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For their Fall 2016 issue, XXL has tapped the newly-free Gucci Mane and fellow Atlanta hip-hop artist Young Thug to grace the cover. In leading up to the official release, the publication has delivered a new video interview with one of the cover stars, Guwop.

The chat finds Gucci speaking on his now much talked-about previous struggle with drugs, making amends, the Atlanta hip-hop scene, and his protege, Thugger.

“I always used to tell Thug, ‘You signed to me, but at the end of the day, you the boss of Young Thug Entertainment. You Young Thug Records like I’m Gucci Records. I gotta manage me,” said Gucci Mane when speaking with XXL. “If somebody tell me to be somewhere, I gotta make sure I’m there. Can’t nobody make sure I’m there but me.’ I used to always preach that to them. Don’t think just because somebody may be the financier right now, things change. You might be on a way bigger level than me or whoever behind you, but you got to handle yourself like you a business, like you a brand, so that everybody that meet you be like, ‘I want to do business with this guy. He talented, but at the same time, he understand what’s going on.’”

As previously mentioned, Gucci’s recent stint in prison in many ways helped him to quit his insatiable drug habit.

“If you would’ve told me before I went to jail that I could stop drinking lean and smoking weed…I knew people could do that and I had heard stories of that, but I never wanted to do that. I never ever wanted to not be high. I enjoyed doing it so much so…but I was thinking about putting my plan together, after, like, a year of being away from drugs, it became part of my plan.”

He went on to add, “The way I’m handling business now and the way I think now is way more sharper than how I was before. Maybe if I don’t do that, that’ll keep me from keep going back and forth to jail. I just kept building on that and making that a part of my life. Once I embraced that, it just made me treat everything different. And I think that’s why I’m getting better results now ’cause my whole approach is just different.”

For Guwop’s entire sit-down with XXL, press play above. Also, be on the lookout for the new fall issue to hit newsstands on October 18.

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