As their slogan indicates, Detroit-based nonprofit, Cool Smart puts the fun in fundraising. This year’s Tux and Chucks charity gala was no different. The 5th annual festivities featured plenty of tuxes, Chucks, food, and fun. The DJs kept the crowd moving but, special guest, Slim from 112, turned the party out with a hyped performance of hits like “Dance With Me” and “Peaches and Cream.” Reviving that ’90’s vibe, Slim took the audience to a time when R&B was about real lyrics and unique creativity.
Like many artists, Slim has mad love for The D. After his live performance, he took some time to chat exclusively with rolling out; he was joined by his artist Deezo and DJ Lucky Calhoun. Slim reflected on his time in the music business, attributing much of 112’s style to the influence of super groups New Edition and Boyz II Men. He knew he was in the right place when industry icon, Diane Warren told him that he reminded her of DeBarge. As he confidently spoke about his plans to reclaim his spot in the R&B game, Slim revealed glimpses of the man within the artist.
Slim was careful not to reveal the exact date of when the upcoming Bad Boy tour is kicking off, however he assured us that Detroit will be on the itinerary. Check out some moments from Slim’s performance at Tux and Chucks and our exclusive interview with him below.
Tell us about how you came to get involved with Tux & Chucks.
I just got a phone call, really. Once we saw it was a charity situation, you know, anything positive ’cause M3 ourselves, we do stuff in Atlanta GA. We have Welcome All Park; Welcome All Park is community, where basically we get with young men who are raised in single parent homes; they need role models. What better way to touch young men than with sports? On the field we make them strive to be the best and then of course we kinda get into academics and stuff like that. Earlier this year, we had some cats get scholarships and they were on ESPN. Troubled kids who are turning their lives around and being able to change the lives of their families.
What’s the name of your organization?
It’s called the Welcome All Panthers.
So, your company M3, started here. How long ago was this?
2008; when y’all heard “So Fly,” that’s when my label had started. So actually, you’re sitting right next to my artist, Deezo. You see his chain right there, it says, “M3.” We came up here and did Coats for Kids and it started from there. I named it after my sons.
Tell us more about M3, any projects coming out?
Oh yes, first off I’m proud of the first movement with everybody, big shout-outs to Block Boyz. We dropped an album, Love’s Crazy, it sold 6 figures and “So Fly” went gold; it was crazy and that was like, independent. So from there, I guess, you know, I pretty much slowed down a little bit, music stuff started changing, a lot of things happened. I just think that it’s the perfect time now to come out with an album now titled, Refuel.
The R&B game needs to be refueled. Is that what you’re saying?
There you go, there you go; we just need to get it right back. At the time when I left it, I was the No. 1 R&B artist. So, now sitting and listening to what’s going on now, you know, no shade at anybody ’cause they’re very talented cats. But, I’m from the 90s, so when you listen to the words, I’m just used to when men were men and women were the queens. You know, when you build an empire. I mean, I want to have a daughter and I want to make sure that that young lady and all the young ladies out there understand their worth. And know that to be a Queen, the man might run the whole situation but, you’re not going to get things poppin’ unless that woman feels like she’s who she’s supposed to be. It’s just a way of saying everything, and you know in the 90’s everybody was real strict about how we presented things, if you say it you have to be very creative about how things come out. And you know it leaves a lot more room to creativity. That’s what I think, needs to be brought back too. Being a part of 112, selling over 20 something million records, and understanding the mainstream situation now it’s about being consistent and just solidifying your legacy. 50 years from now, when people say, “What did Slim stand for?” You’ll know exactly what it is.
When is Refuel coming out?
Refuel, the album, is coming out sometime the first part of next year. But, I have a record called, “Never Gon’ Break Up,” and right now, Rich Homie’s in the studio now. The record’s crazy, I’mma tell you right now. Of course everybody knows we all from the ATL, so you know, great ties there, you know when I mean? Got with the same guys that did “So Fly”, Oddz N Endz, went down to Orlando, got that poppin’. When I heard the beat, I was like, oh here we go, I thought I was jocking my own song but, then once we got it over to Rich Homie, Rich Homie was like “Yo that’s crazy.”
Are there any plans for 112 to reunite for a reunion album?
Well, 112, we’ve been doing shows for the last past three and half years. We’ve been traveling around the world, ya’ll will definitely be hearing something. There’s going to be a press conference with Bad Boy, Puff Daddy and the Family, the tour’s about to pop. That’s why we call ourselves a family; we always see each other.
Who’s going to be on that tour?
Oh yea, y’all saw the BET Awards, right? It’s going to be like that; it’s going to be a mixture of old and new.
Photos: Porsha Mitchell for Steed Media Service