Ski Mask The Slump God Is Finally Ready To Talk His Sh*t (2024)

Ski Mask The Slump God Is Finally Ready To Talk His Sh*t (1)

Photo byDillon Dreiling

Believe it or not, it’s already been a decade since the SoundCloud rap era first ignited, and we’re seeing the lasting impact of the moshpit-dwelling artists who defined the movement.

In the mid-2010s, rappers like Ski Mask The Slump God and XXXTentacion blew up out of nowhere with wildly energetic, distorted songs that they recorded on blown-out iPod headphones. It was a formative period when artists were figuring out how to use the internet as a way to cut out the middleman and reach fans directly, uploading raw, in-your-face songs straight to SoundCloud.

Before long, labels were forced to pay attention to a whole new wave of artists who had built massive cult followings on their own. And the labels weren’t the only ones watching. Across America, kids were inspired to make their own DIY songs, and a decade later, we're witnessing the rise of a new generation of rappers like Yeat and Ken Carson who were influenced heavily by SoundCloud pioneers.

Ski Mask is a low key guy by nature, and he doesn’t like to take too much credit for anything, so when I ask him about his influence in rap, he tries to downplay it. But with a little prodding, he finally allows himself to talk his sh*t. "I'm usually a humble dude, but I've definitely seen a lot of my impact,” he says. “It's hella cool to see how music has changed and how we kind of influenced that—at least the underground part. It's definitely gone in a crazy direction ever since we came out.”

Some of the SoundCloud era’s most important figures, including XXXTentacion, Juice WRLD, and Lil Peep, have had their lives tragically cut short, and artists like Ski Mask are left to carry the torch. As he reflects on his own influence, Ski Mask's status as a surviving member of the scene clearly isn’t lost on him. "It's cool to be here and experience it.”

“I’ve definitely been through a lot,” he continues, looking back on the challenges he’s faced over the years. “I’ve had a lot of friends pass away. I’ve been in the rap game for almost 10 years. I’ve been tested and passed for sure. Plenty of times.” The 28-year-old Fort Lauderdale, Florida rapper is open about the toll that these tragedies have had on him, but as he sits in Complex’s Los Angeles studio before the release of his new album, 11th Dimension, he’s ready to look forward.

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Ski Mask The Slump God reveals details about Juice WRLD collab "Wake Up!" on his new album out tonight 👀. #SkiMaskTheSlumpGod #JuiceWRLD

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11th Dimension is his most ambitious project to date, revolving around a loose concept that involves multiple characters created by Ski. As he explains it, “There's a few characters that represent myself in each dimension. It's basically me going through the dimensions and collecting each piece to feel whole again.” Stylistically, the album covers a lot of ground, ranging from high-energy moshpit songs to melodic alternative rock tracks, and it features guest appearances from Juice WRLD, Future, Corbin, and Skillibeng.

Ski has also been spending a lot of his time working on clothes lately, revealing that he’s about to come out with a new brand called Castle, in partnership with Revenge. He has a longstanding relationship with the Revenge, dating back to 2017 when he and X met the brand’s co-founders Han and Garette in Florida, and now they're putting out a collection together, which will be available on Sunday, June 9, at 2:00 p.m. PT. The drop, which features a limited-edition figurine of Ski Mask, will be available on Revenge's website via an email link to members (or through Ski's Instagram page).

Before the release of 11th Dimension, Ski Mask pulled up to Complex for a conversation about his current headspace, memories with Juice WRLD, and what to expect on the album. The interview, lightly edited for clarity, is below.

Ski Mask The Slump God Is Finally Ready To Talk His Sh*t (4)

Photo byRyley Paskal

How's life?
Things are going pretty well right now. I finished up the album finally. f*ck. I know a lot of people have been waiting on that and cursing me out about it. [Laughs.] So that's a good thing. I'm hella excited.

What else has been taking up your time?
I just got this slushy machine at the crib, so I've been making random ass slushies. I've been buying random sodas and just pouring it in that motherf*cker. Oh, and League of Legends. I don't know what it is… I used to hate that game, but now I'm addicted.

