Your shoes and hands just may get a little dirty when building a brand straight from the mud. The task of transforming a fledging local record label into a million-dollar hit factory may seem too tough. Taking the scraps that life has thrown you and turning crumbs into bricks just may be too big of a burden to bear. But the fruits of dedication, persistence and hard work do pay off in the end.
A prime example of that payoff is Ft. Lauderdale-based emerging music powerhouse Fetti Records. Reaping the rewards of laying their foundation from the slums of their native South Florida with a catalog of hits from flagship artist A.M.P. Fetti, the music conglomerate has set been setting fire to the game for the past five summers. Now after burning up the blocks with the Fetti Millionaires, label CEO Rich Fetti comes to officially make his presence known.
He is currently featured on two piping hot A.M.P. Fetti singles “Million Dollar Phone” and “Can’t Help It,” Rich is set to drop two solo EPs this year along with an upcoming EP with vocals recorded totally in Haitian Creole. With forthcoming releases from A.M.P. Fetti in coming months and a joint project from A.M.P. and Rich called Paper Chase 2 featuring Rick Ross and YNW Melly, the Fetti Millionaires don’t intend on letting up any time soon.
“We can’t help it. We’re looking good. We’re smelling good. The money’s here. Everything is connecting right now,” says Rich Fetti. “It’s one of those fairy tale stories of guys coming from the streets and working real hard. It’s not like we just came up overnight. Nah…we been doing this for years, grinding, putting in work. Now we’re here and making noise.”
While the gold and diamonds on his watches, rings and chains may shine hard enough to blind you, nothing has come easy for Rich Fetti. He earned every penny the hard way.
Born in Rocky Mountain, NC to Haitian immigrant parents who left their homeland during the 1980s in search of a better life. His mom and dad initially lived in South Florida upon relocating to the US but relocated to North Carolina to work on a tobacco plantation. The couple and their children eventually found their way back to Miami before their baby boy Rich was hardly old enough to walk.
Raised in Broward County In a predominately Haitian neighborhood “East Side” in Ft Lauderdale, Florida, Rich grew up dirt poor. He knew his parents couldn’t afford to buy him the things that he wanted, so “I stopped asking my parents for money real young,” he recalls. “I can’t remember a year of living where I had time to sit back and not hustle.”
As early as elementary school, Rich and his older brother worked for $5 a week at their uncle’s store just so they could save up to buy a pair of name brand shoes. “We would only get one pair between the both of us to share,” he admits. “I wore a size six, and he wore a size eight, so we would get a size seven and take turns wearing them.”
By the time he was in middle school, they were introduced to a man who sold candy to kids during basketball season. He saw that the kids were go-getters, so he hired them to sell candy. Natural businessmen, the boys excelled at the job.
“I was 12 years old bringing in sometimes $50-$100 a day,” says Rich. “I was making more money than my momma.”
Just as much as he loved making money, he also loved making music. Since his family was deeply involved in the Baptist church, his first appreciation for music was gospel. As a youngster, he sang in the choir and was also a member of a gospel singing group called the Sounds of Soul.
“I’ve been into music all my life, and I like all kinds of music,” says Rich. “That’s why when you hear my music now, you may hear some gospel. You may hear a little bit of country because we’re in the south, but it’s all gangsta music. It’s melodic, rapping, singing. I do whatever the beat tells me to do. If the beat tells me to sing, I sing. If the beat tells me to rap, I rap.”
His musical aspirations had to be put to the side, however, when Rich reached his teens. He got pulled into the streets and jammed up on drug charges at age 15.
“While everybody was going to school and graduating, I was going to prison,” he details.
After paying his debt to society, he decided to apply the street hustle to the music hustle. He and business partner Streets launched Fetti Records and signed A.M.P. The first release was A.M.P.’s 2010 mixtape Dope Supply.
“It tore the streets up. It shook South Florida up,” he thinks back. “At the time, we didn’t have no rappers out that were actually good, so when we released AMP, everybody was into our music.”
Five more mixtapes and a slew of singles from A.M.P followed. Although Rich held down the management and various roles behind the scenes, he would make frequent guest appearances on A.M.P. releases. But now, it’s time for him to claim his share of the spotlight.
He is currently featured on two piping hot A.M.P. Fetti singles “Million Dollar Phone” and “Can’t Help It.” He is set to drop two solo EPs this year, an EP with vocals recorded totally in Haitian Creole and a joint project with A.M.P. called Paper Chase 2 featuring Rick Ross and YNW Melly, Rich Fetti is coming full speed ahead.
“Our music is not in a box,” he explains. “We can do whatever we want to do with the music because we are so comfortable with ourselves and who we are. We can do a female record or a gospel record or a love copa record and still get real gangsta with that soul to it. The music touches you.”