Tony Hussle: On the Grind

Tony Hussle is hoping the sexiest, freakiest thing you want to do is buy his debut album – Sexy Freaky, Electric. As the album title suggests, Hussle’s music is a blend of old school Funk, new school sex appeal and the electricity of Rock n’ Roll. With song like “She’s A Virgin, Too” and “Your […]

Tony Hussle is hoping the sexiest, freakiest thing you want to do is buy his debut album – Sexy Freaky, Electric. As the album title suggests, Hussle’s music is a blend of old school Funk, new school sex appeal and the electricity of Rock n’ Roll. With song like “She’s A Virgin, Too” and “Your Girl” – which is about stealing another man’s woman – Hussle may give off the appearance of being a sex-crazed Rock star looking to bag as many chicks as possible.

However, intertwined between the sex-heavy joints are some songs about building relationships [“Wait”] and grinding to get a deal [“I Sell Music”]. Basically, whatever you expect to hear from this guy, you really cannot expect. The fact that he will talk about anything in his music keeps people talking about what’s next for this musician, singer and songwriter.

Not only is music in this man’s genes, but it’s also in the water: Hussle hails from Plainfield, New Jersey, where the super-group Parliament Funkadelic was formed and his uncle was the front man. As Hussle closes out a promotional tour with Floetry, he talks with Alternatives about his vast influences and his preferences…sexual and otherwise. Alternatives: So, you come across a lot of virgins?

Tony Hussle: In my life I have. I felt it was time to write about the overall thing. I have a daughter. I don’t want it to seem like all my s### is real sexual. So I had to break it down. Some girls look sexy and look hot and are virgins at 22- and 23-years-old. A lot of cats are like, ‘Yo, I want to f*ck that b*tch tonight’ but they ain’t because she don’t get down like that. Just because a girl looks good it doesn’t mean she gets down like a stripper, that why I wrote “She’s A Virgin”. I’ve bumped into a lot of really pretty females. That’s why I wrote “Wait”. Have you heard that song?

AHHA: Not yet, but I hear there’s a lot of buzz around it.

Tony Hussle: That song is about girls putting stipulations on men. I’m quite sure you’ve had a little boyfriend and made him wait eight or nine months or a year…

AHHA: Well…

Tony Hussle: Well there are time limits on it, right? I just want my album to show from my childhood to adulthood. Some of the stuff on the album happened when I was an adult. Some of it happened was a kid. And when I thought about a lot of sh*t and hear people talked, it was mad crazy. I just knew I had to talk about this stuff and talk about it so that a baby can understand it.

AHHA: Can you describe the songs on your album and how they relate to your childhood and adulthood?

Tony Hussle: My mom starts off telling everybody that I’ve been playing piano since I was like two and a half-years-old. I played for a children’s choir and we went on tour with a lot of great Gospel groups, like the Mighty Clouds of Joy, the Blind Boys [of Alabama], Shirley Caesar. So I have songs about that. Then it goes into “Giving You This Number”, a song about talking to this girl. It’s good. I’m the version of what Hip-Hop is. Hip-Hop is a culture and everyone is influenced by it. The culture was very influential to me making Sexy, Freaky, Electric the way it was.

AHHA: Are you more influenced by Hip-Hop or R&B music?

Tony Hussle: I’m just inspired by the feeling. Anything that’s hot, whether it’s Gospel, Jazz or whatever. People who have the passion.

AHHA: If you had to compare yourself to a rapper, who would you be?

Tony Hussle: Ludacris, because every time you hear him, he’s not scared of a challenge. He always comes different and fresh every time; he’s making a good impression every time. I think he’s one of the most talented rappers in the game because he’s really rapping, he’s really Hip-Hop. He’s not too much shoot ‘em up. He’s got good punch lines and good music. Like him, I try to have fun with my s###.

AHHA: Where did you get the name Tony Hussle?

Tony Hussle: My name is Tony. But I used to wait outside of Def Jam everyday, and one of my friends used to tell me I was a hustling. My boys started calling me Tony Hussle, so I just kept it. I ain’t Tony Sit-Down or Tony Over There, I’m Tony Hussle, I hustle, I have a passion about my sh*t.

AHHA: What instruments do you prefer to play?

Tony Hussle: It depends on what I’m feeling. I’m a natural born pianist. I’ll play the piano and play your draws off, that’s what I do. I play bass guitar, I play guitar, and I play drums, that’s what I do.

AHHA: In your songs you’re very descriptive of the female body, what’s your favorite body part on a woman?

Tony Hussle: The legs. I like a female with nice, thick legs. The song says like cold grits. That’s what I like, that doesn’t mean that’s what I’ll actually accept.

AHHA: Okay, I’m going to give you two words and you tell me which one you like the best and why. Parliament or Funkadelic?

Tony Hussle: Funkadelic, because they’re the funk part of Parliament.

AHHA: Biggie or Tupac?

Tony Hussle: Pac, because he told me when I go to Oakland to let everybody know that he loves me.

AHHA: Singing or songwriting?

Tony Hussle: Songwriting, because you get the money from songwriting. You either gonna be Jim Henson or Kermit. A lot of people are Kermit, but I want to be Jim Henson and Kermit at the same time.

AHHA: Gospel or secular?

Tony Hussle: Gospel, because that’s where you get the feeling from. When I was 12 I had the Holy Ghost, so I know those feelings are real. With my music I get that same type of feeling.

AHHA: Prince now or Purple Rain-Prince?

Tony Hussle: Prince now, because Purple Rain helped him t grow into who he is right now. With a lot of people, you don’t get to see success after success. Prince is an example of that.

AHHA: Love, sex or music?

Tony Hussle: I think they’re all the same. Because sex is love and sex is music. That’s why I named my album Sexy, Freaky, Electric.