050 Boyz are a group of 3 artists hailing from Newark, and East Orange New Jersey. With their own unique styles are are on mission to bring Hip Hop Back.
Q. Hi guys, introduce yourselves and tell us about how 050 Boyz got started
Rid da Kid — It’s RiqDaKid. 050 Boyz got started through the process of coming together to work with Prince AK musically.
Tru Trilla — Everything Jersey, what’s good, this Tru Trilla. We got started a couple of years ago as far as the group 050 goes. My bro Fee came up with the name, it’s the numerical code for Jersey so we embrace it and brand it and Prince AK was bridging it together
Prince AK — I’m Prince AK of the 050 Boyz. We got started after I called Trilla & told Riq da Kid we’re about to form a group & we made it happen
Q. You’ve worked with Treach from Naughty By Nature. How was it working with someone from you’re own area of New Jersey, especially from a group as legendary as Naughty By Nature?
Riq da Kid — It’s a blessing, to get guidance from Treach or to have toured with them during the Garden State Greats project. Observing how to perform and make songs. Vin Rock was supportive outside of music working with youth. That’s another passion of mine. And I’ve done a couple joints with KayGee working on scores for the movie “CookOut 2”. Plus KayGee helped me with my first group Collizion’s second mixtape
Tru Trilla — Man it was an honor you know, the warrior embraced the movement and hasn’t stop supporting it yet. Salute to my bro !!
Prince AK — It’s a blessing to have him around because we need that guidance on doing & making the right decisions
Q. Prince AK, you like many other hip-hop artist have gone into acting. What attracted you to acting and has a role ever tempted you to stop working on your music and focus on your film career? And would you want to do something similar to Ice Cube, going from a rapper to being a house hold name in film?
Prince AK — I went to school for acting years ago and was taught by Tracey Moore who also taught a lot of other well know artists like 50 Cent and Busta Rhymes. It meant that though I started in music, I did in fact take a lot of years out to focus on acting before I returned to music again, and now continue to do both. I’ve appeared in independent film and tv shows, like “The Zoo” and “Black Van”, so really in my case I’ve always done both one way or another. So I’d be down to be a household name in rapping and film.
Q. And Riq & Tru, we hear you’ve also had some acting roles. Tell us about those, and would you see that as a possible future career?
Riq da Kid — Yes, since I was little I always wanted to be on TV, but when music became my passion I always said I would perfect music then transition over to acting. I had a small part in “Zoo” the movie and
also in “Black Van” playing one of Treach’s childhood friends, but I was also masked playing one of the characters who would kidnap people! lol There may be a Zoo series, so it’s possible I will have a dope role in that
Tru Trilla — yes, I had a nice spot in “Nicknames” produced by Salaadin Newark. Plus the Zoo series up and some other coming projects are underway, so you would see us splashing it up
Q. Clinton, you’ve produced the whole album, how did you approach the overall concept? Was there any criteria laid down by the group for a sound they were looking for, or did you already have an understanding of what would work best given you’ve known them for some time?
Clinton Place Peace. When an artist asks me to make beats like something they’ve heard, it’s kind of offensive!! LOL. And I do the absolute opposite. When it comes to creating beats, I have never created a beat with an artist or group in mind. My motto about my music is I do music I like with the hopes the artist likes it.
The 050 Boyz didn’t ask for a specific sound. Prince AK got at me and asked if I wanted to do a mixtape with them. I’ve known him for 20+ years. Since our street hustling days, long before we took this music thing serious. So it wasn’t even a question. I got his email and sent like 20 beats that night. I’ve produced whole albums for a few artists. When they get at me about their project, I may make a few new beats, but most of the time I go through my catalogue and randomly select joints. LOL!
I’m actually horrible at picking beats for artists. I feel I’m more of a producer’s producer. I’ve been told my beats are ahead of their time. I believe that. But not in a arrogant way. I just feel it seems like it takes artists a longer time to process my sound. They get the beats and it’s like, Whoa, where is this going. They have to put the beats away and come back to them. In the 050 Boyz case, which is rare, they attacked the joints as soon as they got them. They didn’t want the same olé sounding music that 90% of new artists want. They are seasoned and I feel that played a part in why the project came out the way it did.
