We chat with French Montana about his latest project, dream collaborations, being from Africa, and what’s to come from the Platnium-selling artist.

The Fifth and Final Chapter of the Epic Mac & Cheese Series featuring Lil Wayne, Kanye West, Lil Baby, Rick Ross, Westside Gunn & more is out now. The 3x Grammy-nominated, Diamond-certified recording artist, humanitarian, and entrepreneur French Montana unveils the fifth and final chapter of the iconic Mac & Cheese mixtape series with an all-star lineup.  

The new Mac & Cheese 5 follows his recent hit collaboration “Okay” featuring Lil Baby, which served as the project’s first offering and set the tone for the rest of the mixtape. With over a decade since the first Mac & Cheese was released, this latest 21-track effort sees Montana recruiting some of the top names in the industry to round out the series and what it has meant for the culture since its inception.   

Please read our full Interview with French Montana below.


Tell us about this new album and how it differs from the last.

This album is different from every other album because I have more experience. I have about 15 years of experience in making music. It’s almost like that guy who was painting a picture and charged somebody like $5 Million for it, and it only took him 15 minutes to paint the picture. The guy was like, why are you charging me $5 million to paint this picture when it only took you 15 minutes, and the guy was like it took me 40 years of my life to paint this picture in 15 minutes. That’s how I felt about this project, I did it from expieremce and love what I’m doing so it came together fast and I worked with everybody I wanted to work with.

You have some dope features on this record; which one came about first, and how do you pick your collaborations?

I pick my collaborations just based on my relationship with the person. Kanye West and I worked together for about a month; Lil Dirk and I have a history, and everybody on there I have History with, and that’s how I usually make my music; it comes from a great place; the consumer consumes it in the best space. That’s how I typically make music.

Any dream future collaborations?

The only future dream collaboration is with Max B when he gets home from Jail. That’s my partner, and I feel we can make some magic together.

Where did the name Mac and Cheese stem from for this album? 

Mac with the Cheese is something that Max B gave me; he gave me the name for the mixtape. I was going to call it steak sauce, but Max B gave me the name Mac with the Cheese. The music was soul food, everything was soul food, and without Mac and Cheese, you can’t have soul food; you can’t have that thing that hits your soul. That’s what it is, S/O to Max B…Free him!

How are you as a North African rapper disrupting the culture? 

I feel like being from Africa and living there until I was 13 and immigrating to the States and dealing with the culture shock; I cannot speak English and bring my whole culture over here. I feel like it’s a beautiful thing, especially with my documentary coming out this summer, which my brother produced. I feel like being African has just shaped and molded my career because I view music the same; I was listening to music before I even knew what anybody was saying, so when I make it now, I make it from the global kids that are worldwide that don’t understand English either so I’m happy that I came from Africa and that I was able to contribute to the game and come to the south bronx and meet all the fathers of Hip-hop.

You are the most streamed African-born artist; what does this accomplishment feel like for the culture?

Being the most African streamed artist is beautiful because it’s not just Morroco; it’s a continent, and I put in a lot of work, and it’s lovely to see how my work has paid off. At the end of the day, when I told everyone in Morroco that I wanted to be an artist and a rapper and go to the States, everybody looked at me like I had 3-eyes like I was crazy and beyond dreaming. I would tell people in broad daylight that this is what I want to do; I didn’t have a dream about it. It seemed like it was delusional until it became a reality; from that point until now, I feel like when I first started rapping, it was a joke because I picked the most challenging job to do, and I didn’t even speak English yet. I was dreaming that somebody else would know my song, which is living down the street. I never dreamed that I would have platinum-selling albums and diamond records. It’s a beautiful thing, man.

You directed a movie about your mom for Tribeca Film Fest last year. Can we expect more directing in the future?

Yes, there will be a lot more! I started with Cocaine City DVDs, and I believe that films are just as important as music to me, so there will be a lot.

Who are your hip-hop Heroes?

My Hip-hop heroes are Rick Ross, 2 Pac, Biggie, Max B, Chinx, Jay Z, Nas, and so on.

What is your favorite fragrance to wear on a date?

My favorite fragrance to wear on a date is Baccarat.

What advice would you give your 18-year-old self?

Be patient. Everything that comes goes. Get closer to Allah, closer to the higher power, and treat people like you won’t ever see them again. The most important thing is to don’t stop. Even when you don’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, don’t stop. Keep working as long as you know you’re working towards the right thing.

What is your life motto?

My Life Motto is to don’t depend on anybody. If you want something done, do it yourself.

What is next for you in 2024?

Dropping my Documentary and working on another album.


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