Hip-hop veteran AZ released a music video on Friday for his single “Red Magic.” The song will appear on the highly-anticipated album Doe or Die 2, which is expected to be released in early 2015. The video premiere party took place on Thursday at stylish West Harlem club, 9A Kitchen and Lounge, and was attended by industry professionals, tastemakers, hip-hop artists, and reality stars, including Mendeecees Harris of VH1's "Love and Hip Hop."
"I've always been a fan of AZ's music since he came out with Nas," Harris told AXS. "He talks about what I can relate to. I'm always going to be ears open, listening to it."
The “Red Magic” video features AZ as a rapper in a slump before he takes a pill that transforms him. Suddenly he’s working out, writing rhymes, wining and dining women, driving a Maybach, and otherwise living a more fabulous life. “Red Magic” director, Jynx Million, explained that the video’s concept came from the movie “Limitless.”
“When he takes the pill, he’s able to write music now, he’s riding bikes now, he’s getting out of the slump that he was in,” Jynx told AXS. “[In the video] he had only wrote two or three songs for Do or Die 2, now he can write the whole album.” Jynx also worked on a freestyle, in-studio video called “Genesis” for AZ.
In an exclusive interview with AXS, AZ expounded on the “Limitless” theme.
“I love that movie, and I love the fact that he took a pill that made him do everything in one day,” the Brooklyn-bred rapper said. “That’s how I want to do things... everything in one day. I want to get it all done in 24 hours.”
The Doe or Die 2 album, however, has been years in the making. AZ said that the wait is almost over.
“It’s coming; top of the year,” he said, matter-of-factly. “I’m going to put out another single close to October, November... then the top of the year I’m looking to drop the album.
“I’m trying to close the album up,” he said in regards to artist and production features on the project. “We get closer to the end of the year, you’ll start hearing everything.”
Nearly every interview or mention of AZ says that he is either the most underrated MC or one of the most underrated MC s of all time. The Grammy-nominated rapper said he has no problem with the label.
“It’s a tough job but somebody’s gotta do it,” he told AXS. “Knowing that I’m up there with the greats, I guess it’s the fact that I’m not in that system, so I’m not being pushed with the greats, so they call it ‘underrated’ in that sense... radio play, and all that. Pound for pound, I can stand with the best of them.”
He also spoke on what keeps him motivated to stay on the grind after decades in the rap game.
“Just for the love for the game,” he said. “I got love for the game. I’ve been doing this for 20 years, it’s all I know.”
AZ is being humble, however. With some coaxing, he revealed that he has some other business ventures on the horizon.
“I’m trying to work on these dot-coms,” AZ intimated. “Technology is everything right now. I’m working on movies... you know I got my own video [production company], BLOCKHUSTLER [Films], and we’re just trying to shoot movies and videos. That’s my plan right now. I ain’t going nowhere.”