Back in January, WSHH presented “The Field” series, tackling gang violence in Chicago. The series continues, this time taking a closer look at Miami.
Just a few months shy of the new year, World Star Hip Hop is back with its second installment of “The Field” series, this time taking the city of Miami under its microscope. WSHH producers as well as director Mandon Lovett all visit the 305 for a look into the city beyond its glamorized night life and beautiful beaches. WSHH uncovers the street and hip-hop scene of Miami from the perspectives of local artists as well as some of the most respected hip-hop artists of today. Artists like Trick Daddy, Uncle Luke and Gunplay, whom we had the exclusive chance to interview, all piece together exactly what Miami is all about through personal anecdotes of their own .Take a look at what the director had to say about creating the film in such a short period of time as well as our interview with MMG’s Gunplay.
Believe it or not, the documentary, just under an hour, was filmed within 7 days. Director, Mandon Lovett discussed the trails and tribulations of having to condense such a big shorty in a short amount of time.
“You can never fully tell the entire story, what me and my team were trying to do was capture that little bit of the realness”, Lovett said admitting that they purposely shied away from the glamour of South Beach.
When asked about the differences between this film and the first one, “The Field: Chicago”, Lovett pointed out that there are different issues in every city and noted that there isn’t as much gang violence in Miami as there is in Chicago. Considering the short period of time the documentary was completed in, Lovett admitted that more time would definitely be taken into consideration for the next series, “we were on a tight schedule,” Lovett said.
Touching on some of the artists featured in the film, we asked Lovett how he went about the selection process. There are certain rappers from Miami like, Rick Ross, Trina, and Flo Rida, that people automatically think of when they hear Miami. Lovett chose Trick Daddy, Gunplay as well as Uncle Luke for the film because,
“there’s a certain buzz that these artist have in Miami.”
As our phone conversation began to wind down we discussed what was to come next and what we should be on the lookout for.
“We’re going to keep the series going. We’re looking to hit the west coast, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Oakland, some more of the east coast as well. With everything going on in America now I definitely believe that this documentary will shed some light on what’s going on in Miami and all over the world.”
I remember watching the film just as Gunplay’s part began and I knew very quickly that I couldn’t pass up the chance to hear his thoughts on the film as well as his insight on how Miami was depicted. Read the interview below as he discusses growing up in Miami, Bobby Shmurda and his debut album, Living Legend.
I spoke with Mandon and he told me that it’s always difficult to fully capture a story with a limited amount of time, in your opinion, do you feel like this documentary fully depicts what Miami is about?
Gunplay: A lot of the OG’s, they locked up or dead. So they captured the “new Miami” pretty good. I can’t hate on it. Shout out to Ice Berg, he let them know about the “old Miami” even though he a young nigga. They captured the most important parts but you know me, I always got a lot to say.
There’s a clip in the documentary where you say at one point you felt hallow until you realized your power, can you speak on that a little bit more?
Gunplay: When Ross just got on with that single “Hustlin,” I didn’t take advantage of that situation back then I was getting my lil’ show money, my lil’ hype man money. I was just spending it all up, should have been investing my money. I was just doing donkey shit. I wasn’t even thinking about the future I was just so happy to get the fuck out the hood, I got caught up a little bit. A couple cases later, couple years later, couple bitches later, couple fake friends later; I kinda realized, damn, I got an opportunity and I’m kinda throwing this shit away. There’s niggas that’ll kill to be in my position right now. Let me make the most of it and buckle down and focus and that’s what I started doing for the last couple years. That last case I had really made me sit back and really take this shit serious.
Tell me about how it was growing up in Miami then and now, has much changed or is it pretty much the same?
It’s still basically the same, but back then you had a lot of OG’s that was running shit. If I had a problem with a nigga from Overtown or a nigga from Opa-locka I could holla at one of the OG’s over there and let them niggas know what was the problem and niggas would get together and make sure everything was squashed. Now it’s no more leaders. Everybody’s they own boss, everybody doing they own thing. They think they run the fucking world. A lot of young niggas killing each other cause it ain’t no structure. Ain’t no structure in Miami. Everybody that did get away from Miami, from artists to dope dealers; they ain’t reach they hand back really and be that boss figure to the young niggas and really get this shit moving.
I been to a lot of cities especially New York. Niggas in New York; if one nigga get on, they all on, they stuck with you. If niggas from Miami get on, they stuck on you. Ain’t no real comradery down here. Niggas just wanna kill each other, niggas wanna get more money than that other nigga or rob that other nigga that’s getting the money. Ain’t no real loyalty in Miami.
God willing I’ll be the first artist ever from Miami that got put on from another artist that was from Miami. There’s never been anybody from the city of Miami that put another nigga from the city of Miami in a real position of power and I had to fight for that. Nigga didn’t just hand it to me on a plate. Gunplay made Gunplay. Back to the question, its very different but still the same shit. Niggas still killing each other. It’s still the same shit. Niggas talk all that loyalty but that don’t really be the case. It just sound good coming out a nigga mouth.
I noticed you jumped on Bobby Shmurda’s “Hot Nigga.” You shouted him out on the track and you’re a pretty honest guy so how do you feel about him and his rise to fame over night?
He’s cool, Lil young nigga tryna make it out here. He seem pretty focused, he got a squad behind him. I like to see anybody that ain’t falling victim to the system, I’m routing for him. I don’t care if they’re weirdos with fucking tie-die shirts and dyed dreads wearing fucking spandex jeans, I don’t care (laughs). As long as you don’t fall victim to the system or be a broke ass nigga…begging for $20. More power to you dawg.
As an artist, who do you listen to?
I’m from the old school, I stick to what I know. I still listen to 2 Pac, I listen to Pimp-C, I listen to the first Nas album, Reasonable Doubt, Jay-Z, Trick Daddy… www.thug.com. I listen to all that type of shit still. I can’t really…you know with the new era…then I look back and think I am goddamn 35-years-old. When I was 25 getting off the street these niggas was just being born and shit. When I got my drivers license, they mamas was still teenagers. It is what it is, I learn to adapt, I adapt real good.
Are their any new artist you listen to?
Yeah, my artist! Peryon J Kee, he from Lousianna, that’s my patna! We just got a video up on MTV called “Coming Down” featuring me. We shot it out there in Houston. He’s a real old school connoisseur himself. That’s my premiere artist on my label BBG (Bilderburg Group). That’s all I listen to forreal, forreal, not just because he’s my artist, that’s my dawg and then that nigga coming with that real shit. When ya’ll finally get a whiff of this nigga go ‘head on and rewind to this day and say ‘Gunplay told us so.’
You did the track “Aiight” with Ross and you just recently released the video for “Crazy” featuring Young Dro. Can you give us a official release date for Living Legend ?
I wish they would give me one, shit (chuckles). I’m just tryna work it til’ we get it. We did have a meeting at Def Jam the other day and they starting to really focus on my project. I think a release date will be announced really soon. It’ll be dropping before Ross new album so we’re gonna cross promote each other and just make it do what it do. I can’t wait, I feel like I’ll be accomplished. Even though I been in the game starting from a hype man in November 05′, then nine years later, ten years later I get to drop an album. It’s gonna mean a lot to me and this title Living Legend, cause’ I been through 100 percent more than what these rap niggas been through, what the average nigga on the street been through and I’m still here. And I think it calls for a celebration and a title like Living Legend will embody that whole situation.
Deniqua really enjoyed interviewing Gunplay and going forward, he is now considered, bae. She’s on Twitter @__hennystraight.