Everything is good
man. It's strictly business right now. I'm just looking at the game and checking
out which angles dudes are coming from. I'm ready to hit the ground running
are you working on right now?
I'm putting my
album out. I've been in the studio for the past three years just recording.
I just want to hit the streets hard and get it poppin. I got some things on
the table right now with different dudes. I'm not gonna settle for anything.
I'm gonna get what I feel I deserve. I am in a good situation right now. That's
all I can say about that.
So you can't
let any names out?
I don't wanna let
any names out, but I'm in a great position that a lot of dudes aren't in. It's
really, really good right now.
rhyming for awhile and you've never dropped an official album, is that frustrating
Yeah it is, but
I have to take it like everything happens for a reason. I never stopped recording.
I've been in the studio all these years. Since the 41st Side came out I've stayed
recording and it's only helped me to perfect my craft. There aren't too many
dudes messing with me. I got more than enough music to come out with. I feel
better than I ever did and I'm in a better position lyrically and musically.
I'm really good right now so I'm not really mad about that because I'm capitalizing
off of my misfortunes right now.
Do you look
at your not having dropped an album as bad luck or bad business, or both?
It's both, because
I went back to the penitentiary in 2001 and that definitely set me back a lot.
Who knows what opportunities would have been presented after that 41st Side
album. A lot of people liked that and how I put it together. It was opening
doors for me and I was going back to jail. As far as bad businesses, I was dealing
with the wrong people. I was putting 110% and they was saying that they were
going to put 110% in and they didn't, and that really stagnated me. I was putting
my all into the music, and they just have to make the phone calls. They wasn't
doing that. So that was definitely bad business. But they're paying for it now
because they're not accelerating in their position. Their career is in a decline.
In not helping me they hurt themselves at the same time.
Why did you
make the Nas song asking him all those questions?
It was not something
I ever wanted to do. First off, that was homeboy-to-homeboy. There was nothing
insulting or derogatory in that record. It was just me expressing how I felt
in my heart to him. If you listen to it, there's not nothing in there that's
a diss! I never wanted to make the record, I'd rather us get it poppin' with
him, let's hit the industry by storm! He didn't want to do that, and at the
same time, my people are dying on the streets, that's not a figure of speech,
they're literally dying. These are people that we both say we care about. He's
not there. And I'm going to court for people that are supposed to be out and
they're blowing trials for 100 years natural life plus 87 years I'm
going up North to visit them and he's not there. Everything I said in that song
was from my heart. I would have rather never had to make that record. The reason
I did it is because we haven't talked. I haven't talked to him since August.
And the reason I ain't talk to him is because he was supposed to help me out
with a deal. These dudes from Sony wanted to holla at him about me and that's
when he turned his phone off and didn't return calls. Now his number's changed he
wouldn't return my calls, I'm in limbo! The last time I seen him was when we
did the concert at Central Park. Universal wanted to give me a deal too and
he doesn't take that meeting. Then he goes to Universal behind my back and takes
another dude named Dirty Mouth up there and they didn't want Dirty Mouth. And
he never went back to Universal. Then he did the same thing with Columbia. You've
got to understand that the type of life I live is that if somebody walked out
of a meeting and told me to chill for a month, in that time span a lot can happen.
We're not promised tomorrow. So for you to do that to me you're just saying
"fuck me." The only thing I have is the ability to make music. That's
the only thing I have to live off of, so if you leave me to the streets you're
leaving me to die.
Is Nas still
Nah, Nas is not
QB. QB is where you see people standing in court, you see unity, you see people
holding each other down. You can see he's not QB in his music. "Illmatic"
is Queensbridge. That was when he was living with his mom talking about his
20 years of experience of living in the projects. That album is Hip Hop in it's
purest form, and that's not where he's at right now. You had to be connected
to people. He was connected to me. I'm still in Queensbridge everyday. When
anyone hears Queensbridge, my name is attached to that. He gets his stories
from being with people like me. He got on straight out of high school, why the
fuck would he be out there and fuck up his career? But he has to get that creativity
from somewhere. You can't get that in Hollywood. You have to get that street
essence from being in the street. That's where you get that from. That's where
you get everything that makes people gravitate to you. He had to keep me around
to gravitate to people. He don't have that. That's why he's not connected with
the people the way he should be. Nas is not Queensbridge, not at all!
Did you feel
like you should have been invited to Nas' wedding?
Yeah, if that's
your man, that's who you invite. Who else are you gonna invite to a gathering
besides your people? If something happens to you and you're lying in a hospital
and you pass away and you can see people showing love at your funeral, you'd
be like "damn!" why wouldn't you want someone there. If that is your
fam why wouldn't you invite them, unless it's some other shit. That's just me
being real asking questions and saying that. There's a lot of people around
him that say it behind his back but won't say it to his face because they're
scared because he's all they got. Me, on the other hand, I speak from the heart.
I'm not worried about none of that.
How much should
Nas have helped the Bravehearts?
