A$AP Ferg has had a year filled with standout guest appearances on songs with artists ranging from Haim to Young Thug, memorable performances at this year'sCoachella Valley Music & Arts Festival in Indio and more with his nonstop drive.
“I think (my drive) comes from not having... things... when I needed them. Not being able to afford things,” said A$AP Ferg, whose real name is Darold Ferguson Jr. “You don't ever want that feeling. You always want a feeling of comfort and of being able to get or consume whatever you want.
“The other major part of my drive is to change the world, To change the world through music. I want to bring people together through music, just bridge the gap through different worlds, the hood and all the hippies.”
A$AP Ferg is set to perform Saturday at the sold-out HARDfest Summerwith the AS$AP Mob featuring A$AP Rocky, A$AP Nast, A$AP Twelvyand more. The outdoor music festival takes place this Saturday and Sunday at the Whittier Narrows Recreation Area in El Monte.
A$AP Ferg, from New York's Harlem, said he's always experimenting with his live show performances, including new songs and freestyles depending on the crowd's reaction and energy.
“Every crowd is different,” he said. “I like to adapt to whatever environment I'm in.”
He thinks his solo performance the second weekend of Coachella this year was better than his first-weekend performance which featured members of the A$AP Mob.
“I remember the first week being sort of like a bummer,” he said. “The second week was more turnt up, probably because people knew what to expect. There was even more people. The energy was there. I gave them the Mob show the first week, and the second week, I gave them my show. I'm used to doing on tour by myself.”
A$SAP Ferg said his rapping style, which fluctuates from battle rapping to harmonizing depending on the track, is his own, but he admires legendary hip-hop artist Jay Z for his delivery and wordplay as well as the late legend Notorious B.I.G. for his charisma and storytelling.
“I would always study an artist's style,” he said. “I make my own style up, but I will give you the same thing they are giving you but in my own way. My style is really no style. It's that unorthodox style. I used to have trouble with that when I first started. I used to think nobody is going to notice me and recognize my voice. But maybe that's a good thing.”
While the A$AP Mob has an album ready to release in August, A$SAP Ferg is currently working on material for a new album himself. He said he's been able to guest on so much new music because he's “connected” to the hip-hop industry.
“I'm really into the feel with this hip-hop thing,” he said. “I know everything that's going on. I know every new rapper. From a 16-year-old kid from Philly to what J-Hov (Jay Z) is doing.”
He said he enjoyed working with indie rockers Haim on the band's remix to “My Song 5.”
“We hung out previously before that (song),” he said. “We had gone to parties and an art gallery show. We went to all these events. Then we came back to the studio. We hang out a lot.”
Besides music, A$AP Ferg also designs clothing for his Trap Lord clothing line (also the name of his debut album), which is sold as part of his touring merchandise.
“Everything you see, my hands touched it,” A$SAP Ferg said, adding he even has a Trap Lord app so his fans can keep track of all the songs and merchandise and everything else he has on their smartphones.