Friends & Family
As we stated in the intro, it was Vince Staples who first convinced Joey Fatts to give music a shot, but there's way more to the story. When Fatts was living out of his car and trying to figure out what came next, it was his cousin, Staples, who said he should try his hand at rapping. Joey quickly realized he had a knack for putting rhymes together, but when he couldn't convince producers to slide him beats, he decided he needed to just make them himself. Guess what? He was great at that too. The two formed Cutthroat Records along with another California up-and-comer A$ton Matthews, and the rest was history. As for Matthews, the story of how the two met is actually pretty awesome. He told Mass Appeal in 2013, "A$ton was Vince’s homie. I never knew A$ton until like last year, in 2012 when I started rapping. Vince, I knew Vince since he was younger. Vince is like my brother, you know, he’s like family. He was always around so we were always kicking it with each other. But uh, Vince was rapping, I had just started rapping and this was like December 2011. I had just started recording. I had hit a lick for an iMac. I had robbed a crib for an iMac or whatever and then uh, after I was recording or whatever, you know, niggas go through notions of 'fuck this shit. This shit ain’t paying off.' So I was like man, fuck this rap shit. This shit isn't working. This was before I dropped the track “Cutthroat.” Actually, it was right after I dropped “Cutthroat,” I was gonna stop rapping. I was like man this shit weak. So then I tweeted 'Yo, who want a iMac?' Vince retweeted it and A$ton hit me up like, 'yo, what’s good, I’m trying to get that.' Then Vince linked us up. We met at like a Burger King and I sold him the computer.
Then we started chopping it up, just talking about street shit and talking about what we wanted to do and our vision with the rap shit. And then we realized that we shared the same interests. We just instantly clicked. He was already telling me about all the fake niggas in the industry and I was new to the rap game. So I was like 'yeah, I’m not trying to go through that.' He seemed like a real nigga, so we started to fuck around. Then we started hanging with each other real tough around January 2012. And then, I ended up moving in with him. The garage that I told you that I lived in was his garage. I moved into his garage in July 2012 and I started recording all my shit there and ever since then, we’ve been doing the Cutthroat shit. The Cutthroat shit was already like, the vision of my hood. That’s where me and Vince from. So we just made an entertainment side."
Fast forward to a few months later, and Fatts passes a few of his beats to a friend that knows A$AP Mob head honcho Yams. He didn't hear anything until he got a random call from A$AP Rocky, where he told Joey that he was currently his favorite producer and he wanted to work with him. This led to a fast friendship and the Long.Live.A$AP standout track and not-so-subtle SpaceGhostPurrp diss "Jodye", which Fatts produced. That gave Fatts the notoriety and momentum he needed to really make his music career take off.
As time went on and Joey Fatts had started to gain some traction, word spread to the dirty South. Waka Flocka had Joey put pen to paper as the first artist signed to his 36Brickhouse imprint, although, as he told us on Twitter, he is currently independent. You can hear the Turn Up Gawd explain the 36Brickhouse deal in his interview with Hot 97 below.