If you were to booty a ankle at the mural of hip-hop in Washington, D.C. aloof a decade ago, you would see that the District’s crop of rap aptitude was beneath than fertile, with around no nationally-known artists and few domiciliary names. However, to booty a glance at the rap arena in D.C. today and you’ll see battle-tested veterans, as able-bodied as a bulk of able upstarts, but one name and face that has become alike with the home of the White House is rapper Fat Trel, who has emerged as one of his city’s best acclaimed and admired artery orators.
Building his fizz aural and alfresco of D.C.’s borders with mixtapes like Nightmare on E Street, SDMG and Gleesh, Fat Trel would t the absorption of Rick Ross, who alive the Slutty Boy to a almanac accord with Maybach Music Group in 2013. Despite his quick ascendance up the rap aliment chain, the 27-year-old rapper would additionally accretion a rep for actuality one of the added assertive adolescent artists in the game, with a beck of altercation surrounding him. Aloof aftermost year, Trel was arrested on accuse alignment from DWI and narcotics distribution, to attempting to barter affected money at a casino, consistent in over a year spent abaft bars, yet accession roadblock in his agitated career.
Last month, the artisan was appear from prison. With a new charter on life, he’s attractive to put the accomplished abaft him and focus on architecture his cast as an artisan with his accessible mixtape, appropriately blue-blooded Finally Free. While there are few capacity on the project, Fat Trel says Finally Chargeless will be allegorical of his advance as a man in accession to acrimonious up area he aftermost larboard off.
“The vibe is aloof accepting aback to aggregate I missed,” Fat Trel tells XXL of Finally Free. “Getting aback to the money, of course. Accepting aback the streets, the adulation from the streets. Accepting aback in the band club, you know, the strippers adulation me, I adulation the strippers. Aloof accepting aback to aggregate and acceptable a new person, too. I wanna allocution about some of the bits I learned, actuality complete and how I aghast a lot bodies and let my admirers down. I’ma blow on all that.”
XXL got Fat Trel on the buzz to altercate activity afterwards prison, his new music, actuality abstaining and his affairs to absolve for his accomplished transgressions.
XXL: Admirers of your music were blessed to acquisition out you were chargeless afterwards announcement a few pics on Instagram announcement your release. Did you column those on the absolute day you were appear and if not, what date did you clearly blow down?
Fat Trel: You talking about those pictures of me in a Benz truck? Nah, those pictures was Saturday [Sept. 23]. I got out on that Fri., Sept. 22.
Are the cases you were bound up for bound and if not, what’s the cachet of those cases?
All of ’em over with.
So you don’t got no acquittal or parole?
Yeah, I’m on parole.
You were bound up for over a year. How did you canyon the time?
Well, you know, I purchased a lot of books, I apprehend a lot of books. We gambled a lot. We gambled on the sports games, basketball and football. We played tonk [card game] for money, spades for money; we played a lot of cards. And of course, we played a lot of basketball and formed out a lot. Formed out and aloof played basketball and aloof gambled, and at night I would apprehend books until I fell asleep. That’s how I anesthetized my time.
What were some of the books that you read?
Some of ’em were John Grisham books. He wrote the books to the movies A Time to Kill, Pelican Brief with Denzel Washington. I apprehend a lot of his books. I apprehend a lot of adventures books—The Adventures Scarface, The Adventures of Mike Tyson, The Adventures of Malcolm X. And of advance burghal books, artery books. A lot of D.C. artists, they got books and, you know, bits like that.
Is autograph books and added actual alfresco of rap article you’d be absorbed in advancing in the future?
Oh, absolutely. I absolutely wanna address a book about my story, my life, my family, my everything. Yeah, I absolutely see myself accomplishing that.
A year is a continued time to action things about life. Did you accept any airy awakenings or were you able to abound and apprentice added about yourself during this stint?
Yeah, we absolutely had religious casework there, you know? We had alfresco preachers appear in and speak, so I absolutely got afterpiece with God, but I consistently been a big close accepter in God a huge Christian. So I was consistently account the bible and actuality like that, yeah.
Were there any added means you grew as a actuality alfresco of the religious aspects, as far as maturing?
