Tuesday, April 24, 2018
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Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon headliner Flo Rida talks 'Good Feeling,' working out

Don't jinx it. But with each passing day, it's looking more and more like Good Feeling is Flo Rida's biggest hit ever. Yes, bigger than Low. Yes, bigger than Right Round.

But to hear Flo tell it, Good Feeling is only the beginning.

"We've got this next record called Wild Ones," Flo Rida said Thursday by phone from New York. "It's going to be super huge. I think it's going to be neck and neck, that and Good Feeling." And he's not stopping there. On his upcoming album, Only One Rida (Part 2), he says, "I got one that's gonna be bigger than all those No. 1 records."

That's a bold statement. But these days, the Carol City rapper can afford to be bold.

Good Feeling, Flo's addictive, driving twist on Avicii's Etta James-sampling Levels, has been everywhere lately. Last week, he was in Indianapolis for Super Bowl XLVI, performing on a postgame edition of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. On Sunday, he'll be in St. Pete for Tampa Bay's first Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon, performing a free concert at the finish line in North Straub Park at around 10 a.m. For race organizers, the timing couldn't have worked out better — this week, Good Feeling hit No. 1 on the Billboard pop chart.

Congratulations on Good Feeling hitting No. 1. That's gotta be a, um, good feeling.

Oh, man. It's super amazing. Just starting out my career having a No. 1 record a couple of times — everybody's counting me out at this point. Working with the late, great Etta James on this record, working with Avicii and Dr. Luke, it's been amazing for me to be a part of that.

Can you tell me how Good Feeling evolved? Did you hear Levels and immediately think, "There's my hook?"

My A&R, we were sitting in the recording studio, and he played the Avicii record for me, and I was like, "Oh my god," and did some verses. So I wanted to get with Dr. Luke and Avicii and come up with my own version of it. My whole team, the Atlantic staff, decided it would be a great hook. But I've always been a fan of Etta James. I was just watching the movie Cadillac Records, where Beyonce did renditions of her songs and everything. I've always been a big fan, so to hear that record and know that was her, I was like, "I gotta do this."

I'm sure you're not going to be running in this half-marathon, but are you a runner?

Oh, yeah. Did you see the Good Feeling video?

Yeah. Do you run every day?

A lot of times. I'm always trying to build my cardio up so I can stay onstage for more than an hour. When I get onstage, I think I probably lose about 3 to 5 pounds. So I'm always running.

If you're not touring or performing, what's your typical workout like?

Honestly, everything you see in the Good Feeling video, that's basically what I do. My manager comes on the road with me everywhere I go around the world, and we do a boxing regimen, and I go running as well. I'd probably say at least 3 miles. Honestly, working out, it ain't like it's something that feels good. But no pain, no gain.

This whirlwind you're in the middle of now, with Good Feeling and Wild Ones — does it feel different than with Low or Right Round?

It actually feels bigger. It's one thing when you start out as an artist and you get a No. 1 record. You think it just comes with the territory. It's just like if you're born rich, you don't really recognize it, because you were born rich. When I got to No. 1 with them, I didn't know anything about radio, none of that. I was just making music. Now that I understand it, to have a No. 1 record, it's like, wow. At this point, a lot of people expect your career to go down. It's like I'm on the up-and-up at this point. I've been in the game five years, and my music is going higher and higher.

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