How would you describe your headspace lately?
Focused. I've been hella focused on what I need to do to get this music out for people. I've been planning a lot of things, like a new merch brand that I'm about to drop. And I've been working on bringing to life these characters that I have for the album and creating a world around it.

What do you have planned for the merch brand?
I'm friends with the people that make Revenge. I've been friends with them for a while and I always wanted to have another brand. I used to sell this brand called Very Rare, which was my sh*t. It's still my LLC, but I'm about to come out with a new brand called Castle with Revenge. They're going to help me with the designs. We already have the first ones that are about to drop, and then I'm going to just continuously drop with a new collection every month type thing.

Besides making slushies and working on merch, what's an average day in your life these days?
I wake up, go downstairs, feed my Frenchie, let her outside... What else? Smoke. Hop on the PC. I'm trying to stream soon, so I'll probably do that after I drop the album. But usually, I'm a homebody. I stay home more than I go out nowadays.

I know you spend a lot of time with DJ Scheme. What's your favorite thing about him?
My favorite thing about DJ Scheme is how energized and motivating he is.

What's your least favorite thing about him?
My least favorite thing is how much of a yapper he is. Dude be yapping sometimes, I ain't going to lie. [Laughs.]

What does he yap about?
Anything! Any and everything. He could be talking about the most basic sh*t. If he's watching sports, he's yelling at the top of his lungs, talking about the most basic sh*t. He'll get on the table in the studio... King yapper.

Let's talk about this album... When did the process begin?
It began a while back, honestly. I haven't dropped in a while, so there's music from far back, and then there's music that's from really close. I'd say a year. Or maybe even two.

What was your goal for this album?
I wanted to really create a world for this album. I don't think I've really done that for any others. I wanted to add stage production, because I never usually use stage production, so I wanted to create a world and bring to life different characters. The album trailer shows a lot of that, and the performances, too.

What should we know about the characters?
The album's called 11th Dimension, and there's a few characters that represent myself in each dimension. It's basically me going through the dimensions and collecting each piece to feel whole again.

What's your favorite thing about 11th Dimension?
I really like the alternative songs. I feel like people are going to receive those well because people loved the other alternative songs that I've tried. So I had to tap back into that. And, of course, the mosh and rage music. My bread and butter.

How would you describe this album to someone who has not heard it?
It's really hard to describe, because it's not really one genre. There's so many genres on this. I would just say: Keep an open ear and don't expect it to be any certain type of way. It's all over the place, but very cohesive at the same time.

Ski Mask The Slump God Is Finally Ready To Talk His Sh*t (5)

Photo byRyley Paskal

One of my favorites is "Earwax." How did that song come together?
"Earwax" is fire. I had a studio session with Working on Dying, the producer group, and we created a couple songs. At first I didn't like that one, but then after giving it a few more listens, I ended up being in love with it. So I had to come up with the wild name for it because usually I just name songs randomly, like some crazy sh*t.

That song is full of clever lines. How do you come up with that sh*t? Are you the kind of artist who takes notes when funny things come to you throughout your day?
I actually do that, yeah. Things will come to me during the day when I'm not at the studio and I'll write 'em down in my notes. Then when I get to the studio, I'll find some weird way to mesh them together and make it all rhyme. I don't know how to explain it, but it's a process.

Do you usually write out your lyrics?
Hell yeah. I usually write it in paper and pen and then throw it away after. So it was terrible, I had to write the lyrics to 20-something songs just a few days ago.

Most artists I interview these days say they don't write. Why do you like writing your lyrics down instead of freestyling?
I feel like I can get the ideas out better if I can see it, and I'm not just freestyling it. I feel like it's a more well thought-out song if I'm not just freestyling everything.

Do you ever freestyle?
Yeah, I have before. With "Faucet Failure," I did a lot of freestyling, and that's one of the songs where it worked. But sometimes I really don't like freestyling. I feel like it's not really thought-out. But a lot of people like those not thought-out songs. So yeah, sometimes it works.

Another big song on there is "Monsters Inc" with Future. How did that come together?
I used to live in Atlanta and I used to go to this studio that ended up being Future's actual studio. That was his main studio that he always used, and I would see him a lot there. Sometimes I would step in the studio with him and listen to some sh*ts that he was playing. I always wanted to get a song with him, and he knew that. ATL Jacob would always be there, too. So I worked on a song with him, and he ended up having Future on it. That's how it came together.

