RocHarder Magazine: Yung Ralph: Power Moving the Right Way by Lola Sims

There’s nothing young about Yung Ralph but his name. As an artist who has already had 5 successful singles (Look Like Money, I Work Hard, About a Chick, Like This, and I Bought Dat) without a video in regular rotation, he’s grinding harder than a lot of other artists. Now, in an Atlanta-midtown based office, complete with a full production studio and a spacious headquarters for staff and interns, Yung Ralph seems relaxed but anxious in a baby blue and white Adidas track suit. With his newest single “I Bout Dat” featuring Nicki Minaj hitting the airwaves, pretty soon he won’t have time for rest. But, that’s a good thing for the Atlanta native and exactly what he’s planning for. Rewind three years and Yung Ralph was just hitting the national scene in music with his then hot single, “Look Like Money.” Already well known in Atlanta and even more so on Cleveland Avenue, he was moving a thousand miles per minute without the right team behind him. All the hard work did pay off for Yung Ralph who had a hand in turning his 1st single into a street anthem but things didn’t add up. Fast forward back to today and Yung Ralph is the Captain of his own ship. With plans that include: starting his own label and turning this summer into that of Yung Ralph dominance, he’s moving in the right direction. What are you working on right now? Right now I’m working on new music with new producers and trying to finish up this mixtape I have coming out with Greg Street soon. I got Marvelous J, Show Stoppa, Mike Will, and lot more on there. How are you making yours stand out? Were probably going to end up printing between 50k-60k. I’m hitting the road with them so everywhere I go I can bring them to the people in those cities that want Yung Ralph. You have to give folks music that they’ll buy You’re clearly working hard right now. What’s a normal day like for you? I’m still reachable to everybody. I still stay in the hood. I can still come through and people will say ‘damn is that Ralph?’ I still kick it. My career and biz are changing me and taking up some of my time but I’m never going to not be around the people I know. Sometimes people call me for features. I’m still taking meetings everyday, doing interviews, and of course making my music. Are you thinking at all about starting a label? I have people that come up to me all the time and say I rap and I sing. I know a lot of them can but I know right now I can’t offer them what they want. I don’t want to have artists signed to me just to have them. I want people to be able to make money and not just sit back and wait for me to be done. I also want to push myself a little farther in my career. I do have a couple artists I am looking at though for Juug Man Ent. Once I get that rolling and fully focus on it I know I’ll be able to put them in better positions. You got to have self-success before you can help someone else get it.
What part of Atlanta are you from. We hear you mention Cleveland Ave. but what exactly is Cleveland Ave. and how has it effected who you are as an artist?
Cleveland Ave. is Cleveland Ave. I go from Walt Dr. to Oak Dr. That whole area has influenced me.
I’ve seen a lot. I’ve seen people be in your face one day and dead the next. I’ve seen big money made. I’ve seen money lost. I’ve tried to be apart of this been apart of that. I ultimately did what I had to do. You have to understand I’ve been independent. I moved out of my mom’s house right after graduation. June 2. , I still remember the date and won’t forget it. Its not like she put me out or I got kicked out, I left because I had to get it, had to make it on my own. Now I still have and always will have a room at her house because I’m her son and she loves me. You’ve been an artist for a while, but what did it take for you to get “Look Like Money” really going?
We went to every club, every night, and talked to everybody. It was a hard grind, but look what came from it. A lot of people say things like you should be farther than you are. I could be but I feel like I’m where I need to be. I caught my business in time, before it went to far ahead that I couldn’t get it back. I have issues that are still being handled legally to take back what’s rightfully mine. How is your grind different this time around? This time around I got to work harder. I know what it takes now. I made a lot of mistakes when. I first came out because I had the wrong people handling my business. Stuff that I wasn’t there for in the past I’m there for now. I’m in all the meetings. I want to know everything. Things are different now. I’m known and I have people who haven’t seen me in a few. When people don’t see your face you have to work harder. I feel like I work harder now than ever before. I made some stupid mistakes in the beginning but I now understand you have to put everything into yourself to get everything back. This time around I’m not making the same mistake again. I have the right people in line now for a reason.
As a person who use too worry about what others thought, Yung Ralph could care less now because he only has himself and his real fans to please. With his DJ Scream hosted mixtape, The Juug Man (the sequel) already making its rounds in the streets and on the Internet he’s off to a head start on the competition. Planning to press up at least 50-60k of his upcoming Greg Street hosted mixtape, which features Project Pat, Nicki Minaj, Mr. Mac, Dondrea and a number of others, there wont be a city in the South that won’t be hearing from Yung Ralph.

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