In an interview with Complex Mac Miller talks about a night that he had to spend in jail earlier this year. This is the first time that he’s talked about the altercation, check out this crazy story.
This week, Mac Miller dropped his debut album, Blue Slide Park. We hear the album is on pace to sell over 100,000 copies in its first week, which is a major accomplishment for an independent artist. After also gracing the cover of Billboard this week, the 19-year-old Pittsburgh rapper is obviously blowing up.
None of this should come as a surprise. Mac has spent the last few years slowly but surely cultivating a fanbase. He’s got over a million followers on Twitter and Facebook, he’s racked up millions of views on Youtube, and he sells out shows across the nation.
But with fame and a hectic tour schedule, life can get pretty complicated. Mac found out just how complicated earlier this year—when he was arrested in upstate New York after partying a little too hard in his hotel room.
Amazingly, the story went unreported and only a few knew about the incident. That is, until we caught up with the Most Dope General and got him to spill the beans and tell the story of the worst night of his tour so far… The good news? Mac’s got fans in jail too.
Interview by Insanul Ahmed (@Incilin)
You’ve been touring a lot, and we all know on tours there’s a lot of partying going on. What is the key to a good party?
The key for me is making sure that there is always a clean exit if some shit goes down.
Have you been in tight situations at parties?
There’s definitely been situations where it’s like, this is going to go down. And I can’t go down. I’m on tour, I can’t fucking go to jail…
more after the jump
Right because you have way more to lose than—
—a random person at a party. To me, maybe that’s one of the reasons I don’t like going out much because unless it’s at a club. It’s better [to party at a club] because you’re not going to get arrested at a club for drinking at a table. But like the crazy, random shit, I feel like you just never really know.
I always want to make sure that if some shit goes down, I’ll be cool. I’m not doing anything too serious, I’m not walking around with a fucking bag of coke, or some stupid shit like that. For me a good party is just a bunch of people who don’t give a fuck who else is there.
This is what parties would be like in Pittsburgh: A room full of people with dudes just standing there, just grilling each other. You’d go to clubs and it would be people buying bottles not because they want bottles to drink, but because they want to like stunt on this neighborhood that they have these bottles and the other people don’t.
I think the key to a good party and a good time in general is to stop thinking, just fucking live, go and get drunk and have fun.
Have you ever been in tight situations with cops?
Jimmy Murton [Mac’s close friend]: Man, we have run from the cops hundreds of times.
As a kid we ran from the cops and done like all types of [stuff]. There’s this one time [like four or five years ago] when we were drinking at the golf course at night. It was a bunch of people drinking 40s. This cop drives by, we’re like, “It’s cool he didn’t see us, keep drinking.” All of the sudden, fucking three cop cars drive up on every side of the golf course, with motorcycles and cops on foot and they’re just ambushing.
We would run this way and the cops would be like “Get the fuck on the ground!” with a Taser pointed in my face. So we turned around and run the other way. Cop comes around that way, and we’re like, “Fuck fuck fuck!”
So then what happened?
There was this fenced-in area and we turn into survival mode. I’ve never climbed a fence so fast in my life. This fence was seriously like 12 feet tall and the top of the fence extended above the bar, So, the chain link fence just went a little higher than the top bar.
It’s like heavily wooded in this fenced-in area for some reason. It’s a fenced-in area with trees everywhere. So we jump over the fence and jump into some bushes. We’re just laying there motionless. The cops open up the fence, come in with dogs and flashlights, and we are laying there like, “We are fucked dude, we are so fucked.”
The cops are walking around shining these flashlights, go right over us and shit. All the sudden we hear one of the cops, and he’s like “Wait. I see them.” And we’re like, “Aw fuck, here we go.” But in our heads we’re like “I’m not moving until this man comes up and grabs me.” Like, “Maybe he sees a toad and that’s what he’s talking about.”
Did you end up getting arrested?
What ends up happening is four other dudes were hiding in there too, and the cops saw the other four people and missed us. So the cops grab those four and leave and they didn’t get us.
We sat there motionless for two hours—no words, trying not to breathe too loudly, not moving because any movement would like move a stick or something. We basically sat and listened to like 20 of our homies get citations and all that shit. It’s always been, when cops come, turn into survival mode and fuck everybody else. We’re getting out of here.
The thing is always, I’ve always been the youngest dude. I’m 19 now. My other homies are like 21, so it’s always been like, “Yo we need to get Mac out because Mac is like the young dude.”
This one time when we were in sixth grade, we were smoking cigars, rolling up weed behind some dude’s garage. We’re sitting there smoking and all the sudden we hear, “Hey!” and they dip, and I’m young as hell so I just freeze up.
This old dude, grandpa type, grabs my shirt and just holds on to me. And I’m like, “Fuck!” [My friends are] gone and this old dude has me in a citizens arrest. He calls the cops, the cops came and didn’t do anything. I was in sixth they were just like, “I can’t believe you are smoking weed.” So we’ve always had situations where we have to dip from the cops, and we’ve always come out on top—most of the time.
Most of the time? You ever get caught for real?
What happened? Why did you get arrested?
We were just partying in hotels with a lot of weed and alcohol. We were drinking and smoking and [my friend Jimmy] had just fallen asleep. I decided I was leaving. I was like, “I’m done with this shit.” I opened up the door like, “Alright, I’m out y’all.” And right as I turn around, the cop pushes me back into the room and he says, “You’re not going anywhere.” And I’m like, “You gotta be fucking kidding me.” And so I’m like, “Alright we’ll be good,” and they just fucking cuffed us.
