Juicy J: I'm not gonna overdose on any drug

Categories: Interview
Photo by Musashi Ono

Juicy J doesn't want to talk about strippers. He's indignant when reporters bring up his drug use. Though his music suggests otherwise, he insists that he doesn't spend his time tucking $100 bills into G-strings and popping molly. At heart, Juicy J is a businessman who'd rather talk about the value of saving money.

Juicy has been in the rap game since 1991, when he co-founded Southern hip-hop group Three 6 Mafia alongside DJ Paul and Lord Infamous. In 2006, Three 6 won an Academy Award for their song "It's Hard Out Here For a Pimp," featured in Hustle and Flow. But the last two years have arguably been the biggest of Juicy's career. He released his third solo album, Stay Trippy, in August last year, which features the platinum single "Bandz a Make Her Dance," as well as "Show Out," "Bounce It," and "Talkin' Bout." At the 2014 Grammys, Juicy performed "Dark Horse" alongside Katy Perry. He's also featured in "23" with Wiz Khalifa and Miley Cyrus, who, rather unfortunately, decided to try rapping on the track.

Gimme Noise caught up with Juicy J a few days before his show with older brother Project Pat and Travis Scott at the Myth in Maplewood to chat about responsible drug use, investing money, and the dreaded possibility of overdosing on water.

Gimme Noise: Where are you right now?

Juicy J: Nashville, Tennessee.

Can we talk a little bit about your mixtape Blue Dream and Lean? What inspired "Aint Allowed Where I'm From"?

[Just was] in the studio smoking green and we did it. There are so many [songs] on that mixtape that really broke my career, that really helped me out -- got me where I am today.

Did you expect any of that?

I didn't expect any of that. I knew it was great, some of the best stuff I'd ever done, but I didn't know it was gonna be big like that. You never know how this music game goes, because it's so up and down, you know?

Your solo material is definitely a departure from Three 6.

I mean, you know when you doing solo, pretty much it's all me, you know? When you're with a group you kind of compromise. [Now] it's just me being me.

Are you really a strip club regular who's constantly doing drugs?

I do not do drugs constantly and I'm not at the strip club every day, no. I go to the strip club when I get a chance, but a lot of the time I'm in the studio. I smoke weed, you know what I'm saying, but I do things responsibly. I'm not gonna overdose on any drug. I'm not a crazy person like that. I'm responsible for whatever I do. I enjoy living, you know what I'm saying? And you have to be smart about everything you do. You can't be stupid. You drink too much water you could kill yourself. You could OD on water. It's true. You never overdo yourself on anything. You gotta be responsible if you like living on this earth.

Most of the time, I'm at the studio. I'm always working. I run a lot of my own business, I manage my own self. I manage my own taxes, I make sure my mom is straight. I know where all my money is at. I save some money for a rainy day. I don't spend it all on jewelry, cars. You know, I got money to do that, and you know, you can do that, but don't spend all of it. I wouldn't dare spend all my money on jewelry and cars. Get the money invested in some things and let it turn around for the future.

What do you think appeals to fans about your lyrical content and "Stay Trippy" aesthetic?

I mean it is what it is -- it's me. Get turned up to my music. My music is fun. It's inspirational for everybody. It's not all about weed smoking. I've been doing this for over 15 years and I'm still out here grinding. You gotta look at the main parts of my whole career. It's gotta be inspiring for somebody who wants to get into the music business for me to be still doing what I'm doing -- what I love doing -- and to still be doing it better than I did it back in the day. I think being trippy is being uplifted.

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