Yeah, aloof compassionate bodies more. Compassionate the apperception of abyss and bodies that bent bad breaks. I grew as a person, I accomplished a lot. I attending at the animal breed abnormally now, you apperceive what I’m saying?
You were additionally alive as far as autograph raps during your incarceration. Was that a affected accommodation to accumulate your pen sharp, or aloof a artefact of you aggravating to canyon time?
A little bit of both. I didn’t wanna lose my footfall far as my lyricism and the capacity that I blow on in my music, so I wrote a lot to break on point with my lyricism and my pen game. And of course, I wrote a lot to canyon time. You know, a lot of days, we were bound down, a nigga get stabbed up or somebody beating out a C.O. or something. We’d be bound bottomward and I’d address or I ability watch a cine and it affect me to write.
I ability get off the buzz with my babe and it affect me to write. I ability accomplishment talking to my administrator and it affect me to write, get off the buzz with Rozay [Rick Ross] and it affect me to write, you apperceive what I’m saying? Plus that’s my alone job, the alone affair I anytime did my accomplished activity was rap, so it was accustomed for me to write. I brought a lot of books and pens out of commissary.
Were there any artists that accomplished out to you or came to appointment you during your incarceration?
Nah, no artists came to appointment me. No artists came to appointment me, but for real, unless you’re accomplishing three years or bigger I wouldn’t accept capital no artists to appear appointment me, but lot accomplished out. Dave East accomplished out, Troy Ave accomplished out. Rozay, of course, Wale of course. Shy Glizzy accomplished out, aloof to name a few. Raheem DeVaughn accomplished out, a lot of bodies accomplished out.
How has it been adjusting to actuality a affiliate of association again, transitioning aback into your career and day-to-day-grind as an artist?
That’s been easy, man. I wouldn’t say it’s hard, I ain’t absolutely absence a step, you know? The alone affair I had a botheration with was which shoes were new and which shoes were old, added than that, I acclimatized appealing quickly.
Last we heard, you were bottomward with Maybach Music. What’s your accepted accord and bearings with the label?
Absolutely, we’re still bottomward with Maybach Music Group. We’re still bottomward with MMG.
You aloof alone your song “First Day Out (Fuck 12).” What was the afflatus abaft it? Was it accounting in prison?
No, I absolutely did that one [“First Day Out (Fuck 12)”] beginning out. Anon as I got out, we went beeline to the flat and Yung Lan beatific me a accumulation of beats and I played one of the beats and I recorded that song. I didn’t address that one while I was in prison, so that one was aloof fabricated fresh. The acumen why I did that topic, I didn’t do it for no specific reason, the exhausted aloof fabricated me allege about that. You know, I accept to the exhausted and I let the exhausted accord me the lyrics and the topic, so that’s aloof what it gave me and that’s what I recorded.
Your aftermost project, SDMG 2, came out in 2016. Do you accept affairs to absolution accession anatomy of assignment anytime soon?
Yeah, of course. My aing band is gonna be alleged Finally Free, and again I’m absolutely headed bottomward to Atlanta to allocution about the album. The mixtape is Finally Free; that should be advancing in the aing brace of weeks.
Are there any bedfellow appearances on this band that admirers can attending advanced to?
Yeah, but I wanna accumulate that for a abruptness for appropriate now. The streets aloof gonna accept to tune in. Everybody, they gotta tune in, but I got article advancing for y’all.
What can we apprehend from the band as far as production?
Right now, man, me and Yung Lan aloof been recording with anniversary added heavy, man. I like his vibe, he like my vibe, we accomplish abundant music together, so me and Yung Lan. Nard&B ability pop out on there a little bit and a brace hometown producers from D.C. gonna be on there, but for the best part, it’s Yung Lan appropriate now.
When can admirers apprehend a above characterization abandoned anthology from you?
Man, already I accept this affair with Rozay, I can accept added for you on that. Appropriate now we don’t accept a specific date or annihilation like that.
Have you started recording songs for the anthology and if so, how far forth in the action are you?
For the album, yeah, I started a few annal for the album. I’d say I’m about 35 percent into the album, but appropriate now, I’m absorption on this band Finally Free. I aloof wanna get a agglomeration of bits off my afore I move on to the anthology allotment of my life.
In what means would you say the accomplished year motivated you?
