Pulse Report: SOHH EXCLUSIVE: Drake Says Sorry For Sylvia Rhone Diss, Jay-Z's "Blueprint" Gets Old, 50 Cent Aims For "Lifetime Achievement"
Friday, Aug 14, 2009 11:55AM
In this week's Pulse Report the streets are buzzing about Jay-Z selling Blueprint 3 to an older audience, Drake apologizing to Sylvia Rhone, 50 Cent shooting for a big time award, Joe Budden challenging Raekwon to a fight, and Alfamega being outted as an informant--again.
[Editor Note: The views of this column do not necessarily reflect those of SOHH.com]
1. Grown Folks Business
It's no secret that ever since Jay-Z released "D.O.A (Death Of Autotune)" he hasn't made many friends in the Generation Y crowd. He's had issues with several of today's young hip-hop stars; The Game and DJ Web Star just to name a few. And it seems from his actions this week that he's making a conscious effort to sell his upcoming album Blueprint 3 to an older audience.
First he escorted media mogul, Oprah Winfrey around his old Brooklyn neighborhood. Then he shot a Roc-A-Wear 10th anniversary ad with director and fellow Brooklynite Spike Lee. The trip to BK even had the usually anti hip-hop fan Oprah, gushing over Jay on her radio show.
"Oh, Jay-Z, my new best friend. He was so charming and delightful, and he smelled so good! And it's that kind of thing where you hug a guy, and the scent is sort of buried in them. When we went to the second location, I could still smell him on me. It was like, 'Oh, this is wonderful.' It was really a conversation, and at the end of the day, you feel like you get to know someone. I feel like I met a new friend. It was really great."
The maturation of Jay-Zeezy is easy. Making a shrewd business move Jay is reaching out to the Generation X crowd that supported him in the start. With that he's garnering the corporate support of titans like Oprah. He's aligning himself with old legends like Spike Lee. He's shouting out veteran DJs like Funk Master Flex and DJ Clue, while snubbing younger guys like DJ Whoo Kid. Yeah, he's got a record with Kanye West and Rihanna, but those two artist appeal to the Generation X crowd. Note he passed on leading with a Drake assisted-single. Drake is more of a Generation Y craze. This is more than trading the throwback jersey for a button-up shirt. This is, I'm old and I know it and I'm going to sell it. Will it work?
2. Apology In Order
Most rappers usually wait until their career is in the tank to beef with their label. Drop a wack album? Blame the label. Sales suck? Blame the label. Well Drake is not your usual rapper and he took the unusual approach of dissing his label before he even dropped a debut album. In particular he had some harsh criticism for Universal Records chief Sylvia Rhone.
On "Say What's Real," a track from his mixtape So Far Gone he rapped: "I've always been something that these labels can't buy/especially if they trying to take a piece of my soul/and Sylvia be telling Tez/Damn, Drake fly/and he just be like, 'silly motherfucka I know'". Then he went on to tell Fader magazine why he signed a deal with Universal that reportedly voids any involvement by Motown. "I went through Universal Republic because I don't fuck with Motown. At All."
Well that news didn't go over well with the folks at Universal Motown. According to Billboard.com the label stepped in and demanded that all Drake product be labeled Motown. Now Drake has told the folks at MTV News he's sorry for the way he handled the situation.
"I can definitely say for me, for furthering the negativity, I can definitely say I apologize. I don't know her personally to discredit her character. It's not the right thing to do. I was looking for an opportunity recently to apologize for how vicious I've been. Not to say I negate my feelings... I still feel strongly about it. But I?m a person that usually handles things with much more tact."
Seems like the young fella is getting way ahead of himself. Drake hasn't dropped an album yet and he's already mad at his boss. He's got it all wrong. Rappers don?t start beefing with their label/label heads until they suck. They drop a crap album and then blame label for the crappy outcome. C'mon Jimmy, they didn't teach you that at Degrassi?
3. In My Lifetime
We've seen Kanye West throw epic tantrums after not receiving a trophy at an award show. We've seen others take umbrage with not being nominated at all. 50 Cent tends to avoid getting emotional about awards and such. Unlike some of his counterparts the G-Unit general doesn?t want the glow, he wants the glory--in the form of a lifetime achievement award that is. Fif told MTV News award show snubs today don't mean as much to him as getting recognized for the full body of his work tomorrow.
