Waka Flocka Flame has gotten a lot of flack over the name of his debut album, Flockaveli, but he says he’s heavily influenced by the writings of Italian philosopher Niccolò Machiavelli, who Tupac named himself after in homage with the moniker Makaveli before his first posthumous album was released.
The Atlanta rapper told MTV recently that he shares Machiavelli’s tactics, which were famously chronicled in his book The Art of War.
“Tupac introduced me to the [writing] of Machiavelli,” Waka told MTV. “That’s why I made that. I can’t just, ‘Oh, Tupac did that, so I’m gonna do that too.’ If people read, they would love that man. That man is a mind-game genius. I read the Machiavelli war-tactic books, his biography, everything.
“That man is just like sticks and stones, bad,” he continued. “You see Waka Flocka, what do you think? Negativity. You read Machiavelli? Negativity. My brain, I’m so sharp, I can play stupid on the camera and they think I’m dumb. So really. you just playing yourself. I’m so ahead of y’all. That’s for the bloggers.”
Perhaps that’s what led the Southern lyricist to lash out at BET executive Stephen Hill over the weekend. Waka performed at the 2010 BET Hip-Hop Awards taping and drew Hill’s ire for reportedly leaving the event early. The two exchanged Twitter barbs but eventually reconciled.
“I wasn’t even upset, honestly,” Waka told MTV News about his early departure from the taping. “My label had some stuff set up for me to leave and do some stuff for my album. So I guess by me leaving, everybody was like, ‘Oh, he mad.’ But I just dipped. I ain’t know what was going on.”
Flockaveli hit stores on Tuesday (October 5), via Gucci Mane’s 1017 Brick Squad Records.