That's an absolute
truth. You can look at artists like Nelly, he has the St. Lunatics. He promotes
them. Eminem. Obie Trice puts out an album and does well. If you look at the
greatest artists, they have loyalty to their people. Tupac, Junior Mafia Junior
Mafia wasn't even rhyming and he pushed them like that. 50 puts out everybody
and makes sure that they eat. Does Nashawn deserve something for going at the
Diplomats? Now Nashawn has beef with the Diplomats because of Nas. And he still
hasn't put out an album. Look back to Nas' first video. Bravehearts were there.
I could show you old pictures of everybody standing around before they even
had hair on they face. They deserve to be in the projects fucked up with no
money. They have to work now and be fucked up and be struggling. If you look
at all these motherfuckers from my projects, they didn't even finish high school.
What the fuck are they gonna do now? They started rhyming when they was younger.
What job opportunities do they got now? Some of them went to jail. What are
they going to do? Realistically? Do they deserve that. But when their man that
they know and love is riding around in a Phantom and has a big old mansion and
your man has to have token money and budget his lunch money, you can live with
that? C'mon man.
Has Nas gotten
back to you after you put out the track?
Nah, Nas ain't
get back to me. He doesn't have any numbers on me. The few people that was dealing
with them, they tried to reach out but it ain't nothing to talk about. There's
nothing to debate about. You do what you gotta do, much success to you, let
me do what I need to do. I don't need to be distracted. All the energy that
I was putting into your project that's what I need to do for myself. People
don't see how hard I worked with Nas and the ideas I gave him, I know that.
I was there to support him. Like if you got a championship boxer and you're
in his corner, you're gonna tell him what he needs to do to help him win. When
I was over doing that I was doing that because that's my part. That's what it
is. There's really nothing to talk about. It's about me doing what I have to
do and putting my energy into myself.
Who are you
working with right now?
I got producers
from all over. I got fire producers. Uno Dos, Ben Grimm (Now-N-Laterz). I already
worked with Alchemist, I worked with Havoc, I still got old tracks I did with
them. I've done records with Fat Joe. Right now me and 'Kiss are working on
a couple records. Me and 'Mega. I got a lot of people that are gonna come out
that are gonna be dope, like Uno Dos, Artillery. My whole plan is bringing them
to the world. I know how nice they are. I know what they're going to bring to
the game and that's what I want to help them do. I wanna let the world see what
I'm about. Let the world hear me. Let my story be told and let the world decide
what's real and what's fake and how much they're feeling me.
told me that Queensbridge is too divided and that the MC's there don't want
to see others blow, do you think that's true?
Yeah, it shows.
You can't judge somebody by their words, you judge them by their actions that
they display. A lot of times their actions are contradictions of what they say.
Like if you want someone to eat, you don't have to say it, you just have to
do it. No one is coming to the table unwilling to work for their money. No one's
asking for handouts. Everyone's willing to work, but there's never going to
be any unity unless there's some new leaders in Queensbridge. Don't just judge
me by my words, look at the actions. You could name a whole list of all the
dope Queensbridge artists. Now look at "why ain't y'all down together?"
That's because the people in the most powerful position don't want to do that.
With the Littles
and Mobb Deep beef, did you get involved in that at all?
That's a personal
beef. They was fucking with each other. Littles was on Rap City, the Source
with them, they were down with each other. If I step in with somebody, it's
over me over some shit that they violated with me and my peoples personally.
I don't like to get into other beefs. If other people have problems I try to
stay neutral. When I put 41st Side together, I tried to unite everybody. I brought
dudes on tracks that weren't talking. That is how I came on trying to do, and
now you see that it's not going to happen. Now it's time for me to do me. Let's
see how good Lake can do. People haven't gotten the full effect of me. You can
not like me but you have to respect what I say because it's the truth.
What are your
goals right now?
My goals first
it to let everybody hear my voice, let everybody hear my story, and hit the
ground running. I need to do this for my peoples because a lot of people have
been suffering because other people have been saying they'll make something
happen and it's obviously not gonna happen. Now it's my duty to make that happen
because there is people that are depending on me that are in the penitentiary
and the only way that they can see daylight again is if I get in the position.
People that are in the position to help don't give a fuck. They don't give a
fuck about me as well. My duty now is to step up to the plate and let my presence
be felt and leave my mark and do the shit that I'm talking about these other
people not doing. It's my duty to get that done now.
A lot of people
are going to be mad at you for making that track about Nas and speaking out
against him, what do you have to say to them?
People that say
"why you gotta diss Nas?" People that say that, my music ain't even
for you, my words are not even for you. If you talk real questions, I will answer
them, because it's real. But I'm not here to address these weirdo motherfuckers
who sit behind a computer with a pair of glasses and a Chaka Khan wig butt-naked.
I don't give a fuck about them. I'm here to talk to people who really understand
this music and understand this culture and know what this shit is really about.
So if you don't understand what loyalty is, there's no way for you to be even
checking for Lake.