"I made a mistake," Fif said recently in New York City. "Early on [in my career], I said, 'They'll get the trophy, I'll get the checks.' That's because I wasn't receiving the acknowledgment based on the aggressive content I was putting out. I've been nominated for 16 Grammy awards and still ain't got no trophies. Largest debut in hip-hop to date -- they just ignored it when it was time to give the trophies out. So I just started saying, 'They can have the trophies and I'll have the checks.' That didn't mean that I didn't have love for the actual art form. But to give a basic answer that people would understand, I would be secure with my life, I'll continue make music, but I won't be in front of them and get recognized. I'll get a lifetime-achievement award after based on my full body of work. At that point, it'll be too much for them to ignore." (MTV)
Word. I feel Fif on this. There's nothing worse than watching grown man bitch over a trophy. But I got ask ya'll, is 50's career to this point worth a lifetime achievement award? Has his impact in hip-hop been worth a lifetime of praise? I'm on the fence right now. Maybe ya'll can persuade me one way or the other.
4. Dance Wit' Me
After being assaulted (punched in the face) by a member Raekwon's entourage while backstage at the Rock Da Bells concert in Los Angeles, Joe Budden wants to settle the score. The New Jersey rapper challenged Raekwon to an old fashion square dance. No, not the folksy face-off you do in a barn somewhere in Hicksville, USA, but the...aw hell...I'll let Joe explain.
"...A square dance is when two n*ggas square up [and] square off...N*gga told us he ain't wanna square dance. He ain't had a square dance in 30 years. Which first off, how the f*ck old do that make you? And number two, why not? This is the same n*gga on the f*cking blogs talking about 'Joe Budden is soft,' 'Joe Budden look like he called the cops,' and he don't wanna square dance with me...It's either a square dance or no comment at all...I need the fans to urge this n*gga..Ask the n*gga why he don't wanna square dance." (YouTube)
I know it sounds the same, but this is different. Someone literally hits the floor in two-step. While Rae hasn?t responded to Joe's challenge, pretty much everyone in hip-hop has an opinion on the conflict. Boot Camp Clik rapper Buckshot told SOHH News that "Motherf*ckers is beefing and ain't selling records." Referring to the fact that the art of beefing for profit only works for a few rappers, "50 Cent, LL Cool J".
Given some time to think Joe went on New York's Hot 97 radio to chat it up with Angie Martinez, who posed the option of peace talks. And Joe sounded as if he was ready to pull back his challenge and save the last dance for another time.
"I think we're already there. I'm not saying me and him in particular but, the people who need to speak to each other are definitely speaking to each other."
Awww, don't back down now! I say, dance n*gga, dance. The constant Internet thuggin by rappers has to stop. Let's see these dudes knuckle up like men for a change. I'd rather see these rappers beat each other over the head, than have them beat me over the head with their fraudulent thuggery.
5. Paper Trail
In his quest to rehabilitate his damaged career and street cred, rapper Alfa Mega has told folks that the allegations of his role as government informant were forged by phony documents. Well, the people who first brought the rumor to life, The Smoking Gun, have released the actual government transcript from Cedric "Alfamega" Zellars 1996 testimony. Alfa is spilling the beans on many criminals he was associated with back in the day.
"During one meeting with DEA Agent Lori Schlag, Zellars identified criminal associates when shown photos by the federal investigator. At another point during his testimony, Zellars referred to "several other guys I have gave information about." The transcript also shows that Zellars's testimony was briefly halted when he was stricken with a stomach ache. When his cross-examination resumed, the convicted drug and weapons dealer spoke about his efforts to contact the FBI. "I had people calling, and I was writing," testified Zellars, who was then serving a nine-year prison sentence. When a defense lawyer asked him about providing information to the government, Zellars noted, "I been asked for information. They picked some of the guys up, but it didn't do nothing to help me. I just gave it." Asked why he cooperated, Zellars answered, "Because they asked me." In return for his snitching, Zellars had 18 months shaved off his prison term. (The Smoking Gun)
Damn homie! You really shouldn't have gone with the "they forging documents" defense. You had to know this was coming after you did that. You're done round here. Starting to think T.I. had every right to distance himself from you all along. You a telling-ass n*gga. You were just telling on everybody, just because they asked you to. SMH.
In other news from the hip-hop crime report, Corey "C-Murder" Miller was convicted of murder in his trial. On the
Alfa Mega testimony of club bouncer Darneil Jordan the court found the rapper guilty of the death of 16 year-old Steve Thomas, who Miller was convicted of murdering in 2002. Miller's sister Germaine made a plea for justice.
"Where is justice? Where is Barack?"
SMH. On that note I'm out
[Editor's Note: The views expressed in this column do not necessarily reflect those of SOHH]