Jada going to Def Jam can either be the best move of his career or the absolute worst. I think he’s the type of artist that needs a major label behind him to give him that push because he has a surprisingly large amount of crossover appeal, but is Def Jam really the right spot for him? Since Jay and L.A. Reid took over, Def Jam has had consistent success with southern artists like Young Jeezy and Rick Ross while East Coast vets like Method Man, Redman and the Roots had projects that didn’t fulfill its potential at all. Add to that some questionable signings (some who have already been dropped) and the three greatest moments in Jay and L.A.’s short time at Def Jam have been:
- Kingdom Come – Jay says it went over people’s heads, but what else do you want him to say when people didn’t like it? “I didn’t make a good album”? This president learned from the other president – never admit a mistake. Instead, compound it with another mistake so people forget your previous mistake. Jay also proved that over-promotion and endless cross-marketing with any company interested, whether you actually like their product or not, isn’t enough to sell records. I know, I know, fans not blindly handing over their money and accepting anything that’s thrown at them are stupid, right?
- Kanye’s Graduation – I think it’s safe to say the success of this project even caught some of the Def Jam heads off-guard (a cynic would say, “Well, that’s because they weren’t the ones buying back the album.” Maybe so), but was this project successful because a) it’s good music b) it’s not 50 Cent c) all of the above? I think you could make an argument that it’s a combination of Graduation being good music that fans like along with it not being 50 Cent music, who fans seem to want to destroy four years after catapulting him to super-stardom…Kanye might want to watch out for these fans.
- Rick Ross’ “Hustlin’” – Everybody everywhere knew that this drug dealer/rapper knew the real Noriega and fervently applauded him for that. This song had dudes hitting Weight Gainer 3000, buying sunglasses and tossing out all razors. Some females also did this, which you should find very disturbing. Anyway, this was, by all accounts, the biggest smash Def Jam has had under the Jay/L.A. reign.
If your album titles generate more talk than the actual music on the album, is that necessarily a good thing?
Did Def Jam get a bulk discount on R.Kelly features? It seems like a prerequisite that if you want to drop an album on Def Jam today, you have to have a child molester on your song. Thank God Def Jam doesn’t run a daycare.
Rick Ross is coming back out, hunting manatees behind the strength of the R.Kelly/Runners song “Speedin’”. On the song, Ross claims, “American Idol, I got fans like Fantasia/Read between the lines, yo, he fucked with Fantasia.” First off, having fans like Fantasia means you have what, 4, 5 fans? I’m not sure if she’s the one you want to have fans like. And messing with Fantasia, is that really something to brag about? Maybe I haven’t been paying attention, but I thought there were some other women you could brag about being with. If Ross keeps on making songs with R. Kelly, he’s going to be bragging about having fans like Ruben Studdard or whatever loser won it last year. The only thing I was “speedin’” to do when listening to “Speedin’” was hitting the fast-forward button.
Ransom may get overreaction of the year for “Kid Brother.” The story I got that sparked the diss track was that Joe called Ransom to get on Mood Muzik 3. Ran said yes and laid down his verse. Then Joe put Hitchcock, Ran’s former partner in the A-Team, on the same track without telling Ransom. Of course Ransom didn’t like that, but going public with it before calling Joe is not a good look for him.
But the question is is that if Joe was such a snake and so fake to Ransom, why would he agree to get on Mood Muzik 3 and not say anything at all, ever, about how fake Joe was before? If Joe really did Ran like that, then Ran had a right to be mad, but with the way he handled it, he made himself look worse. And Joe, if you got enough material to make 15:07 minutes worth of disses to Ransom, should you have asked him to be on Mood Muzik 3 and should you have even been working with him in the first place? I know one thing, if I have over 15 minutes of negative things to say about a person, I’m probably not going to be lending them my Simpsons DVDs, much less rapping along side them.
And arguing about whether or not you slept on an apartment floor or studio floor is not a good look. If you are a 25 year-old person and you haven’t slept on a floor at some point in your life, something is wrong with you and you need to check yourself. If you went to high school, there’s a good chance you wound up on the floor sometime throughout those four or five years. If you went to college, there’s a good chance you slept on the floor within your first week of being on campus. Even if you didn’t go to college, are you going to tell me there was never a time you were playing video games at your boy’s house until 3 in the morning and fell asleep on his couch? And if that’s never happened, there is probably at least one time when you had one too many pitchers of brewski and either slept at a stranger’s house a friend’s house. The only difference is that your friend didn’t make a song about it (hopefully).
I think a big question surrounding this whole issue with Ransom and Joe Budden is that if Joe really was sleeping on Ransom’s floor, what’s it saying about Ransom if he didn’t have a couch for Joe to crash on?
The loyal readers out there will remember Royal Flush telling me a couple years ago about how he got Capone and N.O.R.E. to do a track together for his album when they were beefing. Peep this throwback:
“I did some bullshit that they both don’t know about. I booked two different sessions. I made Capone come through lay his verse. And then I made N.O.R.E. come through and I cut Capone’s verse off so he never heard it. So I got a song with both of them. (laughs)
When are they going to find out?
I guess when we have the listening party somewhere! I didn’t say nothing to them yet. I was with Capone yesterday. When we listen to that song, I just fast-forward that song all the time, or I let his verse play and then I cut it off. He don’t know yet, but they will!”
My guess is Joe and Ransom will be friends again next week.
It’s nice to see eBayer Ghostface aka PureRealness and Wu getting along so well. The main concern of anybody in the Wu fam right now should be watching kung-fu flicks, playing chess and making music. If you guys want to talk about that, I’ll listen all day. What I don’t need to listen to is Ghostface complaining about an album release date and then the album everybody wants getting pushed back another week to satisfy Ghost. If you guys don’t care for each other or argue like schoolgirls late for a tea party, that’s fine with me. Argue all you want, just make sure I don’t hear it. As if you guys didn’t have enough to worry about coming out again after releasing two subpar Wu-Tang albums and some very subpar solo efforts, now you’re going to argue over release dates? I know that groups argue and not everyone can get along. The only difference is that most group members don’t run to the media to vent their problems. Ghost never should have taken an in-house issue out of the house, but now that he did, one of the main focuses for the next few weeks leading up to the release of the Wu’s long-awaited 8 Diagrams is going to be how Ghost isn’t getting along with other members and if there is “beef” in the Clan, like we haven’t heard enough of that in the past. At least now we’re seeing more and more reasons as to why Wu-Tang has not been able to drop consistently as a group since 2001 and why their last album was in 2001. It may be Wu-Tang Forever, but if certain members drop more complaints than hot tracks, that could easily change.
I guess Cassidy wants to get his buzz up in the most predictable way possible…When in doubt, call out Jay-Z and don’t support your claim with any real reasons.
If KRS is going on Celebrity Fit Club, does that make Low Carbs and No Trans-Fats the newest element of hip-hop?
And on a sidenote, I really thought that show was for obese people. At least it started off that way. Now it seems like you don’t even have to be fat to be on it. That should be good news for M1, stic.man and Rich Boy.
By the way, where did dead prez go? How badly do we need a new album by them right about now?
Reasons to stay a hip-hop fan for another week:
Supastition’s Leave of Absence
Sick Jacken and DJ Muggs’ Legend of the Mask and the Assassin
Ras Kass getting freedom
Royce da 5’9” having to release songs to promote The Bar Exam 2
Did anyone else think Prodigy comparing himself to Malcolm X on DJ Whoo Kid’s radio show was a bit of an overstatement?
Gotta go time. I have to make a list of everyone who has ever crashed on my Wal-Mart futon and figure out how to diss all of them at once. Wish me luck!