With Murder Inc. CEO Irv Gotti announcing plans to drop Ashanti from the label, SOHH spoke with Ja Rule to find out what he thinks about the Ashanti-Irv saga.
Rule explained his neutral position in the ongoing beef between Irv and Ashanti.
“I’ma say it like this, Irv is my brother and I respect his decisions,” Rule said. “I don’t have any problems with Ashanti. That’s my sister. We’re a family so it’s funny, it’s like my brother and my sister are fighting. You see what I’m saying? It’s a funny thing to me but Gotti is my brother before she was my sister so you take it how you take it. But me and Bon Bon are cool and I got love for her, that’s my sister man..I think me and Bon Bon can coincide and do some records together again. I think we might even be able to hit the road and do some shows…Me and Bonnie don’t have issues, her and Irv have issues and it’s a tough thing you know what I’m saying? He brought her into the family but…me and her never had no real friction at all.” (SOHH)
Irv previously broke down his issues with the R&B singer earlier this year.
“The relationship has run its course,” Gotti explained in an interview last May. “The chemistry of what’s needed — we’re in two totally different places. You’re talking to somebody that took her and shaped and molded her and put her out there for the world, and it blew up. We in the Guinness Book of World Records for the highest selling debut by a female R&B artist, 503 [thousand]. We did it! My views and philosophies and her views and philosophies is not meeting up…I don’t think she can win. She needs some guidance with that…But she’s not thinking like that. Really, I couldn’t tell you what she’s thinking. So that relationship has run its course and honestly, I’m gonna just drop her.” (MTV)
Irv helped launch Ashanti’s career around the early 2000’s with help from Rule and Fat Joe.
With hitmaker Irv Gotti at the helm, Ashanti blasted into the urban music scene in 2002, topping the charts with multiple singles at once. She quickly became a sensation, gracing the covers of magazines and dominating urban radio. Ashanti built her reputation with duets, where she would complement an already popular rapper — Ja Rule (“Always on Time”), Fat Joe (“What’s Luv?”), the Notorious B.I.G. (“Unfoolish”) — contrasting the tough-guy male perspective with her own. (All Music)
Despite a strong selling debut, her efforts were later overshadowed with The Inc.’s legal troubles.
Chapter II, topped the Billboard album chart on the heels of its hot lead single, “Rock Wit U (Awww Baby).” The album’s success was somewhat eclipsed, however, by all the negative drama surrounding the Murder Inc. camp at the time (i.e., the FBI investigation and the G-Unit feuding). A Christmas album followed late that year and Concrete Rose appeared in December 2004. Though she remained with The Inc. for 2008’s The Declaration, she sought out a number of producers outside the label’s in-house team. (Billboard)
Check out Ja Rule’s SOHH interview below: