Moe has been balling before signing his record deal with Epic Records. Many of the Orlando-born hooper turned rapper’s fans came after his breakout hit “Outta Here.” The Tik-Tok-friendly banger is one of the most popular records on NBA 2K20’s soundtrack. Moreover, his buzz coincidentally came from something that represents his first love. Basketball is something that Moe cannot escape. His friendship with NBA Slam Dunk Champion Aaron Gordon has reaped benefits on both sides. The natural athletic connection blends well with their mutual love for music. The two met through a mutual Orlando mainstay and Grammy-winning producer, Ayo (1/2 of Ayo N Keyz).
The Florida-bred rapper has come a long way from his college basketball days. Today, the Epic Records signee has a new project with legendary producer, Zaytoven. The 8-track tape features impressive features from Hotboii, Young Scooter, and Mula McGrady. The story of how the tape came together is awesome. Luckily, we were able to hop on Zoom with the talented artist and learn more about MOETOVEN. Check out the new interview below!
Ahmad: First things first, please introduce yourself to those who do not know who Moe is?
Moe: Moe, born and raised in Orlando, Florida. I’m a rapper signed to Epic Records. I’m a big fan of music itself, but I also played college ball at Virginia Union in Richmond, VA. My family is all musicians, and all my best friends like Ayo & Chandler are also. Growing up with musicians who play in the church has all been a big part of my growth as an artist.
AD: Speaking of Ayo, another musician who is big in Orlando, can you talk the artists there and more about what that scene means to you?
Moe: You have Ayo (1/2 of the Grammy-winning duo Ayo N Keyz); of course, Dj Nasty is always with DJ Khaled. You have young artists like Hotboii, LBP Poody, and Tyla Yaweh, all from Orlando. You rarely see creatives from the same city work together. I am happy Hotboii, and I have a track together that is going to do well.
AD: How excited are you about the new record with your fellow hometown rapper, Hotboii?
Moe: Of course, you cannot choose what a hit is but this one has potential. It is just so dope to have a song with someone from my city. It’s on a Zaytoven beat, so it’s extraordinary.
AD: Your record “Outta There” was on NBA 2K and went viral on Tik Tok also. How did that feel when it happened?
Moe: Man, that was crazy to me. At the time, it was blowing up on Tik Tok. I didn’t even know what the app was. I was just so thankful that it was blowing up so crazy.
AD: Speaking of 2K, it’s well documented that you are good friends with Aaron Gordon. Can you talk to us about how that relationship came together?
Moe: Yeah, that is the homie! I was in the studio with my boy Ayo and AG had hit him up asking where he was. He told him to pull up, and coincidentally he showed up when I was finishing my last verse to “Outta There.” From there, we linked and haven’t stopped hanging out since. We have traveled together, done music, and everything, man. The connection we had with basketball made it easy to bond.
AD: So you mentioned that you went to an HBCU, do you think your time at VUU inspired you to add some members of Omega Psi Phi in your “Big Dog” video?
Moe: Without a doubt! If I never went to Union, I would have never known much about the black fraternity culture. Having them in my “Big Dog” video was dope and an enjoyable experience. Many people feel like I am mysterious, but if they pay attention to the music, they can learn a lot about me. There’s nothing like an HBCU. I would compare it to growing up in a small country town. It is so tight-knit, and everyone knows each other and supports each other.
AD: Did you finish up at Virginia Union and get your degree?
Moe: Hell Nah, I went ahead and got outta thereafter. I started rapping. Hopefully, they book me for a homecoming performance soon. I’m trying to work it out sometime this Fall.
AD: You are one of the few people to perform at an NBA arena. How was that experience performing at Amway Arena?
Moe: That was crazy. Most definitely one of the things that were on my bucket list. It was during the halftime of a Chris Johnson x Floyd Mayweather All-star game. There were over 10,000 people there, and many of them knew the song. “Outta There” was big at the time, so it was truly a dream to do that in my hometown for sure.
AD: You rap about the restaurant Krest on your latest project with Zaytoven. If you had dinner and could only invite 5 people whose work you enjoy(DOA) who would inspire you who would those people be?
Moe: Andre 300 because he taught me how to be myself. Drake because I caught him so early on in his career. Jay-Z because his delivery is top-tier. No one can deliver verses like him. I would say Pac based on his work ethic alone. The things he was saying then are still relevant today. Lastly, I would say Rick Ross. He put on for Florida in a big way; He showed the world we have lyricists, and also his business acumen is great.
AD: So how did you and the legendary producer Zaytoven decide to do a full project together?
Moe: My homie Dave introduced me to Zaytoven. He was loading up beats the first night, and I cut like 4 records. Once he saw how fast I worked, he thought we should do a project together. We got Zula McGrady on there, Hotboii, and Young Scooter. I am excited about it for sure.
AD: That’s exciting man. You have a lot coming this year can you let us know your plans for the year?
Moe: I cannot wait to work with some of the influences I mentioned earlier. I want to work with some of my Epic label mates also. Music is so collaborative I think it is exciting to see what happens. I have so much music loaded up, so I will give it all to the fans soon. I want them to make sure that when it drops, they run it up for me!
Be sure to follow the baller turned artists on social media @moeisbetter and peep his new project MOETOVEN below!