Austin, TX - 

SXSW, the annual week-long music and film festival in Austin, Texas, was the place to be this year, as it is every year. Coming out of Chicago, a city home to some of the greats such as Kanye West and Common, a young 21-year-old named G Herbo rises. Not only has he made a name for himself in the realm of Hip Hop, but also in the community.

Thanks for rocking with us #GHerbo ✊? Exclusive interview coming soon. #SXSW

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HipHopDX had the pleasure of catching up with Herb at his hotel room, after a crazy night at the Mass Appeal stage. This #LiveAtTheBBQ showcase was the place to be, featuring headliner Lil Wayne, A Boogie wit da Hoodie, and Dave East, among others.

On this very day (March 16), G Herbo released a commemorative merchandise capsule in conjunction with the release of his Welcome To Fazoland 1.5 EP, which he describes as a “mixtape deluxe.” This celebrates the three-year anniversary of Welcome To Fazoland.

“I just wanted to put out a body of work that my fans are true to and familiar with,” he shared. “But it’s still bonuses on there. So it’s like a new project. A lot of new music I’ve been working on and just been having sitting. Songs been leaked and put all over the place. Really, I just wanted to gather all my music in one place, and I’ma keep on doing it.”

When asked about the Nicki Minaj/Remy Ma beef, G Herbo had nothing but positive things to say about both despite having a monster guest appearance on the Young Money rapper’s “Chiraq.” In a recent interview with The Breakfast Club, he revealed he almost missing the collab with Nicki because he almost hung up on her. Now, he expresses appreciation for how the Black Barbie gave him a co-sign.

“I’m so humble and down-to-earth. I look up to Nicki Minaj, of course, she helped jumpstart my career,” he said. “Of course, I love Nicki forever. But I thought I just seen Remy Ma in Miami. I was going to walk up to her and get a picture. It’s Remy Ma. She one of the coldest Hip Hop females ever, along with Nicki.”

Unfortunately, putting a picture up on the internet would have caused unnecessary problems.

But social media can be used for positive ways too, such as Chance The Rapper’s support of the city. As someone also with a huge following, Herbo gives praise to his fellow Chicagoan, whose efforts do not go unnoticed.

“Shout out to Chance for winning his Grammy,” he said. “Then he just donated a million dollars to CPS. So that’s insane. Nobody’s doing that. Especially under 25, from the city that we come from, with so much poverty and violence. For him to really think to do that. . . Chance been giving back to the city in a crazy way.”

Back in February, Chance The Rapper bought all the tickets to Get Out at Chatham Theatre on 87th. Herb speaks on the significance of the theater.

“If you from Chicago, you know 87th is a legendary theater,” he explained. “When you were growing up, all the kids from Chicago would just go out to 87th theater to have fun. Nobody does that anymore. Nobody goes to 87th theater because there’s so much violence, things that have been going on since we were kids. I can guarantee you, 80% of Chicago kids in my age group or my generation, has experienced an 87th show. That kind of made me feel a certain way, that he chose that show in particular, instead of a show downtown, or a show in a good neighborhood.”

This lead to even more praise for the Coloring Book rapper.

“All it is really just staying true to yourself,” he added. “And that’s exactly what Chance is doing, and he has been doing from the dawn of time. He hasn’t changed a bit. Even before he was getting all this attention, he always remained himself. So that’s why I fuck with him super heavy.”

G Herbo is trying to make his own impact on the city. There’s nothing like performing in your hometown, as evidenced by G Herbo’s sold out show, which turned out to be one for the books.

“It was really just me reflecting on my first show I did in Chicago to now,” he said. “It was crazy. I look forward to doing it again. It was super, super, super insane. I didn’t think I could get that much love in my city honestly.”

Herbert was recently named honorary principal for a day at a Chicago high school. This lead to a conversation on how G plans on being a good role model.

“I try to tell the kids as much as possible, stay focused on whatever you want to do in life (to excel),” he said. “Not what makes you happy for the moment, that your peers or your friends may be doing. But what you genuinely want to do that makes you happy. I feel like that’s what I need to do to be a good role model. And give back, hands on. Give opportunities, activities, summer jobs, AAU programs, youth centers, things like that, in my community and my city. And all over the world. For poverty-stricken neighborhoods and things like that, that the youth don’t have.”

Fans wait patiently as Herbo prepares his forthcoming debut project, Humble Beast. It turns out the title comes from one of his homies he played basketball with and inspired him to go hard after his dreams.

“It kind of struck me,” he shared. “He called himself a humble beast because he’s humble, but you could still have an inner animal inside you. To actually let it out and be able to maneuver and get through obstacles in life. And you don’t have to let anyone know, ‘I’m about to knock this building down, or knock this wall down.’ You actually do it and they see the inner beast or inner animal that you have inside you. And they know you humble, because they didn’t see it coming.”