Rob49 has only been making music for two years, and he’s already signed to one of the biggest record labels in the music industry: Geffen. Beyond that, he’s currently on the road on his first tour, opening for Nardo Wick who broke the internet with his smash hit “Who Want Smoke??”
With a distinct, aggressive sound, Rob49 creates music directly inspired by his experiences growing up in the projects of New Orleans, in the 4th and 9th Wards to be exact (also where the 49 derives from in his name). Since his first studio session, the rising star has dedicated his entire life to the music, working on perfecting his craft daily while making a point to take care of his family.
Most recently, Rob49 unveiled his highly-anticipated full-length project titled Welcome To Vulture Island, with standout features from Lil Baby, Icewear Vezzo, Babyface Ray, and even Birdman on the intro. With cosigns from received co-signs from Say Cheese founder Shawn Cotton and Mississippi State basketball star Lamar Peters, Rob49 shows no signs of slowing down, with his eyes set on becoming one of the greats.
AllHipHop: How would you describe your sound?
Rob49: It’s a new sound, just because I ain’t never hear no cadences or nothing like how I’m coming. It’s a rough and more aggressive sound.
AllHipHop: How was it growing up in the 4th and 9th Wards of New Orleans?
Rob49: Growing up there, that’s what we’re used to so it was cool. You see murders everyday. Somebody getting killed back there everyday. But where we’re from, it’s normal so we’re not looking at it like a terrible place to live. It was cool growing up, it wasn’t really too hard. Our rent was $25, so we weren’t struggling too much.
AllHipHop: In just 2 years, you’re already opening for Nardo Wick on tour. Did you think you’d be here?
Rob49: I ain’t lie, I always knew I was going to be one of them. Even growing up, you got that mentality like “I’m a be great.” I can’t even say I didn’t see it, I did see it for myself.
AllHipHop: How was the first time you recorded?
Rob49: My homie was rapping, it was his studio session and we had got some food. I told him his song was trash, he told me to go make one. So when they went to get food, I made a song and that b#### was hard. We kept going from there.
AllHipHop: What artists do you listen to the most?
Rob49: I’m listening to G Herbo around this time, Future, Kir.
AllHipHop: Kir from Philly?
Rob49: Yeah. I was in that type of mindframe on some struggle s###. That’s who I was listening to at the moment. We had made some s### a couple weeks ago.
AllHipHop: Where was that at?
Rob49: In Philly, I told him “man, you’re my favorite rapper at a point. “He’s looking at me like I’m the one, I’m telling him “you the n*gga.” [laughs] We didn’t get a chance to really do nothing, I was only in town for a couple hours. We had one hour in the studio, 45 minutes for real. We just made a song right quick, I told him we gon’ link back up though.
AllHipHop: Were you in Philly on tour?
Rob49: Yeah, the show ended up being canceled though. They had made it 21+, when it was supposed to be all ages.
AllHipHop: Welcome To Vulture Island out now! How are you feeling?
Rob49: I mean, it’s a brick by brick thing. I don’t expect for it to go l crazy overnight, because that’s not what I really want for myself. I want growth, but right now, it’s doing crazy. I was talking to somebody from Connecticut, they said the whole Connecticut talk about me. That s### f##### me up, I aint’ gon cap. That s### felt like slow motion.
AllHipHop: What was that moment that got you your first buzz?
Rob49: I dropped my first video. The day I dropped my first video, everybody was on that s###. It was called “Toxic,” I had 2 weeks and I was lit in the city. It was some s### on the sound like “I’m right back feeling good, I’m right back feeling cool,” and everybody caught it. You remember that Frank? It’s crazy that was 2 weeks.
AllHipHop: Can you describe Vulture Island?
Rob49: Vulture Island is New Orleans. It was Chopper City at once, I’m just going for a whole new name for it. Naming it Vulture Island, like a reincarnated Chopper City. Chopper City ain’t going nowhere but we gave it another name.
AllHipHop: Can you talk about that Birdman intro though?
Rob49: That was f###### crazy. We weren’t even supposed to link up, I just hit him out the blue. I’m in the studio one night, I’m finishing my s###. My s### was done, I’m like “man, let me hit Bird and see if he’d get on this intro.” He hit me right back.
AllHipHop: On DM?
Rob49: Yeah, on Instagram. He hit me right back and said “pull up right now.” He gave me 30 to 40 minutes of him talking. [laughs] We chopped it up and made it 40 seconds, but I got s### for him for years now. Facts.
AllHipHop: Was he hip to you?
Rob49: Mos def, he tried to sign me. He was one of the first people to try to sign me, really the first person.
AllHipHop: What happened?
Rob49: Nothing, it just didn’t get cleared. You know how it goes.
AllHipHop: How’s your journey been with Interscope?
Rob49: I signed early on. I was only rapping 6 to 7 months before I got signed. Shawn Cotton came to my city and everybody was talking about me because I’m hot in my city. They brought me to him. Getting signed in 7 months, you’re not really in the mindframe of what you’re about to get yourself into. When you get a bag like that, I wasn’t even mature enough for that bag. Growing, I’m just seeing how to move now. I did the right thing at that point because if not, I woulda blew all that s### and been broke.
AllHipHop: How old were you when you signed?
AllHipHop: How you liking the music industry?
Rob49: I try not to even think about it. You know, they got some genuine people. That’s all I be looking at is the genuineness. I don’t really think about nothing else, ungenuine s###.
AllHipHop: How did you link with Lil Baby?
Rob49: I saw him on Instagram freestyling to my s###, he was freestyling to the instrumental. I told P “make that happen,” and he sent that s### two weeks later.
AllHipHop: What was your reaction when you heard it back?
Rob49: That s###’s hard as f###, he did his s### on i. You hear him saying “yeet yeet,” I can really tell he really liked the song.