Q. And 050 Boyz, do you find it better when one or maybe two people produce an album? Or are you also interested in the modern take of having multiple producers on one project?
Riq da Kid — Well I honestly think it’s better too have 1 or 2 because it gives you more of a consistent sound
Tru Trilla — Well that’s an option, but so far we have a lot of up and coming projects produced by one producer. I think it brings you and the producer working closer together and makes it more personal so the listener gets the whole pie instead of a slice
Prince AK — We definitely appreciate different sounds, but Clinton had everything we needed to make an LP with an original sound
Q. When watching your “Hot Damn” video you had that MOP kind of vibe in the visuals. Are there any hip-hop groups/artist you source inspiration from when performing or start recording?
Riq da Kid — Run DMC, MOP and definitely Naughty by Nature.. Their show performances are crazy!
Tru Trilla — There’s a lot of warriors, but we really just go in with the State on our back and the people on our mind
Prince AK — Shout out to MOP, but my big bruh Trigger Treach gives me a lot of inspiration.
Q. Everything 050, when is it out? Why that title and what does the project mean to you guys?
Riq da Kid — It drops August 4th. The title meant Everything Jersey! Everything onpoint! That Jersey sound, that hiphop boom bap sound was missing. So it was like everything was on 050 Boyz to bring it back! It’s our blood sweat and tears. Our struggle, our baby our success together. It means everything
Tru Trilla — It means a whole lot. For instance, it’s bringing back skillful flows, jewels dropping, everything on point. The production is amazing, that keeps everything on the same page, everything Jersey or everything 050. It means what it says, you’re getting everything Jersey. August 4th is the due date for the album, we got a lot of flame throwing on this project
Prince AK - August 4th it drops and we Ccose that title because it represents Jersey Hip-Hop and it means a hell of a lot to us
Q. The connection to your home State is obviously important to you. Through your music, what would hope to achieve for New Jersey?
Riq da Kid - Originality. Everyone not being afraid to sound like where they’re from just to be successful. Acknowledgement for our state again and to bring up new artists and show our youth that they can dream again
Tru Trilla - To open doors as well as mentor new young spitters with a purpose of maintaining your identity and put Jersey right back in the arena of greatness
Prince AK — Yeah, our mission is to open doors for our town, that’s always been at the heart of what we’re about.
Q. From the current crop of new artists who’ve emerged onto the scene in the past few years, who are you feeling and why?
Riq da Kid — JCole, he’s unique and original, not afraid to be himself and be hiphop. Kendrick Lamar, a lyrical beast and pushes the envelope. Meek Mill for energy and Tink, she’s dope
Tru Trilla — I’m feeling J Cole, Joey Bada$$, Kendrick, they’re just coasting in their own lanes and being different. Thats dope!!!
Prince AK — Drake, Kendrick & Rich Homie Quan
Q. And who are your top 5 rappers of all time and why?
Riq da Kid — Nas, B.I.G, Jay‑Z, Pac, and Rakim
Tru Trilla — I don’t have a top five really, there’s a lot of greatness out there. But I’d say 2pac, Biggie, KRS‑1, Lakim Shabazz, Scarface
Prince AK — Biggie, Nas. Lox, 50 Cent and Eminem
Q. Anything else you’d like to say to our readers in the UK? Where can they find you online?
Riq da Kid — Make sure y’all get “Everything 050” on August 4th. Twitter & instagram: RiqDaKid_050
Tru Trilla — Shout out to I Am Hip Hop Magazine and the readers, salute to y’all, big ups!! We work for you. August 4th,Everything 050 drops, support real music. Get at us on Facebook Page “050Boyz” or on twitter @050_Boyz. My own twitter account is @EgoFree2_050
Prince AK — Big up to all the heads in the UK who appreciate that real hip hop sound, we’re just like you. Thanks to I Am Hip Hop Magazine for reachin out. You can find me on twitter @PrinceAK_050