Don Bleek Interviews G-Unit’s 1st Femcee: Precious Paris Talks About How She Linked Up With 50 Cent, Female Rappers, Mixtape & More

50 Cent’s protégé Precious Paris recently released her debut mixtape, entitled From Paris With Love. The 11-track disc has guest appearances from 50 Cent, Kidd Kidd, Twane and Shaun White and boasts production from Havoc, Rahki, T-Minus and more. I caught up with G-Unit’s first femcee at the label’s office in NYC. While there, this Southside Jamaica Queens native and I talked about how she linked up with her boss, mixtape, female rappers & much more.

You rose to fame in 2011, after being featured on 50 Cent’s track “Queens”. In the past, what other projects did you worked on with 50?

We worked on “Kitty Cat” on the T.O.S. album and LL Cool J’s “Feel My Heartbeat” from his Exit 13 album.

In the past, you worked with producers Midi Maffia and Danngerous LLC, Who also happened to give 50 your demo. A week later, 50 called you into his office; do you recall that first meeting and how was it?

I was a nervous racked. I think water was dripping from my palms, I was really stiff and I didn’t move or say a lot. It was my first industry meeting.

How was 50 Cent’s personality?

It was the same as it is today and the same it was back in the days when he was living in Southside.

50 did not initially sign you to G-Unit after the 1st meeting, did that motivated you to work harder?

Yes, of course because I knew deep down inside that he would come back.

So, after the first meeting, how long did it take for 50 to call you back?

It took a couple of years.

How did you feel when 50 finally called you back and told you he wants to sign you?

I played it cool. I said, “Okay, I’ll call you back when I can.” Then I hung up the phone and jumped up and down. “I think my head hit the ceiling.”

Wow, you told 50 Cent that you will call him back?

Yeah and he waited for my call. I was at work.

When did you officially sign to G-unit Records?

September 2011, this was the happiest moment of my life.

Follow me @donbleek88

A few weeks ago, you released your mixtape From Paris With Love; I heard the disc and its super dope.

Awww that made me plush {we’re both smiling and plushing}.

My favorite track on the mixtape is “My Swag” because you’re telling them, yes I’m hood and come from nothing but now I’m on some other shit. What was going through your mind when you wrote that song?

I think what was going through my mind is that I was just reminiscing on how my life used to be and it was more like a “look at me now” type of track. “Like, this is how I play now. I am switching cars in the course of 24 hours, which is how I get down now, keep up now.”

Would you say the mixtape is an introduction of who you are?

I would say it is definitely an introduction of who I am. I think people got a chance to see my variety of flows, topics and hunger. I think I covered all of those areas perfectly. Now, I’m ready to show them what I really have. I was holding back. People who actually know me from the past, say, “P, I love your mixtape, but I know you” and I’m like, “I can’t give them everything at one time.” So I am excited to continue to put out more products.

I heard that around the time 50 Cent was signing you, you already had a mixtape done but never put it out.

Let me tell you the story behind that! The day 50 Cent called me, I happened to had printed up a bunch of CD’s on my own, out of my own pockets, my own check and I took it to get printed up, I had someone do the artwork and he put it on the Internet, then 50 called me in the middle of me doing all of this and getting ready to distribute the tape. He pretty much called me to the office and said he heard the tape, the one tape that I’ve brought to his office and he said, “You can put the rest of those CD’s away. I want you to work with me.” I tried not to surface it, but it got on the web anyway. It came back around but it’s cool because I loved the artwork that was on that CD.

Don’t you still have those tapes in your house?

I have all of them. I have boxes of them. I can’t find it in my heart to throw them away. I paid my hard earned money for those tapes.

You remind me so much of MC Lyte and Lauryn Hill because of your hard lyrics, flow and style. Did they influence you a little?

MC Lyte and Lauryn Hill definitely influenced me. MC Lyte is the reason why I am rapping and Lauryn Hill is the reason why I keep going.

Speaking of Lauryn Hill, I read somewhere that she kind of influenced you to go after your dreams. You attended one of her concerts and she said something to the audience that stood out to you. Do you remember what it was?

When I was a younger child, I went to one of her concerts for The Mis-Education Of Lauryn Hill album and she touched me so much. I couldn’t take my eyes off of her. Her swag was like on 1000 and she was so naturally talented. At the end of the show, she said, “If I can be here, anybody in this audience can be here. All it takes is hard work.” I never forgot that and I said, “I’m going never give up.”

