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An Exclusive Interview with B.G.
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Brolin: Hey, what's up, BG?
B.G.: What's happenin', pimp?
Brolin: How are you doing, man?
B.G.: I can't call it. I'm just chilling here.
Brolin: Now obviously you've been in the game for a long time, you've been putting out a lot of records, a lot of hits. On the new joint, how is it different and how is it similar to your previous work?
B.G.: On the new album?
B.G.: On the new album, how's it different, and how is it similar? It's similar because I rap for the streets and I rap for the hood, I rap for the block, you know, I rap for my people and as long as I make the streets happy, I'm happy. So when it come down to similarity, people who know me or got any of my previous albums, they already know how I'm comin'. They already know how I'm rockin'. And far as the other question, you know, like different, I mean, is that what you sayin'?
Brolin: Yeah, I mean, is there anything that you're doing differently on this?
B.G.: I mean, I got my own style, you know, my voice speaks for itself... So really you just grow with time. I been doin' this since I was, what, 12, 13 years old, and I'm 25 now. You know, and all my albums really be based on my life story, you know what I'm sayin'? So you know, I just be tellin' my story, tellin' what I've done, what I've been through, what I saw, what my people around me, saw what they been through. Just my life, period. So I'm just pickin' up where I left off on the last album and brining you back into my world, you know?
Brolin: Nice. It sounds good, man. Now I know you've got Mannie Fresh on the "Move Around" single. How is it like reconnecting with him, and is he going to be producing any other tracks on the album?
B.G.: Man, it was a beautiful thing, man, you know what I'm saying. Fresh, when I got back in the studio with Fresh man, it was like magic. I mean, you know, Fresh was the first producer I worked in the studio with. He was the only producer that I worked with, you know what I'm sayin'?
Brolin: Yeah, you guys go way back.
B.G.: Damn near, see I left Cash Money, he's the only producer I worked with so, you know, me and him reunitin', it was like magic, it meant a whole lot to me. I mean, me and Fresh done a whole lot of stuff together but I'm savin' a lot of it for the next album, 'cause actually I just want to tease the streets and tease the people with this first single, just to let 'em know that we back.
Brolin: Back together.
B.G.: Yeah. Yeah.
Brolin: Cool. Do you have a second single planned for the album?
B.G.: I'm going to let the streets pick it, that's what I always do. You know, I pick the first single, 'cause I think I got a good ear for that. And then from there, I shake the streets, I follow what the streets--I go off their judgment. I go off the DJs in the clubs and things of that nature. If I was to pick a second single right now it wouldn't be fair to my fans, you know. I let them pick it.
Brolin: All right. Are you going to be doing a tour to support the album?
Brolin: And do you have any idea who you're going to be playing with?
B.G.: Yeah. I'm going on a promotional tour the end of this month.
Brolin: Is that going to be just you solo, or with the rest of your artists?
B.G.: Yeah, I'm goin' to go out with my Chopper City boys.
Brolin: Besides the album, do you have any outside features or collabos or mix tapes, anything we should know about?
B.G.: Ah, man, I done collabo'd already with damn near everybody in the game. I got this Drama mixtape I'm workin' on right now, this Gangsta Grill I'm about to put out, and then I'm doing the mixtape with Whoo Kid, I'ma drop that. I got collaborations with T.I., Young Buck, Paul Wall, Slim Thug, this one, that one, you know.
Brolin: Staying busy.
Brolin: Right on. What's the story with the DVD? I know you got a DVD coming out.
B.G.: Yeah. Life After Cash Money: The Heart of tha Streetz, man, it's like, a lotta people still be questioning me about Cash Money... When they say my name they still mention Cash Money, and I thought I cleared that up, with [the] My Life After Cash Money album, so evidently the audio wasn't enough, so now I gotta give 'em the visual.
Brolin: Got you. When is that coming out, is that coming out with the album or separately?
B.G.: I ain't gonna put it out with the album 'cause I'm still shootin' it. Like, every time I get footage I just be addin' more and more, it's like a minimovie. It's already like an hour and a half. So I'm just going on and make it a two-hour flick. And it's like the beginning, you know what I'm sayin'? And it look like it don't never want to end. You know what I'm sayin'? It's really not me all through there, I got the streets talkin' on my behalf, you know what I'm sayin'. A lot of people are interviewed and I'm interviewed, and it's just, man, it's going to keep you sittin' there and you gonna want to watch it and you gonna want to know. And I ain't holdin' back nothin' from you, I'm going to give it to you raw and uncut.
Brolin: That sounds good, man. Now there were rumors a little while ago that you were maybe in talks with joining up with G-Unit. Is that in the past, or is there still an offer on the table, or what's up about that?
B.G.: I mean, we talking. You know what I'm sayin', just like I'm talkin' to like, four or five different other labels. So you know, I don't know who I'm leanin' towards--I don't know, I ain't made my decision yet.
Brolin: All right, that's cool. Now, you've been in the game for so long and were such a big part of, like, the South blowing up. How do you feel about the state of rap music right now?
B.G.: How I'm thinkin' about the state of rap music?
Brolin: Yeah, like is it getting better or getting worse? Or what's your take on it?
B.G.: Both. I mean, you know, a lotta s*** I ride to, so a lotta s*** I bump, and a lot of s*** I toss out the window. I'ma be honest with ya. You know, I'm a fan of a lotta s*** and I'm not a fan of a lotta s***, but it's to each his own.
Brolin: Sure, right on. Now that you got your own label, Chopper City, is it tough to balance the business side with the music side, or what?
