seven minutes at sxsw with migos
We catch up with the Versace trio at SXSW as they prepare to release their debut album.
Versace! Versace! Versace! In 2014, Atlanta trio Migos made one of rap's most enduring anthems, Far from being one-hit wonders, the threesome, who have worked with Bieber, Drake, R. Kelly and Young Thug, have plenty more bangers lined up when their new album, Y.R.N, which drops in June. Offset, Takeoff and Quavo tell us why they love the house of Donatella so much and why they're the new Beatles…
How's life in the land of Migos?
Offset: It's a blessing cos we in it to win. We got an album coming out June 16, and a clothing line. It's a great opportunity man.
Takeoff: Yeah it's a blessing cos of where we came from. God blessed us to do what we want to do and to be where we're at cos, you know, some people, they ain't right.
Quavo: From The A to the UK, that's how I feel. I feel like we made it and we're here to impact around the world and not just America.
Do you get annoyed with being associated with just one song?
Quavo: Nah, you don't get pissed off cos that's how you came in the game. That shouldn't make you mad. If it was your downfall, that might make you mad. If it didn't blow it would make me mad.
Takeoff: This is what got us here right now. That's what got us sat here right now. That's history.
Quavo: That's history but we got more in store. You gotta know Fight Night.
Takeoff: You got to know Handsome and Wealthy.
Offset: We're about to drop our new single, One Time, produced by Deeko.
Can you define what made Versace such a massive banger?
Quavo: Well, Versace is just classic itself. You know Biggie and Tupac they used to be draped up in it.
Takeoff: When you think of Versace, you think classic.
Offset: The name, the look, the feel, everything about it is timeless.
Quavo: Every boss and every rich person has worn it over the years. So for us, as young bosses, coming out, and affording it is incredible. Considering where we came from. This is our own Versace, these are my Versace glasses. The Versace we're wearing in the video, isn't rented, we own it, it's in our closets to this day.
Why do you make music?
Takeoff: If you're mad, you go in there and spit. You can take your anger to it. You can express how you feel. If you're feeling sad, go in there and spit.
Quavo: When I was younger, I had a family, you know, I had to pay the bills and it was getting tough. We had no money but we had to change lanes. We had to stop doing the hot shit that would get us in trouble. So that's why I did music. And I had to get my brother - Offset - out of jail.
Atlanta is on fire again right now…
Takeoff: It's like Vegas. It's a lot of rappers, a lot of entertainers.
Offset: Atlanta popping right now. Everybody want it.
What makes you angry?
Takeoff: A person who doesn't respect. If you give respect, you get respect. A lot of people try and put us in a certain category, but you got to give respect. If something has occurred, it's because of a disrespect. You respect me, I respect you. I like people that's real; keep it one hundred. Keep it one thousand. If you don't like me, pull me to the side and tell me why. Don't go on the internet otherwise it's going to cause a feud, and we have to handle things. And how we handle things is different, you know. But we try not to do that, cos what's the point?
Offset: What makes me angry? Somebody play with my money. Playing with my family, playing period. I don't like playing around. I'm serious.
Quavo: What makes me angry, you try our music. Don't ever try our music. Don't nobody ever try us on the mic. Don't you tell us how long we can get on this stage and do songs.
How do you think MIgos has altered the hip hop narrative?
Quavo: Migos is the best group in the world
Offset: We're the best group of all time
Quavo: We've been compared to the Beatles.
Offset: They said Migos is going to be as big as the Beatles - Paul McCartney I would like to meet you.
Quavo: I think we get that comparison cos we're legends. To be a legend you got to change the game and we changed the game. When the Beatles came out, how many groups came out after them? Too many! So when we came out with Versace and that whole flow and sound, how many more people came out wid' it? It's very flattering and it makes us go down in history.
What were you like as kids?
Takeoff: I grew up in The A [Atlanta]. I knew everybody everywhere in the city. Everywhere I go, whatever part of Altlanta, I know someone.
Quavo: We ran into each other in middle school when we moved from Athens, Georgia, and Takeoff had moved too. We just got together since then. Hanging out together, making music.
Takeoff: We're very tight; it' s always us three. We partners in everything and our parents and friends know that we're the three honchos. We the head honchos of the northside. You got to go through us.
Quavo: We've been leaders since we were kids. I was a quarter-back in high school so I was a leader.
Takeoff: I did my thing, I was that n***a in school.
Offset: We got it.
Quavo: Offset won Best Dressed. He had all the swag. I was a quarterback so I had all the chicks. Takeoff was just the wild one. He was younger than us so he sees his older brothers like, I've got all the girls, Offset has all the swag. He got a lot of women.
What do you think of the Kendrick album?
Quavo: We ain't listened to it at all, but we fuck with Kendrick. But we have an album out June 16. We focused on us right now.
Who you working with on your new album?
Takeoff: Lil Wayne and Meek Mill. We got one more heavyweight name but we can't tell you who that is. I just ran into Steve Aoki in the airport and he want to work with us
Are you ambitious?
Takeoff: Yeah! We want to be great.
Quavo: We want to be the greatest group of all time and the realest n***gs that ever did it.
Offset: And we want to stay relevant.
Quavo: I want everyone that meets us to say that we're good dudes and they respect us. We want to go down as greats.
Takeoff: Hall of Fame. The best. For people to say 'There will never be a group like Mogis'. Who we are is in our persona, the way we carry ourselves, the way we walk the way we talk. It's just in us.
Approximately, how much $$$ of jewelery are you wearing.
Quavo: You got to weight it up. You got to take all the diamonds out and weigh them. Then you got to weigh the gold. Most rappers don't know their diamonds, but we do.
So a lot?
Quavo: Yeah, basically.
If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?
Quavo: I would change all of the radio stations so they're all tuned into Migos.
Takeoff: I'd make everyone rich. If everybody rich, a lot of the problems we have in the hood wouldn't be occurring. The kids not having education and so on. Everyone should have the same advantage and opportunity and be able to see that you can do something different than poverty. I want to bring all my folks out the struggle.
Offset: I'd take out all the evil. Some people is born evil and some people is born great.
Quavo: We were born blessed! We've been through a lot of trouble and fights and gangsta shit, but we give thanks!
Text Hattie Collins
Photography Diwang Valdez