grow. So it really outgrew me. When we came to Epic [Records], my independent side, Bases Loaded, came with 1,000 spins already... on the Southeast region. We had it going. I don't think there's so independent label in this area that been doing that in a minute since the No Limits and the Cash Money. That's what caught [L.A.] Reid's eye as far as an independent. Like, 'Who's this? No Universal. No Def Jam." He recognized that and he recognized my talent. That's when I got that call.
One of the standout lines of the song is "Smokin' on Keisha." Everyone refers to their weed differently. Why did you choose that?
That's what I refer to my marijuana as [laughs], you know. I'm tryin' to keep it clean, you know, using another name as far as [the song being able to be played] on BET and things like that. I just reversed it to Keisha and it came out great and now it's a Trending Topic [on Twitter] everywhere.
Has there been someone you didn't expect that let you know they were a fan of "Cashin' Out"?
Akon. Rihanna tweeted it. Wiz Khalifa. I was chillin' with Akon after Birthday Bash. We was at the studio. We been kickin' it a lot. We been knowing each other; that's the type of humble artist he is. Even though all the money he got, he still acknowledge talent and great music. He don't just overlook it. He give you your respect. Most artists don't try to do that. I love artists 'cause I do the same thing. If I see somebody hot, I'm gonna congratulate them.
Who are you working with on your debut album?
There's no set date right now. What we was just talking about, as far as branding myself, you know, I'm just trying to keep dropping these singles, you know, and building my brand and introducing myself to the world and overseas so when it's time to drop that album the numbers will be right for the label and for me. You don't want to just throw something out there and don't nobody really know you like that. You might have 100,000 followers on Twitter and you could do 10 percent of that. That's 10,000. Look at Rihanna's Twitter, it's 20 million. So if she drops a single on iTunes or something you can at least expect 10 percent of that to download it. You can still be successful, you feel me. We're just taking time and being patient, taking calculated steps so we're not rushing anything.
Your mom is a big part of your career. Sometimes people don't like to involve business with family. What is her role in your movement and why did you choose to bring her on?
She's my manager. The reason why I chose her is trust. On certain levels of success you might bring somebody along to help the situation or bring their talents or knowledge or relationships in the business to help out what you got going on. But as far as now, we're still building from the ground up where we started from -- the independent side. We're still keeping that same circle around that brought us this success. Probably in the near future, she'll have a team or partner or something. Right now it's momager. She know how to separate the two and handle her business. I'm grown so she ain't gotta be a mom no more. She's being a manager right now.
When did you realize you could rap?
This was two-and-a-half years ago, three years ago. Me just hanging around my friends that did rap and just killin' time and realizin' I could do it and do it good for my first time. I was just rapping about what I don' did or seen and I was rhyming with it and it came out great. I went in.
Is there a song that you heard that inspired you too? Where you aimed to create something similar to that?
I don't think it was no song that inspired me. I went through some situations, you know, as far as getting in trouble and things like that. I just tried to figure out what I was gonna do to go right and not left. I thought about the music, like, "Hey, I'm good at this." So why not try it and go hard with it. And it came out for the best.
Who are you inspired by lyrically outside of the rap world? You mentioned that you've created pop and rock songs.
Bruno [Mars]. I love his sound, you know. I love how he can really sing. As far as rock, I like Kid Rock 'cause he know how to dibble and dabble in both worlds, you know. He's interacting with the hip-hop on his side with the rock. That's a wonderful look how he's versatile with it.
What about rappers?
Tupac. Young Jeezy; that's who I used to listen to before I was rapping. Motivation music to get you through your day. [Lil] Wayne, Drake, The Weeknd. People like that.
Is there someone who you've been looking towards to guide you in your career?
Mr. Reid. He been going hard for me. He called me at midnight when the record went No. 1. He congratulated me and he was like, "I'm running with whatever you and your team running with." He feel like we brought "Cashin' Out" to him. They didn't pick the song. They didn't have to sit in an office and pick the song. We brought a No. 1 record to him. All he had to do was do what he had to do and we was gonna do what we had to do on our end. Those two forces came together and made that record No. 1. The music is there; that's not a problem. That's what he signed me for.
You have a "Death Before Dishonor" tattoo on your chest. Why did you get that?
That's what I stand by. Loyalty brings royalty. That trust in a great team. When the loyalty is there you can't help but win. You don't worry about nobody trading on you or going behind your back or stealing. It's death before dishonor.
Watch Ca$h Out's "Cashin' Out" Video