Among the artists featured on Rick Ross’ newly-released Mastermind album is Chicago rapper Kanye West who lends his assistance on the Big Sean-assisted “Sanctified.” While discussing the record during his CRWN interview with Elliott Wilson, Ross spoke in detail on his relationship with Kanye.
The Miami emcee says he first met Kanye when the G.O.O.D. Music musician was at the start of his producing career. According to Ross, he was ghostwriting for an artist Kanye was working with during their first encounter together.
Their interaction in the studio together even resulted in what Ross says was his first cypher.
“Me and Kanye met at a very early stage of him producing. I was just writing for different artists,” he said. “And I actually was ghostwriting for an artist and he was producing for the artist when we first met. This may have been in ’03. And his beats was probably 2,500 then…The whole time me and Kanye sitting there we don’t really know each other. We don’t really know each other’s backgrounds or no shit like that…We just start talking about different things. And we had our first cypher. And we both traded verses back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. Him just playing beats. And this went on for however long we was working with this particular artist. And it just kinda spilled over.”
Another artist Ross spoke on during his CRWN interview was Maybach Music Group lyricist Meek Mill. Ross recalled being introduced to Meek’s music thanks to Twitter and meeting the rapper while at a radio station in Philadelphia.
“I was just pulling into Philly and I just asked on Twitter who the hot artist in Philly is,” Ross said. “Felt like all 20-fuckin-thousand followers said ‘Meek Mill, Meek Mill.’ So, I said ‘Okay cool.’ I said ‘Y’all tell him I’m headed to the radio station. Come up there and see me.’ You know? So, by the time I got to the radio station…Meek walked through the doors. The homie had those matted up braids at the time. Looked like my dog ain’t have his shit done in five months. But you know I had come to find out he was just released from prison or jail or whatever you have it. He was just released and he just wanted to come up there and just take his shots and ask me about a record.”
In addition to Meek Mill, other artists signed to the Rick Ross-led Maybach Music Group include Stalley, Gunplay, Wale, and Omarion. As the founder of MMG, Ross says the ability to work with a variety of artists was one of the reasons why he started the label.
“I wanted to be in a position where I could be in a room full of artists,” he said. “And just bounce from artist to artist. And we all doing different things. We all making different types of music. I can walk over to Stalley and get a certain vibe or energy. I can go to Meek. I can go to Gunplay. You know what I mean? And that was just the energy that I wanted to create with Double M G…I believe it fall back on having that personal relationship. You know? And I think that’s always gon’ be a pro. When the CEO or who’s running the label or who’s in charge is an artist as well.”
On top of speaking on his relationship with Kanye West and the artists at Maybach Music Group, Ross also spoke on ‘90s Hip Hop, his relationship with Jeezy, and more during his CRWN interview.