Yelawolf performing at Bumbershoot in 2012
|Birth name||Michael Wayne Atha|
|Born||(1979-12-30) December 30, 1979|
|Origin||Gadsden, Alabama, United States|
‘Radioactive’ is the fall out of my life’s inspirations, a testament to my ability to survive it all and to tell the story.
You don’t want to get stuck with a record that you’ve done with someone that you feel obligated to put out – that’s not really dope, just because you made an effort to get together and work.
I definitely prefer intimate crowds. I mean, those are always the best shows, like, a small venue. Packed to the gills. Hot, sweaty. Those are always the fun shows.
I just want to make a classic. Classic is the standard. I’m just trying to make music that will last a lifetime.
My grandmother, grandfather, my mom – we’ve always been driven by laughter. It’s what held us together. Thanksgivings, any kind of family get-together, we usually end up in tears.
For real, some of my favorite music is Mexican. It’s something about the bassline and the drumming. I can’t even speak Spanish, but that’s probably why I like it so much.
I think any artist that’s going to become anything in this world faces humility: with great humility comes great success.
Sometimes I want to party, sometimes I want to fight and sometimes I want to cry.
You learn how to be an individual quick after 15 schools, man. After the first five or six, you realize you’re always gonna be the new kid.
You can usually tell when people aren’t being authentic, but that goes for every artist, not just white artists.
Fans are all I care about – to be honest. If they stop coming to the shows, then I will get worried.
Anyone can relate to struggle, whether you’re European or Asian. Anyone can relate to having to get up and go to work and eat.
Where I’m from is like ‘Hustle & Flow’ versus ‘8 Mile.’ It’s that really grimy, box-Chevy, dope-boy, working-class music.
This is hip-hop. If you’ve got something you want to rap about, just rap about it, man.
My homies in Gadsden aren’t as exposed as I am culturally, which is awesome – that’s why I love going home. I’m in the kitchen with people who don’t know anything but the simple life, what’s important to them, and what’s dope.
I can tell you that when you’re willing to give your life up to see a dream through, the reward is great.
People are not really that forgiving when they pay for tickets to come see you and you don’t show up.
I don’t sit under the tattoo gun unless I’m sold on it completely and it will define me as a person.
I equally love both, classic rock and hip-hop. I love all music, really, and I really use classic rock a lot. I’m heavily influenced by that melodically in my music. I can’t really separate the two.
Triple 6 Mafia and Mystikal in Atlanta was one of my first shows. I remember how sweaty and smashed up everybody was, and it was so punk rock.
‘Yela’ represents hunger, life, light, fire, power. ‘Wolf’ speaks to my fighting spirit. The soul I put in my music.
You have to fall. You have to understand what that feels like. For what I want in my life, and for where I want to go with this music, you gotta be humiliated, man. You gotta understand what that feels like. It just makes you stronger.
I’m not ashamed of anything that I’ve done because when I did it, I was passionate about it and I was doing it for a reason.
I just picked up a lot of classic-rock, melodic influence from my mom, music that she listened to, like 10,000 Maniacs, Led Zeppelin, REO Speedwagon and Yes.
Hip-hop is the only music in the world where you can take any instrument and make it hip hop. It’s anybody’s music. It’s what you make of it. That’s for anything you do in life.
I’m from the South, and there’s a different understanding of how to chop. There’s a syllable play. It’s a delicate art. Your accent has a lot to do with it. If you’re from a certain area, words don’t roll of your tongue as slick.
I love performing. I love getting out there. It’s kind of like why I make music.
I’m never in the mood to eat or drink when I get to a show. I’m just too nerved out.
I do so much music that it’s like a fog, and I can’t even remember all of it.
I don’t go to clubs and throw money and pop bottles. That’s not my thing, no disrespect.
Most of my albums have a concept. They all have some kind of theme, some kind of feeling. I really take pride in that.
I’m always gonna have the darker edgy music; it is always in my pocket because it comes so naturally to me.
The way I perceive an album to sound and the way I put out mixtapes are two different energies. There’s a different focus; there’s a different sound.