Because you had all the weed laying out?
Jimmy Murton: Just weed and alcohol—not all types of drugs. It was like this except there’s like fucking big jars of weed and just open bottles laying everywhere and shit.
How long ago was that?
That was February. And that’s what I’m saying, the case was pending— I just didn’t want that shit to like, become something.
If you were upstate did you just do like a college show?
We had just played at a random club. [I don’t remember the actual venue].
Well, we had to spend one night in jail. When you are touring that’s the other thing to be conscious about, some places don’t have tolerance for that. Like you get caught in Cali with weed they are gonna be okay.
But if you get caught in fucking random ass, Chautauqua, New York—or wherever the fuck we were [in upstate N.Y.] they don’t have tolerance for that shit. So yeah we fucking had to spend a night a jail and that shit sucked.
What was it like?
It was funny as hell, the experience. We were in the holding cell, chilling there, and this dude gets brought into the holding cell. He’s in there cuffed up and we are sitting in there laughing and cutting up trying to make the best of the situation.
This kid gets brought in and his head is down. And we are like, “Alright, now more people are coming into the holding cell, fuck.” This dude comes in, his head is down, they unhook him and I swear to God he looks up and is like, “Holy Shit! I’m in a cell with Mac Miller! Yo this is nuts! This is tight, yo! Ah man, what are you doing here yo?” I was like, this is just too ridiculous.
On top of that I had just gotten paid from the show, in cash, so I had like $10,000 in cash in my pocket at the time of the arrest, in the holding cell. They pull out this $10,000 in cash and they are like, “What do you do for a living? You just got caught with a fuckin’ jar of weed and $10,000 cash. You are a drug dealer.” I was like, “No—I’m a rapper! I just got paid for a performance.” I can’t believe they believed me when I said that. They looked me up on YouTube.
That [night] was fucking horrible. It was so freezing fuckin’ cold in that cell, I couldn’t sleep. I couldn’t figure out how to flush the toilet, so my cell smelled like straight piss in the morning. In the morning, we all got new cell mates, just random people. Some old crackhead [became my new cellmate] and he came in and flushed the toilet and I was like, “How do you do that, yo?”
What happened in the morning?
It was funny because we all had our own separate cells. So I’m like, this is tight man. Well, not tight, but at least we aren’t with some crazy motherfuckers who are about to do some fuck shit, no pun intended.
But I wake up and they bring all these dudes in, and there’s some hood-ass dudes. They start pouring into all these cells… We start getting cell mates and shit. These dudes come in and start clowning us but then they they found out I was a rapper because the guard came in and was like, “You know who that is? That’s Mac Miller.”
They were like, “I don’t know who that is. I’ve been in jail for seven years.” But later on, they were like, “Man, we’ve been in a cell together yo, man when I get out man…” And I’m like, “Hit me on Twitter bro.” And they were like, “We don’t got Twitter. I’ve been in jail for seven years. What the fuck is Twitter?”
What happened when you got sentenced?
After we got out, they like brought us in the courtroom to get our sentencing in shackles in front of everyone. Luckily I had all that cash so I paid everybody’s bail. We all dipped out and we were good.
But after that I was like, from now on [we gotta be more careful]. We were reckless before that. Like we didn’t give a fuck, we were smoking every place, [getting] drunk, screaming—we didn’t care.
This is the first time I’ve ever talked about it, but we are lucky that shit didn’t get out while the case was still going on and shit. Luckily I got out in time to make it to my next show in Canada.
You went to Canada the next day?
That’s the other shit, because we get to the border, and fresh out of jail to the border where if you just went to jail you are not getting across the border—period. And I was like, “How are we going to get across the border bro? They are going to look us up and they are going to be like, ‘So you were in jail last night? Go turn around.’”
So we get there and we are like, let’s wing it and just try. And we get there and they go, “So, did you guys get in trouble last night? Were you guys drinking or something? We got something from the radio that some people were…”
We were like, “No, I don’t know what you are talking about.” They let us through, luckily. I guess I don’t know what happened, maybe they just heard about it through the radio but didn’t get names processed or something—but we were lucky. But after that shit I was like this is a straight-up business. You gotta be smart.
Did that case get dropped or settled?
We just settled it because at the end of the day it was stupid. Like I said, a lot of places we would have not even had to go to jail. But because we were [in upstate New York] they were super old-fashioned.
That’s a crazy story. So, you got through the border, no problem?
Got through the border and didn’t have any trouble. The first time I tried to get through the border I actually lied to the people and they almost didn’t let me in. Because they were like, “Have you ever been arrested?” And this is before all this shit.
I was like, “Nope—never.” But it was a written arrest but it was like expunged—but I guess when you cross the border they can see everything, so they were like, “You just lied to a federal officer.” So after that shit I was like, I can’t be about to lie to a federal officer again.
So what have you changed since that experience?
I think it’s just kinda do everything smart. When you have weed, don’t roll around with big bags of weed. If we smoke, we just roll everything up to the point where it’s obvious that we are smoking and not distributing.
Always being cautious to everything from checking IDs to people that are there, to like talking to the hotel people before and being like, “Yo if there is a problem just call us and don’t call the cops and we’ll handle it.” And just being grown about it and treating situations and not being an idiot. We try to party at clubs and shit if people go out. The room is more for the after party.