• Gov't Name: Kristopher Campbell
  • Twitter: @KCamp427
  • Instagram: @KCamp427
  • Age: 25
  • Reppin: Atlanta
  • Notable Releases: Singles: “Money Baby,” "Cut Her Off," “Blessing,” "Turn Up For a Check," “Lil Bit”; Mixtapes: One Way; EPs: In Due Time; Guest Appearances: Snootie Wild’s “Made Me”
  • Label: FTE/Interscope
  • Currently Working On: As-yet-titled debut album due out late July
  • Surprised About Who Is Missing: “I thought Snootie Wild was going to be here. I thought PartyNextDoor was going to be on here, too.”
  • Influenced By: “When I go in the booth I think to myself, don’t make any mediocre stuff. The first thing I think of is hit. Don’t put out any bullshit. I’m going for the home run every time.”
  • As A Freshman In High School: “I was that goofy nigga on the basketball team. I was single until about the 11th grade, then I was pimpin’. I didn’t want a girlfriend; I went to prom by myself. I was cooling, I wasn’t doing no damn work. Just chilling with my people making music.”

TRUTH: On Being A 2015 XXL Freshman: “It’s a crazy feeling growing up and watching the covers for years and years just looking at them and telling yourself you’re going to be on one of those covers. Now I’m on one of them covers years later. It’s crazy. I already know it’s only up from here.

I got the call from the manager. I think I was smoking a good blunt and playing music at the time and my manager called and said, 'Hey, you made the cover.' Inside [I] was like, ‘Yeah, let’s get it.’ We’re in the process of dropping my debut album and the hype that’s going to come off making the cover is going to make it even better. It’s going to build it up.

We got a little catalogue—'Slum Anthem,' 'Blessing'—the catalogue is crazy. We’re in a good space right now. So we’re going to keep dropping and keep pushing. I want to take over the game. I want folks to really open their eyes and realize who the hell K Camp is. There isn’t a gimmick. There isn’t no one-hit wonder, this the real deal. When I hear 'freshman,' I hear you the new kid on the block. Everybody pays attention; you’re the new student at the school and everybody asking who is this nigga and what he 'bout to do, what he doing. That’s how I feel about the Freshman cover. I don’t feel any pressure.

[Fans] said I should have made it last year. I had hit songs on Billboard and I wasn’t even on the cover. I’m just going to keep on doing me. It’s perfect timing. Everything happens for a reason, but I think it’s perfect. It came along at the right time. Everything is in motion and where it needs to be. All the pieces are lining up and this cover is going to stamp the year. The cover wasn’t a goal, but I always wanted to be on one. Just make it. I was like, If I was on that shit, it'd be dope as fuck. The first [Freshman cover] that I started tuning in [was] Wale and J. Cole’s class. That was a classic one. I want the whole cover of XXL. It’s coming soon.

My legacy is important. I work hard to build this brand and stamp myself and keep my name clean in these streets. My face card is good. It has to be A1, it’s important. This shit lives on forever. When I’m gone I want people to say K Camp was that guy. Pressure fuels me. It makes me go hard. I’m not trying to be anyone other than K Camp. So when the next cover out they will say, 'That’s the next K Camp.' I got a lot to prove. I came out the gate with banger after banger and folks still sleep. But I look at it like, they're going to sleep on the greats. Look at J. Cole; everybody slept on J. Cole for years and J. Cole been a monster. His album just went platinum. Everybody slept on the great niggas.

When people sleep on me, I just look at it like, ‘Aight, I just keep doing me.' I’m only getting better. They’re going to wake up eventually, when they hear this album. Me being from Atlanta, what Atlanta niggas know is that ratchet club shit. I can make that ratchet club shit easy, that’s just my environment. But when it comes down to really making the music and sitting down and writing lyrics, going in on production, just growing with the music, I can do both sides. I’m playing chess right now. I knew this shit was going to happen years ago, so I’m moving how I need to move. I do me. I don’t worry about no other nigga campaign, that’s something I’ve been doing.

Soon as you tune in to somebody’s other shit, that’s when you’re off track. I do K Camp and that’s how I stand out in Atlanta. Of course you’re going to get critics and haters. That comes with the game. You just got to take that, run with it, build yourself and shit on niggas. Every time someone doubts you, you got to shit on them. People think I’m just on the club shit. I’m good with the club shit, but every time they doubt me I shit on them again. Every time they say he ain’t got no more, I do about three more. I love that shit. I thrive off it.” —Emmanuel Maduakolam

Behind-The-Scenes: K Camp