It’s not hard to see that Glasses Malone is ready to make his comeback this year. The Los Angeles spitter has already released two singles with two major artists and is releasing his upcoming album this summer. Malone, whose real name is Charles Phillip Ivory Penniman, linked up with his close friend Kendrick Lamar for his new single “Thuggin,” which was produced by his in-house team Sega and Tommy Gunz.
“It started off as a basic idea,” Malone told WatchLOUD. “By the time I started putting all the words together, I started coming in and changing certain parts of the music and making it come to life. It was really important to me to make ‘Thuggin’’ come to life.”
Malone also dropped his dedication to his late mother called “My World” featuring R&B veteran Brian McKnight. He released the song just days before Mother’s Day and even designed special Mother’s Day cards for every mom in his life. In his eyes, Malone’s upcoming album will be everyone’s official “soundtrack of the summer.” Recently, we got to speak with Malone about his plans for the album and his history working with Kendrick Lamar and his TDE Clique. He also explained his role at DJ Skee’s Dash Radio and shared his thoughts on the Cash Money Records/Young Money feud.
WatchLOUD: What kind of direction are you planning for your next project?
GM: I’m just having fun. I got a project dropping for the summer. Right now I’m just focused on making sure everyone hears the music but I got tons of music. I feel like it’s the soundtrack of the summer. So I’m trying to get it out there so that everyone’s summer will be hotter. It’s all summer music. I don’t really make club songs. I make party songs. I make music for DJ’s, so wherever the DJ’s at (even in the club), he or she could play it. I think Mustard makes club music. I make party and festive music. If people partying in the club, in the backyard, picnic, or even the local street, car hang out, they can play my music. Not to mention, the different styles that you could drive around with. It’s everything. It’s truly the soundtrack for the summer.
What got you and Kendrick in the studio?
That’s one of a thousand songs. We’ve been in the studio together for a long time together. Since day one. We’ve been making music together for seven years.
When did you guys meet?
It was probably around 07-08. His big cousin, Baby Pat Dog rest in peace, was one of my closest friends. Kendrick was his first cousin. Pat introduced us one day in the studio. Me and the whole TDE family have been doing music for a long time.
“Thuggin'” sounds like something you can bump while riding around in the car. What was the inspiration for the record?
I just wanted to make something that was a throwback to the stuff I grew up to. It’s pretty much what everyone else feels it is. Whatever it makes you think of. But I’m definitely vibin’ to some greatness and different great things of the past. Between the idea of the music itself and the actual social commentary, it’s a throwback to greatness.
Do you plan on releasing more of your material with Kendrick soon?
Sure, we’ve been making music for a long time honestly. I got tons of songs with Kendrick, Ab-Soul, Q and Jay Rock. I got stuff unreleased with all of them. It’s just making sure we make the right songs. That’s the easy part, getting in the studio with him. I know his success is different but that’s the same dude. So yea I’m sure I’m going to release music with Ab-Soul and Jay Rock but it’s just making sure everyone hears it and that it’s on everyone’s radar.
How did you get Brian McKnight on your most recent single “My World”?
Shout out to my boy Six John. He’s the one who really hooked it up. He [McKnight] was my mom’s favorite artist, may she rest in peace. He was just perfect for the song. After a phone call, I’m sure he did his research and saw I was a solid guy, so he just did it. It was a great experience. We did one for mines and one for his record.
My mom was a real special woman. She was really the first baller I ever met. All the new cars, car phones, style, and grace you know what I mean? I looked up to her not just as mom but also for everything. She was a smart woman. She was a street woman. She was my world. She showed me exactly what the world could be. It could be professional, it could be gutter, and it could be harsh.
If you don’t mind me asking, how did you spend Mother’s Day?
Honestly, I made these mother’s day cards. I went around giving mother’s day cards to different mothers. I gave some to the brothers so that they could give it to their moms. I just want to make other people’s Mother’s day better. People appreciated it. I’m trying to make someone’s mom day. Maybe they’re kid isn’t around. Hopefully I touched somebody.
You’ve been doing a lot of work for DJ Skee’s Dash Radio. What got you involved with that?
DJ Skee is the first person outside of Warrior to showcase my songs. When he first got out here to L.A. in like 06-07, we just been friends. He was one of the people who already believed in Glasses Malone. Now that this job has come around, we going to do something special.
It was really about me doing my own work and coming back with the special music. It took me awhile to get into the swing of it but right now that’s what everyone is witnessing, you know? The culmination of my knowledge, like street knowledge and dedication to have a better vision of shit. With Skee, it’s like a no-brainer. Now it’s about making sure that everybody hears everything and that’s the hard part. Everything should be heard.
How would you define your position at Dash?
Shit, I don’t really know. Whatever I want to be (laughs). I don’t really get into the professional side of titles. I like to kind of just go in and help. We got a couple of situations coming together so whatever Skee allows me to do, I’ll be down to help him out.
When you first started out in the game, you were signed to Cash Money Records. How do you feel about the possible implosion of YMCMB?
I don’t think it’s much of a implosion. I think people just grow a part business wise. I wish it wasn’t so public. I mean you got a million people coming in and that’s when all the bullshit starts. It’s just two separate business ideas and they got to figure it out. They’ve been doing this shit together for about 20 years. That’s longer than any other rapper with a rap label of that stature.
How would you define your experience?
Unbelievable. It was an amazing experience. I know I hear a lot of stories about Birdman not paying people but I’ve never had a problem with Birdman not paying me. He was really in my corner and told me a lot of vital things about this business. He showed me stuff and didn’t really keep secrets. No disrespect towards anyone else, but I’ve never had those kinds of experiences. He took me to award shows before I had a hit record. He helped me get my first hit record and tried to get me moving. I just wasn’t really pulling my end with the musical side and not learning music. I was depending on other people instead of not learning myself how to do music with these different producers. He gave me the best platform I could have had at the time and I’m just grateful. I still talk to Stunna to this day and thank him. I’m pretty sure we’ll end up doing business later on. Bird is one of those guys that if you’re family, as long as you don’t do anything to bring shame, you’ll always be family. He’ll do anything for you.
Would you say Birdman helped launch your career?
Birdman actually did launch my career. “Certified” was my first hit record and my introduction to the world of music. He got me my first Top 70 record in the country. That’s a lot for somebody who didn’t know anything about music. Straight from the corner, rapping bars, went to jail, gang-banged and got a Top 70 record. So he did launch my career.