INTERVIEW: Flipp Dinero chops it up about his hit song "Leave Me Alone," relationship with Joey Bada$$, his top 5 New York rappers and more.
Flipp Dinero's buzz has increased significantly this summer. The Brooklyn native released two projects within the span of a year, The Guala Way and his most recent, GuaLa See GuaLa. The latter included his smash single, "Leave Me Alone" that's been everywhere this summer. The single caught the attention of major celebrities like Drake, Odell Beckham Jr., Kim Kardashian, Travis Scott, Kylie Jenner and more who've posted videos of them singing the song's infectious hook on their Snapchat's and Instagram Story. Needless to say, he's someone who's getting ready to blow up.
Last night, Flipp Dinero announced his new record deal with DJ Khaled's We The Best Music Group, Cinematic Music Group and Epic Records. With the major label machine behind him, it's only a matter of time until he really blows up.
We caught up with Flipp Dinero last week to speak about his single, "Leave Me Alone," his relationship with Tory Lanez, his top five rappers from New York and more.
This interview has been edited for clarity.
HNHH: I’m glad to be on the phone with you. First of all, congratulations on everything. I heard you were on the red carpet for the VMAs. How was that?
Flipp: Yeah. That was dope It was a new experience. All the lights and cameras. It was definitely a fun experience. I appreciated it.
What was your favorite part of the evening? Was that your first red carpet experience?
That was my first red carpet experience ever. I’m straight from the hood. Imagine being straight from the hood to being on the red carpet. It’s mind boggling. It’s baffling.
Congratulations. You released two EPs within the span of the year. The Guala Way EP and GuaLa See GuaLa. There’s an evident amount of growth between each project despite the fact that they were released within the same year. So, I was just wondering what the creative process was when you approached both projects?
The creative process was crazy because it was like at that point in time in my life The Guala Way, I was literally just taking music seriously and you can see it because you have tracks like "Time Goes down", "Roses", "Say No More." It shows the versatility. GuaLa See GuaLa is more so me breaking out and showing people I can still be versatile but I can still be more unique as well. So, the music that I have in store now is even more crazy. It’s on a different level. I can’t wait to drop it.
So, from what you learned during the recording process with The Guala Way, how did you apply that to Guala See Guala? I’m sure there were things you learned in the recording process and the creative process.
When I was making The Guala Way, it was pretty much me saying my emotions. Just going in the studio and not caring what people have to say about what type of music I make. That’s why you have certain tracks like, the love songs, the serious songs, the trap songs. Guala See Guala was more like, I know which direction I want to go in because Flipp is evolving. That’s how you have "Leave Me Alone", "G’z", "Trappin." It just molded me. It made me grow in a certain type of way. Actions speak louder than words in this situation.
You just touched on "Leave Me Alone." That’s one of your biggest songs out right now. There’s been clips of everybody vibing to it. From OBJ to Kim Kardashian. I recently saw you post Travis Scott and Kylie Jenner vibing out to it as well. Who was the most surprising person that you’ve seen vibing out to the track?
I don’t know man. Honestly, I can’t even say who’s the most crazy person vibing out to it. I’m shocked everyone is vibing out to it.
So, let me ask you this. I believe OBJ was one of the first celebrities to post a video of themselves dancing to the song. What was your reaction to that?
I was shocked. I was caught off guard. I couldn’t believe it. I just knew from that point I was onto something. The track could actually go far. Not because Odell has a huge following but because someone of that stature found attraction to my music so other people will attraction to my music as well. It was a wake-up call like oh shit, you can really do this Flipp.
You had G Herbo on your latest project for the remix of "Time Goes Down", how did that come about and what’s the relationship between you two?
Pretty much, my big bro Shipes had lined it up. I made this track called "Time Goes Down." I was vibing on it. I was like, I want the craziest feature on this. Who do you feel would be crazy to get on this track. My bro P just kept saying Herb. My big bro Shipes knows Herb so I hit up Shipes like do you think it would be possible to pitch this track to Herb. He pitched it to Herb and he was instantly like, "Nah this is hard." He came through, laid the verse, shot the video with me and we built a relationship from there. We just kept it solid. He just told me keep going, stay focused and from that day, I appreciate him and his words helped me a lot. It made me prosper even more. I applied that same pressure for "Time Goes Down" to "Leave Me Alone" and that video blew.
It’s interesting hearing your music because you do have that melodic aspect to it but you don’t compromise your lyricism either. I was just wondering who were some artists that helped inspire your sound?
Bob Marley, Dennis Brown, Max B, Drake, Tory Lanez. I listen to a lot of people. I listen to a lot of Haitian music too and classical music. My ear is not just only to rap. I started in the church.
So you used to sing in church?
That’s how I started. As a little kid. I grew up in a church.
How’d you transition from singing in church to rapping? Was that something that developed naturally over time?
It started off as me just being a singer. As I got older, I had a love for lyricism and rap. I just always loved rap music. Styles P, Jadakiss, Sheek Louch, I always liked that. As I listened to them, I would always try to be like them, try to put my word play together. Like, "Yo, my name is Flipp, I’m on some other type of shit, probably fuck up on ya bitch, she all up on my dick." And then I just kept doing that and working on my flow. I never stopped singing. It was times, I’ll be like damn, I need someone to sing on my hook and that’s where I’ll come in and sing on my own hook. People will be like, "Yo that sound crazy Flipp." So, I just started putting more of the melody into my rap and I came up with my own flow. I could switch it up whenever I want to.
You just mentioned Tory Lanez and I know you were opening for him on the Memories Don’t Die Tour earlier this year. I was wondering what’s the most memorable piece of advice Tory Lanez gave you on tour?
Always stay focused. I learned a lot from him. That’s my big brother. I was just talking to him. He always tells me to stay focused and stay on my A-game, do what I have to do. When I feel tired, that’s the time to work even harder. So, he drops jewels, he gave me diamonds. So, I’m running with it and I’m shooting straight to the top. So, I’m thankful.
Can we expect any collaborations with you two in the near future?
Definitely. Of course.
Have you guys already been in the studio together?
I got you. Joey Bada$$ is someone who has been riding with you and you’re both signed to the same label. How has the relationship evolved since you guys met? Did you guys first meet through music or in the streets or something?
It was both. We met in the streets but we met off music. We met through music people and when we met, we just bonded off rip on some brother shit. Just speaking on some where we’re from in Brooklyn and then it got to the music. And he’s like "I know you make music, your music is fire, I want to work with you." That’s how it happened. He embraced me and he put me on, he gave me a cosign. Joey is my big brother. I got nothing but love for him.
I know that you and Jay Critch recently did that "Wanna Ball" song. It feels like there's a lot of people who are looking at you two as the next ones out of NYC. So, what are you thoughts on the current state of New York Hip Hop?
I feel like we’re in a good space because you got niggas like me and Critch, Young MA, Casanova. All these rappers that are really putting in work for New York. A-Boogie, Don Q, we’re working. We’re doing what we’re supposed to. Shoutout to all of them.
I know you mentioned Max B before. If you could give me a tentative top 5 New York rappers in your opinion, who would you put up there?
Jada, Biggie, Max B, Styles P, gotta throw Joey in there.
That’s what’s up. What are your plans for the rest of the year?
Keep grinding. I got a mixtape that’s gonna drop real soon. I got another EP that’s gonna drop. I got videos on the way. A lot of good shit. A lot of surprising shit. I just got to stay focused.
Is there anything you can tell us about the mixtape or the EP? Any exclusive details?
It’s gonna be fire.
I’m excited for that bro. Thank you so much for talking to me.
I appreciate you even more. Thank you for everything.