What other female emcees influenced you?

Foxy Brown and Lil Kim, “I love Lil Kim.” I love Remy Ma and loved the way she used to flow. I used to think she can keep up with a lot of guys and I admired her for that. I’m trying to be like that when I grow up and I also want to be commercial. I think Remy was completely underrated. I think Remy should have been way bigger than what she was. And who knows what would of happen, but I really love Remy.

How do you feel about the current state of female Hip-Hop?

I actually like where it’s going. A lot of doors are opening up. There’s Brianna, Lola Monroe and Iggy Azalea. The doors are opening back up.

Do you think that in order for a female to succeed in this industry she has to dress and rap a certain way or do you think people should kill that stereotype? 

I mean if they’re not talented yes, but me personality, I can do that. I can put on a bikini but I don’t feel like I have to. This is why I admire MC Lyte. She got respect from everybody, no matter what and that’s the way I am focusing on.

Speaking of putting on a bikini, your Smooth magazine cover is dope, it’s amazing.

Thanks {laugh}. That was almost my first shoot, it was a little rough but I did it. I thought about Pharrell.

How did you feel when you heard they wanted to put you on the cover?

Well, I felt just gratitude. I was very gracious.

You’re also featured in the New York Daily News, congrats.

Thanks and yes, that was very big for me and my grandma. I walked around the park I had pretty much grown up in. That was a very great moment that I was able to do that because I used to be spitting and battling guys in that same park. They gave me respect when I was a kid. I was spitting since I was able to spell.

I know your mother is so proud of you. I read that after her funeral, you went straight to the studio.

I did.

From that moment, did 50 Cent look at you in a different light because that showed your hunger?

It showed my hunger, I will always be hungry. You couldn’t take that away from me. That’s how I was expressing my sorrow and I think that’s the way I mourned. I didn’t really focus on death too much because I knew she always wanted me to be a star. I just went in there and did what I had to do. It made me go ever faster and I was already on a high-pace. Now I’m a beast. If I say, “I want to be the female 50; I have to stay in the studio.”

Do you feel any pressure since you’re coming out under the G-Unit umbrella?

For some reason, I do not feel one once of pressure. I don’t feel nervous. God is with me 24/7, protecting me. Pressure is not a comfortable feeling. What I am feeling is comfort.

When people listen to your music, what do you want them to walk away with?

I want them to walk away with what I walked away with when I listened to Biggie Small and Lauryn Hill’s music. I think Biggie’s wordplay was astonishing. I was intrigued by how he put words together and I hope that people can hear that in my music. “Like she nice, how she said it like that, flow it like that or even put it like that.” Sometimes it’s not what you say; it’s how you say it. I say everything with so much conviction that you actually believe it.

Do you think your success came overnight or your worked hard and paid your dues to get to where you are at?

No, it didn’t come over night at all. I think that’s another reason why I am so comfortable and don’t feel any pressure. God had prepared me for this day, it was a long road and I’m still not at the finish line but I can see it now. I could just walk to it comfortably now, knowing I got this.

You just released a visual for “Love”, what’s the next video you plan on releasing?

We shot the “Love” video in about a couple of hours and it turned out pretty nice. I was happy with the finish product. We’re going to shoot videos for “Everything Okay” Ft. 50 Cent and “Do Your Thing” Ft. 50 Cent, Kidd Kidd and Shaun White.

Are we going to get an album from you this year?

Yes, I’m hoping around Christmas.

What’s some advice that 50 gave you?

He taught me what it to takes to be a star, the qualities that I need and it was good music, personality, appearances and stage presence.

How are the fans treating you?

I love my fans. I call them diamonds and rubies. The guys are diamonds and the girls are rubies and that’s because they’re special to me and they’re gems and I need them. I love them and they’re treating me good. They’re so dedicated so far.

Any advice you want to give to up & coming female rappers or final words?

Don’t sleep with execs; it won’t get you to the top. You will actually lose respect. Special thanks to the fans for their love and support.

For more on Precious Paris, follow her @PreciousParis

Photo credit: Shareif Ziyadat

Words by @donbleek88

I also posted this interview on HipHopWeekly.com

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