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Up Close With Flo Rida: "Right Round" MC on Strip Clubs and '80s Samples

March 11, 2009 4:33 PM ET

"I am the life of the party," Flo Rida recently told Rolling Stone when the rapper visited our offices to talk about his new album R.O.O.T.S.. Last year, Flo's chart-topping "Low" was battling Lil Wayne's "Lollipop" for the title of Best Rap Song of 2008. Three months into 2009, Flo Rida alone holds that distinction. "Right Round," with its sample of Dead Or Alive's "You Spin Me Round," has exploded onto the Hot 100 and every set of club speakers across the nation. "Being on my sophomore album, I did want to broaden my horizons," Flo says of branching out into '80s new wave for inspiration.

With samples playing such a big part in hip-hop these days, Flo Rida also breaks down some other artists whose use of an '80s' anthem scored them a "10," including Rihanna's "S.O.S." The rapper also talked Kid Rock's Skynyrd-and-Zevon interpolation "All Summer Long." "Kid Rock, I'm a big fan of him, got a chance to meet him during the Grammy weekend," Flo says. "I'm a fan of rock music." To prove his love of the rock, Flo rolled up his sleeve to show off his Jimi Hendrix tattoo. Is a rocking Rebirth in Flo's future?

In our exclusive video, Flo Rida also gives us a sneak preview of another R.O.O.T.S. single, "Jump," which Flo predicts will top the charts and soundtrack the upcoming NBA playoffs with its chorus "When I say jump, you say how high." How does he know the song will be a hit? The song, like the rest of the album, got the strippers' approval when he brought the album straight from the studio to the strip club. For much more from Flo Rida, check out the video above.

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Song Stories

“Santa Monica”

Everclear | 1996

After his brother and girlfriend both died of drug overdoses, Art Alexakis -- depressed and hooked on drugs himself -- jumped off the Santa Monica Pier in California, determined to die. "It was really stupid," said the Everclear frontman, who would further explore his personal emotional journey in the song "Father of Mine." "I went under the water. Then I said, 'I don't wanna die.'" The song, declaring "Let's swim out past the breakers/and watch the world die," was intended as a manifesto for change, Alexakis said. "Let the world do what it's gonna do and just live on our own."

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