B.G.: I mean, when it's time to be an artist, I be an artist. When it's time to be a CEO, I be a CEO. I try not to mix 'em up, get lost in the shuffle, you know. It's a headache being a CEO, it's more fun to be an artist.
Brolin: And the artists on your roster--your brother Hakim is in the mix, right?
B.G.: Mm hmm.
Brolin: And then who are these other cats, The Gar and Sniper and Mike, are they all New Orleans?
B.G.: That's my Chopper City Boys.
Brolin: Are they working on solo projects and whatnot?
B.G.: Their group album done already, Chopper City Boys' album's done. Now I'm working on the solo projects, you know, but they stay in the lab, they be in the lab without me. It's like I'm the quarterback, you know. I quarterback 'em, they my riders, they the running backs, they know their position. They hungry. I just try to instill in them, when you be full, you gotta stay hungry.
Brolin: Right on. Now I know you're based out of Detroit now--what's the scene like in Detroit? And do you see yourself staying there? Or do you want to go back to New Orleans eventually?
B.G.: I ain't never left New Orleans, for the record, you know what I'm sayin'. I was already here before the hurricane, like, I had a spot here like, for like--three years I been back and forth. So when that happened, I'm more familiar with here, I'm more stable and more functional here, so I came here and, you know, opened an office here and built a studio here and s***... This always was my second home, you know what I'm sayin'. But man, I'm homesick.
Brolin: Yeah, I hear you. Do you still get to go, I mean are you back in New Orleans often, or have you been--
B.G.: Mm hmm, I'll be in New Orleans Friday.
Brolin: Are things getting better out there?
B.G.: Don't make me go there.
Brolin: OK, that's cool. Now, I know that obviously you and Wayne have had some issues in the past and you guys have a long history together. Is it something--is it at the point where you'd like to you know, sort of sit down and work things out, or are you just not interested in dealing with him at all these days?
B.G.: I mean, at one point in time, after I left, our relationship was beautiful, you know what I'm sayin'? We had an understanding, we was cool, you know. It wasn't him I was after, it was Baby I was after. But, I was sittin' down reading a magazine, I read a couple of magazines and they were like, "Well how you feelin' about everybody leavin' and about you being the only one left from Cash Money?" And he like, "Man, f*** everybody who left Cash Money, I don't respect none of 'em." And when I read that I hit the roof.
Brolin: Yeah, that's no good.
B.G.: So that's where the whole "Trigga Man" thing came from. You know, you say, "f*** me." I got no choice but to say "f*** you," back. You know, but before that it was love, you know--just last year he was screamin' "I miss my dogs." And now all of a sudden it's f*** all us. I mean, I'd of felt better if he'd have said, "Well f*** Fresh 'cause Fresh ain't producin' my album," or "f*** Juve," but he said "f*** everybody who left," and I'm one of the motherf*****s who left.
Brolin: Are you still in touch with Turk at all? Is he holding up OK?
B.G.: Mm hmm. Yeah, he's holding up real good. I talked to Turk this mornin', I talk to Turk damn near every day, I love that n****, man. I hold him down. I'm about the only one that hold him down.
Brolin: What about Juvenile, you guys still cool?
B.G.: Yeah, I saw Juve in New Orleans this week, and we talked, we talk about doing the album together, but I really think it's about to happen now--me, him, and Fresh gonna come together and make it happen.
Brolin: That'll be huge. I just got a couple more questions for you man, and we'll wrap it up. Obviously your phrase "bling bling" became so gigantic that it's in the dictionary now and whatnot. Is that something like, are you proud that you came up with that, or are you kind of bummed that it got so played out and overused by everybody, or indifferent, or what?
B.G.: Sometimes I feel like that. Sometimes I get tired of hearing it, I ain't gonna lie, but then, then it make me feel good about myself, they lettin' me know, like, damn. I ain't gonna say I did that, but we did that. You know what I'm saying, 'cause I mean, it was my song, it was on my album, I had everybody featured on it. Even though the situation is how it is right now, I give all the credit to Mannie Fresh, you know what I'm sayin', me and Mannie Fresh. But I mean, like you say man, it be overused. I wish I had the trademark, then I wouldn't have to be on the phone with you.
Brolin: Yeah, seriously. [Laughs.]
B.G.: You know what I'm sayin'? I could be just like, chillin' man, collecting every time somebody say it, 'cause I was watching The Jamie Foxx Show earlier today [laughs] and he was saying it. I be gettin' on airplanes and s*** man, and [the] stewardess be talkin' about, "Oh, you got nice bling bling on." And I just be laughin' 'cause they don't be knowing me. They don't know who I am. The flight attendant is like an older lady. It's crazy.
Brolin: Now, all these young kids out here today, everybody wants to be a rapper, everybody wants to be a producer, or DJ and get in the game. As somebody who's seen the highs and the lows of the industry over the years, what advice would you give to younger cats trying to get their foot in the door?
B.G.: I mean, follow your heart, you know. If it's for you, it's gonna happen. You put a hundred percent into it, you get a hundred percent out of it. You put fifty percent into it and you get fifty percent out of it, you know. Back then, the market wasn't as flooded as it is now--it's all about self-promotion and just pushing yourself. If that's what you want and that's what you do, follow your heart.
Brolin: Cool. Alright, man. Any last words out there for the fans?
B.G.: I love you, I love all of 'em, keep holding me down. I ain't gonna let you down.
Brolin: Well thanks for taking the time to do this man, I appreciate it.
B.G.: No problem.
Brolin: The single is bangin' and I look forward to the new album for sure.
B.G.: Appreciate that. You got that.
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B.G. - Move Around f/ Mannie Fresh
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