Despite having a fleet of precious metals in a wide variety of flavors, rapper Plies (born Algernod Lanier Washington) opts for rental cars when driving around his hometown of Ft. Meyers, Florida. “I don’t know why I do it,” he explains. “I like the feeling of being low key I guess…but, when I go to the club, I definitely take one of the vehicles in my fleet. Which one just depends on my mood.” And, boy, does he have options. Plies’ arsenal of rides includes a ’74 Chevy Impala, ’68 Grand Prix (his favorite at the moment), 2007 Bentley Flying Spur, 2007 Maserati Quattro Sport, Porsche Cayenne, Hummer H2, and he just bought a new Bentley Azure convertible.
“I never thought I’d be interested in the cars I have now because, I guess, they were out of my financial jurisdiction before now,” Plies says. “I don’t really get to drive them as much, so I’m not sure why I buy them sometimes. I guess I got them to reward myself for all my hard work.” But, Plies doesn’t feel the need to reward himself with the latest sports car on the market, since he’d rather be seen cruising in a luxury car. “There’s something about that expensive feel that shows off your level of accomplishment.”
Plies’ accomplishments in the rap world may have afforded him some fine rides, but it wasn’t easy getting to where’s he’s at now, especially since hip-hop wasn’t always a main priority to him. Actually, Plies was never going to rap until his brother finally persuaded him to try it. “The music scene was never really big where I’m from, so I never had those ambitions to be an artist. Sports and the streets were big in my hood.” Once Plies got his feet wet, he knew music was what he wanted to do, especially after he realized how powerful music is. “At the end of the day, music helps us get through our struggles and trials and tribulations. When I really understood that, it made sense to make it make my life’s ambition.”
In 2007, Plies emerged on the scene with his debut album, The Real Testament (Atlantic/Slip-N-Slide/ Big Gate, 2007), selling more than a half million copies and released his sophomore effort, Definition of Real (Atlantic/Slip-N-Slide/ Big Gate, 2008), the summer of 2008. Six months later, he released his third album, Da REAList (Real (Atlantic/Slip-N-Slide/ Big Gate, 2008). The album debuted at No. 14 on the Billboard 200 and has sold more than 114,000 copies. “My last album went gold, and my current has the most albums sold by a Florida artist in the first week,” he boasts. “I think I’m in a real good place right now.” The rapper announced that he has completed a fourth album already. Tentatively, he plans to release it in April or May of 2009, but states that the exact date will depend on how much success his third album has.