In a new interview with VIBE, André 3000 discussed his much talked about role as Jimi Hendrix. During the exchange, the OutKast star reflected on what changed his style then proceeded to send a warning to the kids out there: Drugs are no good. Please relay that message after you check out the following excerpts.
When OutKast first came onto the scene you were rocking pretty traditional “hip-hop clothes” of the time period. Do you remember when you really made the decision to go left from what rappers were wearing?
Yeah, the year after our first album (Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik) came out, and I started to produce once I got money to buy my own beat machines and equipment. Our first album was completely produced by Organized Noize. On our second album I started to put in production and I started to look at album covers in a different way. I was a fan of bands like Parliament Funkadelic, Prince, Hendrix, and other older groups. They became my style icons at that age. So I just started trying to incorporate different things into my wardrobe. I felt comfortable doing it. I actually made a huge turnaround after our first album, and I became a vegan/vegetarian at 22-23. I’d gone so hard the years before that I had to do something.
I remember you saying that you quit smoking weed and drinking around that time.
At the same time cause I actually looked in the mirror and saw myself deteriorating.
Wow at such a young age, too.
I was like man we’re doing too much. Way too much.
It’ll really be an eye opener for a lot of young hip-hop fans when they read this.
Oh, and another thing I really want to get out. We just finished the Hendrix movie. In my research there’s an interview and Hendrix says ‘I used to think that I was made for acid,’ he said, ‘Now, I know that I was not and that I’ve done way too much acid.’
Wow and that was after he had become a star?
Yeah, this was like towards the end of his career but he knew it. I think a lot of kids look at Hendrix as ‘He’s the drug guy.’ Kids need to know this.
How was that whole experience of just getting into the Jimi Hendrix character?
I camped down in California. I didn’t speak to my friends really cause I had to change my voice and my accent. I have a thick Southern drawl, so I had to listen hours of Hendrix interviews and had to lose a lot of weight. But it was a great experience, and I cannot wait until everybody sees it. I haven’t seen even seen a bit of it yet.