[With New York hip-hop on the rise again courtesy of newcomers like Bobby Shmurda and Troy Ave, battle rap king Murda Mook tells SOHH readers he’s ready to lead the Big Apple’s charge.]

I embrace the titles. I’m from Harlem, first and foremost and I’m from New York. Whenever there’s anything going down with the city, I want my name to be a part of it. There’s so much history with the city as far as music is concerned and also just in general.

Early on, I was like, “I’m not a battle rapper.” But then, I just started thinking, “F*ck all that. I’m a battle rapper. You’re right and I’m the best battle rapper to walk across this Earth.” That’s how I felt I should carry it and it wasn’t on some cocky sh*t. I was just saying that’s how I feel.

Before it became popular again, people used to watch battle rap but they tried to shun it. They tried to shy away from it. Now it’s the cool thing to do. Everybody is watching it. The fans and the artists are fans of me. I’m cool with being a battle rapper. I’m cool being the king of what I do.

We have our own fan base. If this is my castle, I’m going to hold this down. But if that’s the case, I’m still going to go and holler at other teams. I’m still going to leave the castle and holler at some other teams. It is what it is. I take that and I’m going to take full responsibility with whatever happens.

Good or bad, you can point the finger at me. I’m going to take it as far as possible.