Twenty-year-old hip-hop artist MoBo The Great has had the pleasure of rhyming with Jay Z not once, but twice.
The Kankakee, Illinois, native first made a name for herself by joining Hov onstage at the age of 16 during his Blueprint 3 tour. She then one-upped herself by joining him onstage again during the Magna Carta Holy Grail tour last year, spitting live verses on both occasions that warranted the superstar emcee getting her contact information to keep tabs on her progress. Since then, she has dropped her debut single, “Get The Money,” which has been featured on local radio station Power92, and has done shows with Sasha Go Hard, Caleb James, and Alex Wiley among others.
She recently dropped a visual for the song “The Law (Of Attraction),” now Mo is preparing a project titled FTP, to be released at the end of August. She took time to check in with the rolling out 10 to talk about her new project, her dream group, and what Drake said about her.
Who was your musical idol and why?
Kanye is not only my musical idol but my life idol as well because he’s not afraid to take risks. He’s a consistent innovator who never fails to break down the walls and create the unheard. He’s always fighting to better the culture and create an even ground, even if he has to sacrifice his “celebrity.” He’s definitely a big reason why I believe and I’m able to be so confident in myself while being able to maintain who I am as a person and not jeopardizing or compromising who I am in the process.
You’re in your dream group with four other artists of any genre … who are your group members?
I’d choose Peter Cottontale on the piano, Just Blaze on the drums, Marsha Ambrosius on the vocals and Solange as the DJ. I have to be the only lead, you know how those stories go [laughs].
If you had to a concept album with one producer, who would it be and why?
A concept album with one producer? Hmmm … I have no idea. I would pick ‘Ye but we can do a rap album together. It’s between Pharrell and Timbaland. Maybe Justice League too, though, they created classics for Rozay.
What’s the best thing about being an artist?
The best thing about being a performing artist is being able to see the expressions and feel the impact you leave on people and knowing that something I hold so close to me, can be treasured so sacredly and genuinely by a majority of people who unfortunately, probably would never get the chance to know me personally.
What’s the worst thing about being an artist?
The worse thing about being a performing artist is dealing with the behind-the-scenes bull—-. Worrying about your image, dealing with egos, making sure everything is run properly. It’s a business and although I’m an artist in this business, I wish sometimes I could just create without having to worry about whether or not it’s marketable or how it’s perceived..
Name one song that you wish you’d written.
Right now, I wish I [had written] the whole Reasonable Doubt album.
Talk about your new project.
My project, FTP, due for release late this fall, is something very sacred to me because I fought so hard not to change and conform to the original name, “F— The Public.” I’ve been working on this project for two years and I definitely think it’s something that needs to be heard. It tells a different side of “fame.” A lot of kids grow up wanting to be rappers because they see the bad b—-es, fast cars and Mollys as the turn up life and while that is pleasing, they don’t tell you to get there you had to lose friends, you had to deal with jealous family members, how you had to give up time spent with those who mean the most because you’re living life on a schedule. They don’t tell how the clothes are free and the cars are rented. So this project to me is more so saying, “OK, you want the bad b—-es? Cool. You want the fast cars? Cool. So do I, but this is what you have to go through to get there, and it’s up to you to decide whether or not it’s worth it because not everybody can handle it.”
How do you use social media to your advantage?
Social media is pretty cool. It definitely comes in handy when promoting. I do try to monitor my use, though, because I’m working and you never know who’s watching. I like Instagram, though. Pictures say what words can’t. And I low-key feel like Beyoncé when I upload pictures with no words [laughs].
What is your creative process like?
When I get a song, I usually start the cadence right then and there by mumbling just to develop the flow. I’ll write the chorus first because it’s the easiest. Maybe smoke a bit, write the verses and rap it to friends until it’s recorded. Then I play it consistently until it’s released.
Name one thing fans would be surprised to know about you?
Fans would be surprised to know that I’m the “light skinned chick, first flight from Poland” that Drake was talking about. Ha!