Let’s talk about "Wake Up!" with Juice WRLD. What's the story behind that one?
Me and Juice recorded that years ago. I think we recorded it around the same time that we did "Nuketown," and I guess this was going to be one of the songs that went on the tape that I did with Juice. We were going to come out with something called Evil Twins, and he says it on this song. But we just never ended up releasing this one. I ended up finding it and it was like, "Yeah, I gotta release this because nobody's really heard it.” A lot of times, they have heard a Juice song or it has leaked or some sh*t, so I have one of those ones that never came out.

Do you remember anything about the actual making of that song?
Yeah, it was a funny session. I remember showing him other songs other than "Nuketown." And "Nuketown" didn't even have an open [verse] on there. I just wanted it to be myself, because I knew it was going to be a good song, and he was like, "Nah, I'm getting on this one." [Laughs.] And he made sure to get on that one, but he got on this song as well. It was pretty funny.

Are there more unreleased Ski and Juice songs?
Not from me, but if we ask Bibby, probably. Yeah.

What do you think of leaks?
When I was just a fan of music, I loved leaks. But now that I'm a maker of music, leaks f*cking suck. So I guess it's a love and a hate kind of thing.

For people who don't know, how do leaks f*ck things up for artists?
Leaks take away streams, f*ck up the money, and just demotivate the artist. It does a lot of things.

Especially if it's an unfinished song...
Exactly. At that point, the artist just doesn't even want to do it. Sometimes they feel like quitting because of that sh*t. I've seen some crazy massive leaks recently. Like some 200-song type things. Crazy. It sucks because now it's not formed in a project, you know what I mean? So it's just randomized music. I don't know, it just f*cks it up for the artist.

What's your favorite song on the album? Or one that you're really proud of?
One is definitely "Earwax." Another one would be "What do you mean?" "WDYM." And... Damn, that's a hard one, because there's a couple good ones on there. I guess "DragonTooth."

What's the last song or album that you heard from another artist that inspired you and made you want to run to the studio?
Kendrick always does that. Who else? One of Yeat's old tapes for sure. And Uzi for sure.

Was there a specific Uzi project?
The one that has "Space Cadet" on it.

You just mentioned Kendrick, and I saw you recently tweeted, "Very interesting beef."
Yeah, very interesting beef. Very interesting beef. They're both good, but I think Kendrick won that beef for sure.

What would a Ski Mask diss song sound like?
Ha!

Would you ever make one?
Probably, yeah. If somebody tries me like that, yeah. I mean, I wouldn't be scared to. It would probably be aggressive. A lot of entendres and f*cking metaphors and sh*t like that. I feel like I could, I've just never had the chance to, really.

I don't want to instigate anything, though, because I love that you're so friendly with everyone.
True. I really don't have no opps in the rap game, for real. So I mean…

You obviously came up in the SoundCloud rap era, and now we're seeing a whole new wave of artists who were inspired by you and your peers. What do you think about how this lane of rap has evolved?
It's hella cool to see how music has changed and how we kind of influenced that—at least the underground part. It's definitely has gone in a crazy direction ever since we came out, so it's hella cool to be here and experience it.

It's funny because you're still a young artist, but you've already been very influential. I'm sure you've seen your impact, right? Talk your sh*t a little bit... [Laughs.]
Very true. I'm usually a humble dude, but I've definitely seen a lot of my impact, even from when I was sampling a lot of songs... Just back then, the impact and the influence was crazy. I'm humble because I appreciate it.

What do you think of the word "underground"?
I mean, it's definitely a definition to explain a certain type of rapper until they get to a certain stage in their career type thing. So I don't really take it as a bad thing. I know some people don't like it, but I never took it as a bad thing. It explains who you are to people who would just say that you're unknown, you know what I mean?

What is the smartest thing you've ever done?
Probably go to jail. [Laughs.] I met X in jail when I was a juvenile. So yeah, a lot came out of that.

What's the dumbest thing you've ever done?
Damn. Probably sell weed when I was young. Yeah, I didn't do it really smartly. I just remember it ending. We got pulled over by an undercover f*cking minivan. That was the craziest sh*t ever. I was pissed.

