When we first heard about Fitty Smallz, America's first fitness rapper, at first we were like "what?" And then we were like "oh yes." His deal is that he's quite literally a rapper who's all about staying fit. We chatted with him to find out more, and landed the honor of premiering his brand new video for the vampy "Thunda Thighs," which you can see after the Q&A.
What was your inspiration for combining the two fairly different worlds of music and fitness?
I’ve been in the fitness industry for 35 years and my entire adult life has been dedicated to helping people achieve their health and fitness goals. I’ve helped build some of the top fitness brands in the world and I’ve trained and mentored thousands of young people over the years. I’ve always had the desire to reach out beyond the four walls of a gym environment to inspire and motivate people.
About 10 years ago I authored a book and even with dozens of endorsements from best-selling authors, physicians and fitness professionals, plus a cover endorsement by Cindy Crawford, I only experienced moderate success. What I learned is that it’s really hard to reach people with written information. There’s just too much noise in the world and people are in constant information overload.
I realized that the two things that resonate with almost everyone are music and humor. I had a crazy idea to write and produce several music video parodies and without any marketing I had almost two million views on three videos I produced. That’s when I decided I wanted to write and produce original music. I found two young guys, Christopher Royden Myers and Ryan Viti of Mighty Music Group here in Jacksonville and that connection turned into gold. We just hit it off. They almost instantly understood what I was trying to do and we have collaborated on six original tracks and four major music videos to date. My mission is to “Inspire, motivate, empower, educate and entertain through music and humor,” and I bring a lot of crazy with each project.
A lot of entertainers are extremely physically fit, and have personal trainers at their beck and call, and yet in their music they seem to promote an overall lifestyle of excess. How do you think the everyday person who can’t afford a personal trainer can stay fit, yet still maintain some sort of rock star lifestyle?
First of all, I think the first thing people need to do is be happy in their own skin. Everywhere you look in the media you see unrealistic examples of how people are supposed to look and at the same time they get bombarded with mouth-watering temptations guaranteed to pack on the pounds.
Truth is, I don’t think the average person in America is thinking about a rock star lifestyle. Most people just want to feel good about themselves and they want to be inspired. That’s what my song "Muffin Top" was all about: body acceptance and empowerment. Start with accepting who you are and then focus on changing your lifestyle so you can achieve your goals over the long haul, not just try for a quick fix. It’s not even about the money. You don’t need an expensive gym or a personal trainer to get fit.
If you try to bounce a quarter off my ass, the damn quarter is gonna explode. My legs and ass aren’t just tight, they’re diamond hard with razor cuts.
What’s your advice for touring bands and artists on how to stay fit on the road amidst a sea of gas station junk food and drive through places?
There are two kinds of people in life: those who are looking for opportunities to do something to improve and those who are looking for opportunities to make excuses about why they can’t. I’ve traveled all over the world. Been to over 40 countries and lived out of a suitcase. You want to train; you’ll find a place to train. Sometimes that means getting down and doing some simple floor work.
I realize that might not be easy for someone who isn’t trained on what to do, but there are thousands of fitness professionals who post free fitness exercises on YouTube that you can do on the floor if you want to move your Gluteus Maximus. The rest is not falling into the trap of eating junk food and too many calories, especially liquid calories like beer and liquor. I always have protein bars with me and other healthy snacks when I travel. When I get hungry on the road, I pull out a bar and get 190 calories and 15 grams of protein. That’s all I care about.
An old expression for people who are very fit is to say that they can “bounce a quarter off of their ass.” Would you say that you could personally bounce loose change off of your own ass?
If you try to bounce a quarter off my ass, the damn quarter is gonna explode. My legs and ass aren’t just tight, they’re diamond hard with razor cuts. When I flex my quad, you’ll break a finger trying to grab the skin. Not even joking. That’s what Pilates does. I hit my Reformer and do footwork with dozens of progressions and hundreds of reps with light weight. My legs will be shaking and burning and I just keep going. That’s how I attack life in general. When you feel pain, just blast right through it.
What current popular band or artist would you love to “whip into shape?”
I’d love to get my hands on that beautiful superstar, Kelly Clarkson. People always say; “how can you gain weight when you have so much money?” That’s the dumbest thing I ever heard. Sometimes fame and success make it hard to be fit. Most people don’t know this, but I am also a fully certified Pilates instructor with 600 certification hours through Balanced Body and I STILL teach private and semi-private sessions to a few students. I love to work with women because most guys don’t even get what Pilates is and think it’s a joke. I’ll take any pro athlete, male or female and blow their minds in one session on a Reformer or Combo Chair. All of these beautiful female artists who struggle with their weight, I could turn their entire world around with Pilates. Give me a call Kelly and let’s make some beautiful Pilates together. LOL.
Did you happen to see the nude photos of Justin Bieber that leaked recently? What are some things he could do to firm his butt up?
Did you say, “leak?” Come on now. That’s what I mean, right there. If you want to get attention today, you have to be ready to expose yourself, if not physically, emotionally. Artists today are just looking for ways to get attention, and what better way than to bear your naked ass I guess. I get it. I admit that I walk the line and put out a lot of stuff that’s provocative because that’s what people are watching and what draws attention, but there’s a line I won’t cross. I have a couple of kids so if my kids can’t watch it, I won’t do it. All that said, I think the Biebs has an okay butt. He needs to harden that jello up some though. If he trained with me, he’d be freaking shredded.
Can you tell me a bit about the video for "Thunda Thighs" that we're premiering today?
One word. FREAKIN’ AMAZING! Okay, that’s two words. Whatever. LOL. It’s going to blow your mind. I had this crazy idea about doing a vampire boot camp theme and I think we nailed it. The co-stars are Dani Mathers, the 2015 Playmate of the Year and Instagram’s “it girl” Lindsey Pelas. My director Louie Mayo assembled an awesome crew and I had help from a very talented young lady Jenny Burpee who assembled the cast, including super star choreographer Taylor Thompson, pro dancers Natalie Rose White, Kayla Janssen, Abigail Willemsen, Keeley Ahrold, Shannon D'Souza, Venessa Nichole, Mariah Chandler and Brynn Marie Fehir, who tore it up.
Then we topped it off with one of the most talented little people out there, Alma Ordonez who stole the show and my good friend Eric Levine who is one of the most prolific club operators in the world. I still can’t believe he agreed to play a hunchback, and he killed it.
Here's the exclusive premiere of "Thunda Thighs." Now put down that Halloween candy, or Fitty will slap it out of your hand.
Photos by Promo/Fitty Smallz