It motivated me in a lot of ways, man. You know, it motivated me to go harder, it motivated to ability out and fuck with a lot of altered artists, too, you apperceive what I’m saying? I wasn’t consistently the blazon of guy that was accommodating to cull up on any blazon of artist, you apperceive what I’m saying, that aloof wasn’t my swag. But now I aloof wanna ability out, I aloof wanna accomplish altered blazon of music, I wanna assignment with a lot of altered artists. I aloof wanna drag myself, man, I wanna go to that aing level.
What would you say is the aing akin for you in your career now with all you’ve been through and accomplished this accomplished year now that you’re a chargeless man?
I’ma booty over the charts, man. I wanna booty over the charts. I wanna do those festivals you see A$AP Rocky’s, and the Chance The Rapper’s, and the Machine Gun Kelly’s do. I wanna do those big shows, you apperceive what I’m saying, I aloof wanna be great. I wanna be big, you apperceive what I’m saying?
Is there annihilation abroad that you’d like to say to the admirers or get off your ?
I aloof wanna acquaint the fans, I aloof wanna acquaint the accomplished rap community, man, I’m apologetic for everybody I disappointed, you know? I wanna acquaint my characterization I’m apologetic for black them, too. I’m back, I’m better, I’m sober, I haven’t affected a biologic back I been home. I’m acute and I’m a new person. I’m a new artist, man, but I’m still the articulation of the streets, I’m still the articulation of the nobodies. I’m still the articulation of the hustlers and the biologic dealers and the robbers and the killers, but it’s aloof on a accomplished added altered level. That’s all.
You acknowledgment that you’re sober. Why is it important for you to break abroad from the drugs and booze now?
As far as me actuality sober, I anticipate it’s important aloof because of parole, man. But not alone parole, aloof my decision-making, too, you know? Back you got a bright apperception state, you accomplish bigger decisions I feel, personally. And it ability be altered for added people. Some bodies feel like they almanac bigger music back they smoke. Some bodies feel they almanac bigger music back they’re off a Perc or Xan. It’s altered for everybody.
I feel as admitting it’s important for me because I’m aggravating to break out of trouble, and unfortunately, accomplishing drugs or actuality beneath the access of drugs is advised actuality in agitation in the eyes of the law. So that’s why it’s important for me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not no “against gettin’ high” ass nigga; I adulation bubbler angular and bustling pills and shit. I adulation that, that’s what I do. That’s my blazon of high, you know, against muthafuckin snortin’ coke, and smoker crack, and cutting heroin. Yeah, I would like to alcohol some lean, pop some Percs and chill, you know, smoke a little weed. So that’s why it’s important to me, though, you know, ’cause back a nigga tryna break out of trouble, you feel me?
Why do you anticipate abounding of the artists in the accepted rap mural bless the use of drugs, angular and Xanax, to name a few, added than anytime before?
I anticipate artists allocution about accomplishing all these drugs on their songs because it’s the affairs appropriate now. It’s what’s popular, it’s what activity on in the streets. I consistently acquainted like music reflects absolute life, whatever’s activity on in the streets. So they allocution about angular and drugs because that’s what everybody’s accomplishing now. Smoker edger is hella casual. Smoker edger is like smoker a cigarette now.
If you absolutely wanna get aerial you pop some confined or some Percs, and you alcohol some lean. That’s what’s popular, that’s what everybody’s doing. Those are the drugs that everybody’s chasin’. So I feel like that’s why everybody rapping about it appropriate now added than anytime before.
Now that you’re free, what are the activity acquaint you abstruse or took abroad from your arrests?
The activity acquaint that I abstruse and took abroad from both my arrests is to booty it slow, man. Accomplish bigger decisions, you apperceive what I’m sayin’? I feel like you gotta assure yourself no amount what, though, and you’d be crazy not to wanna assure yourself out in these streets, man. But you know, you aloof gotta accomplish bigger decisions. I was amiss for what I did.
I should accept had my accoutrements registered. It wasn’t no alibi why I couldn’t accept had them registered, so I was amiss for that. But everything’s a acquirements lesson, I aloof abstruse to move smarter. I’m [gonna] accept to cycle with aerial aegis now who [are] accountant to backpack weapons, instead of accustomed it on myself. So it is what it is, man.
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