What's your favorite thing on the internet right now?
Funny Reels.

What kind of Reels?
Just some random funny sh*t. There's just these comedians on Instagram that do hilarious skits. Like, this dude did a skit about the Kendrick and Drake beef and it was f*cking hilarious. He was talking about how Drake was saying that Kendrick's feet are small and all kinds of sh*t.

What's your least favorite thing on the internet right now?
Twitter sex bots. It's got to be. [Laughs.] It's f*cking terrible out there, dog.

What's the biggest misconception about you? What is something people hear wrong?
The biggest misconception about me is people think I'm mysterious. I'm really not, though. I'm really not. I just don't be doing a lot of things, but once I do, you get to see that I'm really not mysterious. I don't really try to portray that. I just don't post enough.

OK, one last easy question before our time is up... What's the meaning of life?
The meaning of life? I mean, happiness with yourself and just being content with what you have.

That's a hard point to get to...
Yeah, it's definitely a hard point to get to, because it's something that material things can't really achieve. It's something that you've got to achieve for yourself.

Ski Mask The Slump God Is Finally Ready To Talk His Sh*t (2024)

FAQs

What made Ski Mask the Slump God famous? ›

He is best known for his association with XXXTentacion, with whom he formed the hip hop collective Members Only in 2014. He is notable for his nostalgic-themed musical production and public image, of which is often clad with multi-colored durags.

When did ski mask release his first song? ›

Ski Mask the Slump God's first song “Felonies” released on March 16, 2014.

Who inspired Ski Mask the Slump God? ›

Inspired by MC's such as Lil Wayne and Busta Rhymes, Ski Mask has a fast, playful flow, and his cartoonish persona edges slightly toward the morbid. In 2013, he met XXXTENTACION at a juvenile detention center, and upon release, they started a group called Very Rare, followed by another one called Members Only.

Was ski mask in jail? ›

I started because my dad is a rapper, actually. But I got arrested when I was a kid, so I went to Juvenile Hall. It was for weed basically. I went to jail and meet XXXtentacion.

What does the ski mask tattoo mean? ›

INK YARD | The ski mask tattoo represent being anonymous and keeping your private life private from society. #tattoo #tattoos #ink #inked #art...

Is ski mask jamaican? ›

Drawing heavy influence from his Jamaican background, he is known for his unique, quick-witted cadence. During an interview with Office Magazine, Ski stated that his stage name comes from him taking too much Xanax when he was younger.

What is ski mask full name? ›

Stokeley Clevon Goulbourne (born April 18, 1996), better known by his stage name Ski Mask the Slump God (formerly stylized as $ki Mask the Slump God), is an american rapper from Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

What disease does Ski Mask the Slump God have? ›

In 2018, he revealed his battle with a "fat boy disease" that required surgery on his heart. Ski Mask had neglected this health issue for years as he focused on his career.

What rap genre is Ski Mask? ›

How much does Ski Mask the Slump God cost? ›

An example fee to book Ski Mask the Slump God is in the starting range of $75,000-$149,999. However, any recent popularity change would cause a price fluctuation well beyond this example. Also, their speaking fee might be different than the fee shown for the cost to perform or to just appear.

How did ski mask girl get famous? ›

The Ski Mask Girl has made a name for herself by posting videos in various differently styled ski masks to hide her identity. According to her TikTok bio, she is the assistant of TooTurntTony, whose website sells merchandise with photos of the Ski Mask Girl beside other women whose faces are also hidden by masks.

What is the history of the ski mask? ›

The name Balaclava originates from the battle of Balaclava during the Crimean War. British soldiers used knitted headgear that covered the whole face and left their mouths and eyes exposed to reduce wind chill.

Did Pooh Shiesty make ski mask popular? ›

The term is a reference to Memphis rapper Pooh Shiesty, who popularized the casual wearing of this type of ski mask as he rose to fame in 2019. He's currently in prison on conspiracy and gun charges.

Why did Ski Mask the Slump God stop making music? ›

The main reason Ski Mask has disappeared is simply. to focus on both this physical and mental health. I think it goes without saying. after everything that happened with both of my friends. John Juice, I needed some time to think.

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