LU: Talk about some of the specific tracks…
RF: I’m normally more passionate about my reality/cultural music. Out of all the music I do, I feel like that’s what I’m about. If I’m supposed to sit and talk with someone, the conversation that I would have is about life. I have this song called “Truths and Rights” where I’m giving a youngster a guideline as far as what you need to be doing to achieve. There’s a segment on the mixtape that is addressing life in general, songs like “My Worth” with Gramps Morgan, songs that just uplift the people spirit, so that’s the part I probably tell people to pay attention to. I went to the studio and recorded nine songs in one night just for this mixtape. Just flowing over popular beats that’s already out there. [For] the bonus track, me and Screechy did something on Method Man’s [“Bring the Pain”]. A real sick flow.
LU: The Ruff Entry Crew, with you, Screechy Dan, Mr. Easy, Shaggy, Rayvon, Baja Jedd, were kind of the dancehall Wu-Tang Clan. All these solo artists who came together. As far as the evidence of the group for people who weren’t in Brooklyn in 1992, there’s only your song “Dancehall Scenario” from your first album. Is that the only song you all did together like that?
RF: Since I came into this game, I always try to bring somebody with me. If I’m doing a show, I gotta bring somebody. I always have a passion to break other artists. I love to see a discovered new talent and watch them grow and become big. I get such joy out of seeing it. So doing “Dancehall Scenario” and getting everybody on the track was just a joy to do.
LU: Was that inspired by Scenario from A Tribe Called Quest?
RF: It could be. We were influenced by hip-hop in some form because Screechy Dan had been here for a very long time, I’ve been here for a long time, Shaggy—all of us. We grew up part time in Jamaica, part time in Brooklyn. We might go in the studio and do something influenced by both music, but do it without even thinking.
LU: Would you ever do a Ruff Entry Crew album?
RF: Shaggy, Screechy and I have attempted to, we actually have a couple tracks that we started with already but it never really manifested most of the times. So hopefully one day we’ll probably get it together. I see a lot of groups, like broken up groups try to, but that chemistry, that magic is so..
LU: ..So far gone
RF: Yeah. Its so hard to bring back that vibe, you almost have to evolve to something else. I’m the type of person, I don’t like to go back. Never did, never will. I’m just always moving forward, always trying to evolve, not trying to recreate what once was because we’re all different people now.
LU: What do you do in your spare time?
RF: Cook! I cook everything. I been cooking since I’m 13 years old so it’s my favorite thing to do. And I play FIFA, that football game on the iPad. I play online against people I don’t know. I’ll play for two hours before I go to sleep. All of the countries that I’m playing, I keep them in mind, not just on a football level, but musically, if I’m gonna play Brazil against Portugal, or Italy against France, I keep these countries in my head.
LU: Being on the road have you ever found yourself in some strange part of the world and realizing how far Jamaican music has come that you’re even there?
RF: There’s one thing I’ve learned about Jamaican people: they’re explorers. There’s not one part of the world I’ve been that I haven’t seen a Jamaican. I go to Dubai, and I see a Jamaican guy pop up in the party. If I’m in Australia, in a party chillin’, I see a Jamaican guy seh Yow, wahpm man? And I’m like, what is this dude doing here? Everywhere. Another thing I notice, reggae music is the least-selling music, but the most popular music. It’s embraced by every nation, but, just because we cannot get it together, it cannot get to the point it needs to get. There’s an R&B A&R guy who told a reggae artist, I‘m so happy that you guys can’t get it together because the day you do, we’re all in trouble. The music is so powerful, but because it has no structure, it’s just nothing but hustlers and bloodsuckers, it cannot get to where it needs to go. I don’t know where in the world they don’t listen to it.