Rick Ross now ranks among the top-tier artists in hip-hop coming from the South. While Ross’ name has been synonymous with Miami since he came on the scene five years ago, in the June/July issue of The Source,the MC talks about his roots in other cities down bottom. Ross, who blesses the magazine’s cover, reveals that his mother is from Clarksdale, Mississippi, and that he was born in the region’s Coahoma County.
“I always felt in touch with my black side riding by cotton fields at 5, 6 years old, seeing big mills of cotton balls,” Ross revealed.
“I was always in touch with slavery, when I could recognize a palm tree at the same age,” added the rapper, who was raised in Florida. “I always respected my culture, my people. Growing up in the streets of Miami, I saw different ways to escape a lot of conditions that I knew was around the corner in Mississippi. It always made me see the world from so many different aspects. I saw the fast life of Miami, but I also saw the slow countryside of a small, country town with a small population. I heard the struggles.”
When he’s not on the road promoting the Albert Anastasia mixtape or his upcoming album, Teflon Don, Ross is often in Atlanta. He opened up about why he spends so much time these days at his house in Georgia.
“Atlanta is a great place to resonate and meet a lot of producers,” he said. “It’s a great wealth of producers here, I believe more than any major city in the South. To really stay on top of your beats as an artist or make big moves — you should have a presence in Atlanta.” But Ross was quick to point out he hadn’t made a permanent relocation, telling the magazine, “I don’t live here. Miami is my primary spot. I own three studios and this is one of them.”
The new issue of The Source is a split cover; Ludacris has the other. Ross’ album is due in July, and his aforementioned mixtape was released Thursday. He told Mixtape Daily this week that Albert Anastasia was about always staying current.
“This new mixtape we’re releasing right before Memorial weekend, it’s gonna be completely new music, new beats. Dope street ideas. It’s strictly for the Teflon Don lovers. It’s strictly for everyone that’s excited for July 6.”