AllHipHop: Have you ever fanned out over a celebrity?
Rob49: F### no. I might have one fan moment in my life though, probably 2. It’s going to be The Weeknd or Frank Ocean. Hey brother, I’m a just ask for a picture. I want a picture, for sure.
AllHipHop: How does it feel to have people asking you for pictures now?
Rob49: Most def, I be happy. N*gga asked me “do I be faking a smile?” F### no, I be really happy. Why would I be faking a picture? Imagine someone asking you for a picture. For real, me? That’s really how it be, still.
AllHipHop: Best encounter you had with a fan?
Rob49: A fan was riding by like “Rob49!” It was in New Orleans, in a park or something. I was sitting eating crawfish, ducked off with my family. I turned around and said “y’all want to come eat some crawfish?” They really came eat some crawfish and chilled with me. They still be talking about that. I be seeing them tweet, I just act like I don’t see it. [laughs] I be seeing them tweet about it.
AllHipHop: You guys shot a crazy music video, you know it’s not easy to get a big artist to show up to the music video.
Rob49: That f##### me up, ain’t even gon’ cap. Those were my projects. We don’t got no hoods out there, hoods is like housing. Project’s is straight bricks. He pulled up to that b####, him, Kevin Gates and Hotboii.
AllHipHop: How’d Kevin Gates pull up?
Rob49: I don’t even f###### know how Kevin Gates pulled up, he just pulled up. I swear to Jesus, I did not talk to him. As a matter of fact, he asked me “you shooting a video?” I made a post or something a week before, about doing a remix video. He didn’t know Lil Baby was going to be in there.
AllHipHop: You guys definitely gotta get it in for the city!
Rob49: We got some s###. Matter of fact, I think Kevin Gates is from New Orleans.
AllHipHop: What about Hotboii?
Rob49: Me and Hotboii were in the studio a lot together, we were just bumping heads. Me and his best friend Rico are real tight, so that was automatic. We had wound up getting a relationship and s###.
AllHipHop: Best memory from the shoot?
Rob49: The whole video shoot, what you talking about? We damn near didn’t need security out there. Lil baby pulled up with no security. Kevin Gates had no security, in my projects. Nothing bad happens. I think I was the only one with security.
AllHipHop: Have you always moved with security?
Rob49: Now I do. You gotta start thinking, I’m not trying to do anything stupid.
AllHipHop: What do you want fans to get from your story?
Rob49: I want to motivate and show them that anybody can do this, because I ain’t never think in a million years I’m going to be rapping. This s### just fell in my lap, what’s for you is for you.
AllHipHop: What were you doing before the rap? Were you working?
Rob49: I had one job, I worked at Subway, I worked at Subway for a day. I wind up quitting because I tried to make a sandwich, the manager’s telling me I’m doing it wrong. Them Jamaicans be talking reckless, he was a Jamaican. “Hold on brother, you ain’t talking to me like that.” I quit that day, I never went back. He kept calling me, trying to put me on the schedule. I ain’t coming over there.
AllHipHop: 3 things you need in the studio at all times?
Rob49: Water, Casamigo, and a good engineer. The engineer’s be f###### sad. [laughs]
AllHipHop: How did you end up on the Nardo Wick tour?
Rob49: Yeah, that’s my first tour for sure. I don’t even f###### know. N*ggas called me one day like “you want me to do Nardo’s tour?” I’m like “yeah.”
AllHipHop: Who called you?
Rob49: P from QC.
AllHipHop: Does he manage you?
Rob49: He’s about to start managing me. He asked if I wanted to be on the tour, it was butter from there. Nardo’s a cool n*gga. The show lit, straight up. Every show lit, every show f##### me up. I be looking in the crowd, how m############ know my music be f###### me up.
AllHipHop: Do you get nervous?
Rob49: Yeah most definitely, I’m nervous every night. I don’t have no expectations for no show, that keep with a fresh mind and turn that b#### up.
AllHipHop: What are you most excited next?
Rob49: I’m excited to get off tour, because I’ve been on tour since I dropped. I didn’t have any room to really go get busy. I ain’t been in a studio for real, like a studio I’m comfortable in. That’s really what I’m most excited for, to see what happens when I get off tour.
AllHipHop: Where do you stay at?
Rob49: I stay in Miami. Miami is the truth, that’s where you need to be at. Everybody stays there. For connecting? It’s good.
AllHipHop: Any collabs we can look out for?
Rob49: I got some s### with NoCap, I got some s### with Vory. I got s### with Kevin Gates. Who else I got s### with? Fredo Bang and I got some s###. That s### is damn near automatic. He’s from where i’m from, we’re in the studio everyday together. He listens to my music before I made any of the new s### I got. He said “you f###### hard, you the next one.” When the music really got good good, I knew it was genuine. That’s really one of my real dawgs, fasho. I don’t even look at Fredo like a f###### rapper no more, that’s really my dawg now.
AllHipHop: Is the rapping effortless for you?
Rob49: Most definitely, it’s effortless because I don’t really think too much. I say what I want. I had wrote last night, but before that I wrote like one song.
AllHipHop: How’d it feel writing down your lyrics?
Rob49: That s### felt funny, I ain’t gon’ cap. Because the flow, I didn’t know how to get the flow for real.
AllHipHop: How’s your family liking your music career?
Rob49: My family, all them straight. I’m the only rapper my mama listens to. Everytime I get in the car, I’m tired of hearing myself. I’m the one all of them listen to. My cousins, everybody.
AllHipHop: Any goals for yourself at this point of your career?
Rob49: I don’t really got no goals. I don’t got no expectations or nothing. When you have expectations, you’ll fall into thinking you ain’t doing nothing right or something. I just want some peace, that’s it.