As former Bad Boy artist Shyne working on re-emerging onto music scene, SOHH recently hit up producer Ken Lewis to find out what tunes they have cranked out and why the rapper received backlash about his new rapping style upon leaving jail in 2009.
Promising a slew of new music to begin dropping in the near future, Lewis said Shyne is confident in his craft no matter what any critic thinks.
“I mixed like 18 songs for him and I produced the first single coming out in December,” Lewis told SOHH. “You know, when he got out, obviously the biggest thing that changed about him as an artist was his flow and he was getting hammered on the blogs for it. But I’ve got to say, I have so much respect for him for just believing in what he’s doing and not changing just because some people say he should change. Imagine if everybody said, ‘I don’t like Drake’s flow, he should change his flow.’ And then Drake changes his flow and you’re like, ‘Did Drake really change his flow because the blogs told him to?’ That would be ridiculous. Just because some people aren’t connecting with what Shyne is doing, everybody is like Shyne should change, but why? Shyne knows who his audience is. He knows who he is trying to reach. He’s trying to reach the people in the streets and the jails. Shyne doesn’t give a f*ck if the bloggers don’t like him. To me, I have a ton of respect for him for saying, ‘This is who I am now, this is what I want to do. I want this to be the best version. Love it or leave it.’ He didn’t bow to the pressure and he’s told me, ‘I don’t give a f*ck what those people say.’ Is that supposed to be a bad thing because he has integrity?” (SOHH)
In 2010, Shyne addressed the hype behind his new rhyming flow.
“[People] should be happy that I changed…I was monotonous and angry,” he explained in an interview. “I can’t give them that old sh*t. That anger you heard in the booth was really me. It was like listening to someone with Post Traumatic Stress [Disorder]…I’m comfortable with mine. I figured it out, but I’m not a communist. People want that sh*t, but I can’t give it to them in the old way…I’m not no f*cking magician. You gotta make that sh*t…It’s about having character and integrity. I don’t care if I only sell one album.” (Hip Hop DX)
The rapper’s new sound was also previously discussed by Nah Right founder Eskay.
“Ok, so I just had a conversation with Po,” Nah Right blogger Eskay wrote. “He wanted to explain why there’s been such a drastic change in his rhyme style/flow since his release from prison…Here’s the gist of it: That guy we used to know pre-2001? The guy who shot up the club? The guy who stood in front of the judge and took a 10 year bid? The guy who used to spit like this? That guy is dead. That was the guy Jamal Barrow used to be, and he no longer wants to be that man. That man made choices that he’ll have to deal with for the rest of his life, and put his mother through one of the worst experiences any mother could ever have to go through. And he doesn’t want to be that man anymore. He explained, in no uncertain terms, that in order for him to move forward with his life, and stay on the right path, he feels he needs to make drastic changes, and the flow you hear now, is just a small part of that. So the Shyne you hear now, like it or not, for better or for worse, is the Shyne we’ll be hearing from here out. You don’t have to like it, but I think you have to respect it.” (Nah Right)
This week, Jewish rapper Matisyahu dropped a new Shyne-assisted record.
Jewish rappers Matisyahu and Shyne band together to celebrate the “Miracle” of Hanukkah. The former Bad Boy adds a verse to the reggae star’s single about the Festival of Lights, which appears on his Miracle EP. “I recorded this aiming to make a celebratory, feel-good song that still gets across the depth of Judaism rather than the typical watered down Jewish humor about matzah balls and Chanukah Harry,” said Matisyahu. “I’m trying to make the Jewish kids out there proud.” (Rap-Up)
Check out a recent Shyne interview below: