Your new mixtape is coming out soon. How much longer do we have to wait for it?
Oh, man, you’re about to get a couple things, man. I got a couple things brewing with a lot of DJs too. I got a couple DJs going in with me on a couple mixtapes. I’m showing that I’m universal. I don’t want them to think that just because I’m down with Slay that Slay and I don’t see eye to eye with other DJs. I fuck with anybody as they support us. We’re moving with everybody. I definitely have a couple of crazy joints about to drop. You will definitely hear this shit. That shit is on its way. I would say the first one will be here in about a month and y’all will be getting that exclusively on HipHopGame first!
Sounds like a plan. Whenever an artist says they want to go universal, that’s usually code for selling out and making horrible music. You saying you’re going universal kind of has me worried right now. Should I be?
Hell no! (laughs) My music can never sell out. My music is too universal. If I do a radio track or whatever, you best believe it’s going to always round itself off either with the lyrics or something. I’ve been around and I’m always going to send a message. I got a single about to pop off with a video soon that I’m about to shoot y’all’s way and it’s straight radio all day. And hopefully it’s going to get pushed the best way that it can but I’m definitely going to make a statement. As long as I can make a statement I’m going to open these motherfucker’s eyes. And I can never sell out. What is a sellout nowadays anyways? You definitely ain’t gotta worry. I’m on my game now and I’m coming hard with it, man. It’s gonna be crazy.
How important is it to you to work with other DJs besides DJ Kay Slay?
I’m looking to work with other cats. They have to bring real substance to the table. I was talking with Statik Selektah. I told him I would like to get something in with him. We’re all busy right now but we’re trying to work the best way we can around it. I talked to DJ On Point so we’re trying to lock that in. And I already finished something with DJ Rhude. We’re about to drop that soon.
The DJs that I’m mentioning, they’re just hip-hop. They’re hip-hop and they know where I come from and I think that once we mix them elements, all you can make is crack, man. I just want to start something that nobody has ever done. And shout out to DJ Camilo. I even had to holla at Camilo and me and him are doing something. So they’re just going to know that I’m on my motherfucking grind, man.
I ain’t got no enemies or nothing. I’m trying to make good music and get it around and fuck with as many good DJs as I can to let them know that there’s no hating or nothing. Just because I’m with Slay doesn’t mean I can’t work with no other DJs. I got a lot of love for the DJs that came up in the game and came up hard. That’s what it is.
Are you happy with how things have been moving for you with Kay Slay and Streetsweepers?
At this point it is what it is. Things are a little bit shaky right now, you feel me? I’m going through some things with some lawsuits but it’s also looking beautiful for us right now. Once we nip that in the bud everything should be good. Me and Slay, I guess we’re trying to work something out. You would never hear me say nothing bad about Slay. Frustrated? Yeah, I am. I’m frustrated but what artist ain’t frustrated? I just feel as though when an artist comes out and starts making noise the way I started making noise and started placing his mark, I just think I should be getting paid more attention to.
If you’re going to give me a chance, let me prove that I can do what I can do. Let me prove myself too. I’ve been loyal and I continue to be loyal. But I would never say nothing bad about Streetsweepers. We’re going through a little something but my thing is that hopefully we will overcome this and if it’s all good it is and if it’s not it’s not. If we gotta sit down and go our different ways, I always believed we would come to an agreement and shake hands.
And if we decide to take another route and I feel it and he’s going to give me that 100%, then we’ll work through it and honestly, I’m a loyal dude. I want to ride with the niggas that I started with until the end but at the same time I don’t want to be a loyal idiot and be sitting on the backburner and be overshadowed by anybody. At the same time I gotta get my shot.
Why is it taking so long for you to get attention when you’ve gotten such positive response to stuff you’ve done on your own?
I don’t know. I really don’t know. Honestly, man, a lot of the muscle came from me. I did a lot of this shit on the muscle. I’m getting around and I touched base with a lot of cats. I’ showing that I’m an aggressive dude. I’ll go out there and get it. Slay told me to see him halfway and I’ve seen him 80% of the way so far. And I move aggressive. I don’t think me moving aggressive should turn anybody off. It should make them say, “Damn, let me really push this thing.”
But Slay has a lot of things on the table and I know he has a thousand things going for him and I try to build with him, but at the same time you gotta put me in that shit too. I believe he will come around and he will do what he said he would do for me because I believe I can take it to another level, B. Put it like that.
I know I can do that dude on BET getting awards and shit because I come from different angles, man. You gotta let me get that shot but if he doesn’t let me get that shot, that’s cool. He’s still the big homie. I would never say nothing bad about him. That’s my man. But at the same time I want a fair shot at what I deserve. If I can’t get a fair shot you’re not going to see me saying “Fuck Kay Slay.” Big Lou is going to keep pushing until I get there.
Have you and Kay Slay mapped out a plan for your career?
Nah. We haven’t talked about nothing yet. Hopefully we get to that soon and see the direction that it’s going to be going and see where I stand with the whole thing. And hopefully when we finally get to sit down and talk, hopefully it will be a good talk and we get to see eye to eye and shit and keep pushing forward, man.
I have to admit it’s kind of weird seeing you and Papoose both on Streetsweepers and never working together.
Honestly, man, I don’t know. I met him a couple of times, probably four or five times. When we meet each other it’s all love. I show love and he shows love back but we never, like, kicked it. I don’t know Pap that good. Me and Pap never really sat down and got to know each other as person to person. So, you know, I kind of didn’t feel that shit because if we’re on the same team and you see how I reached out to you and left you a message and we’re on the same team, you should be able to call me back and see what’s good.
After I called him twice or three times, he didn’t get back to me and I didn’t take it as nothing but I wasn’t going to keep calling the nigga. I just kept it simple and kept doing what Lou was doing. Pap is doing what he do and I guess he’s busy but at the same time he’s on my team and I’m not going to say he’s on some bullshit because the nigga was probably doing something, but me being a labelmate, I think you should reach out to your labelmate and build a bond and learn how to build as a family. At least that’s where I come from. When you ride for a nigga you ride. I big Streetsweepers up to the fullest and people in the industry know that I’m a loyal motherfucker. They know that I ride for my squad but they also see the funny shit. It is what it is.
Regardless I still big up Pap. I still big up my teammate and shit. He never came at me sideways and he never showed me no disrespect in my face and nothing like that. As long as that was good I always respected hi, like a man because he always respected me like a man. That was it.
Were you happy with the response you got to “On Them Corners”?
That was some street shit. That wasn’t like my first single. The response I got from that was crazy. I got a good response. I got a thousand emails because cats were like, ‘My nigga, I can hear you on the radio all day without selling out just doing catchy shit that people can rock to or party to or just fucking drive to.’ I can do that music all day, B. That’s why I said I’m ready. I’m ready. I’m ready for the world. And that’s how I’m going to keep on moving, man. I got a crazy response from it. It was good. Shout out to all the fans that loved it and all then niggas that loved it and sent me crazy comments and all the DJs. I got a helluva response from it but that wasn’t even the single. But it was love. It was a good response though.
Are songs like “Sugar Water”, where you document the struggle and your grind, you favorite songs to make?
“Sugar Water”, I love making songs like that. I should add onto that. That song is probably a HipHopGame record. That shit got 37 5’s on it. Somebody brought that shit to my attention. Nobody rated it under except for the last hater. Thanks for the hate! (laughs) That song got love. It was crazy, definitely. Those are definitely the types of songs I love to make because you can feel that shit. That’s what I come from.
How do you put a song like “Sugar Water” together?
I mean, I focus on every song I make. I just try and get there. Like “Crackhead”, I just try and be in that scene. I try and live that out. When I do shit like “Sugar Water”, I just think about it. I damn-near think about when I was shooting on the raggedy courts. It’s almost like you close your eyes and get in the zone and start writing. That’s how I approach every song. I just try to really feel every fucking song out and act like I’m there. But you know, instead of painting a picture I’m trying to write a movie and shit.
Kay Slay is known for making the mixtapes and playing exclusive freestyles on the radio, but it seems like you’re much more comfortable making songs that can stand the test of time.
I think I approach it like that because I want to make a statement. I think if I would have done a million freestyles and shit like that then people would have taken me a different way. I didn’t want people to take me that way. I wanted people to know from the fucking door that I can make hits. I wanted to make shit that they can feel for a long time like “Crackhead” and “Stop Hittin’ Me’. People that are 16 can feel those songs for a long time rather than making songs for a mixtape that are freestyles and all that bullshit. You know, you gotta have some substance, man and I definitely wanted to bring some substance and make a mark and let them know that I’m worth hearing.
Cats like freestyles but let’s be serious, B, how many cats put on a fucking CD and they heard that same beat a motherfucker already rapped to? They’re not going to want to hear that all the time. I like doing original beats and original stories, classical shit that they’re going to remember for a long time. I want to do that.
A lot of artists say “I’m saving my real music for my album” and “You can get to know me on my official album.” Why are you letting people into your head for free now?
Because I’m an MC. I feel that I’m the most creative motherfucker alive. A real MC never runs out of ideas. I just feel as though I got so much in the tank. Believe it or not, B, I got a lot of shit in the stash that when, if it gets to the point of the album, trust me, I got a million album joints done. When it gets to that point they’re going to be like, ‘Oh, my God, this nigga has so much shit!’ They’re not going to believe it, man. I come from left field all the time and you know this. I got some left field shit that’s going to really fuck some niggas up. They’re going to be like, ‘This nigga don’t stop.’ I’m just an MC, man. I don’t know if niggas know the meaning of that anymore. But I am an MC. I’m the meaning of a true MC. I’ll fucking put everything out. I don’t give a fuck. I’m going to keep on doing something. Tomorrow is going to be something else.
Is there anyone in the game that you don’t think you could go song for song with?
I’ll go song to song with anybody. Song for song. I’m confident in myself. Some of the songs you heard me collaborate on, I laid my verse first and gave it to them. I didn’t care if they used parts of my verses and some of them couldn’t even get with it. That goes to show that I don’t fear nothing as far as getting on a track with nobody. I don’t fear nothing. When I get on a track with you I don’t give a fuck if you’re a legend. I’m trying to motherfucking go in. And then after we do the session then we’re going to talk about it. (laughs)
The nigga that made me do that was Busta Rhymes. When he invited me to do “The Shining” I was worried about paying homage to Busta and Busta went the fuck in on me. (laughs) And Bus made me open my eyes like, ‘Yo, nigga, I’m Busta Bus. You ain’t doing that shit with me! (laughs) Bus inspired me to go in on everybody. Bus just went crazy on the joint and that inspired me. Regardless of how much you respect and pay homage to these cats, when it comes to getting on the track with them, handle your business. Shout out to Bus. If it wasn’t for him putting that bug up my ass on “The Shining” and letting me know that I gotta go in on everything I do, I wouldn’t be here now and that’s why I go in on everything, man.
Do you ever think you can run out of material?
I can’t! I can’t. I don’t know, man. I still feel like a kid in a candy store, man. Ideas just pop in my head. I just think I’m abnormal as fuck, my nigga because I’m going to talk about shit that your regular MC don’t talk about. I think I proved that point. I got cats thinking now. I got cats that send me emails that are like, ‘Damn, nigga, you got me trying to come up with some crazy shit’ but a lot of those niggas can’t go there because at the beginning of their careers they should have kept it real with themselves.
I always kept it real. I was that dude where if I was broke I was broke and if I got money, I’m not going to talk about it. I just got money. If you try to holla at a chick and you got a boogie in your nose, I’m going to tell you to take that boogie out your nose! (laughs) I’ve always been a real dude and I can talk about some painful shit or some happy shit or some loving shit. I got a crazy song that we’re shooting a video to called “Hug” and it’s just talking about how much a hug means. I got this crazy shit! I can never run out of material because you live something every day in life and that’s how I live – with my rhyme style. I’ll make a rhyme style off of every new shit I live in my life. I can never run out of ideas, man. That’s just me.
Where did the inspiration come from for “Destiny’s Life”?
Oh, man. I kind of pieced it all together. I read a lot. So me reading a lot, I always wanted to tell certain stories and shit. I don’t like taking a story that I read and making it into a rhyme. I try and get more crazy with it and try and put it in my own perspective. And the ideas were just flowing wide. I’m actually writing the song and the ideas were just floating in. It was crazy. It just came out the way it came out. We’re also shooting a video to that, man. I shoot a lot of videos because I want to give cats the visual because a lot of my rhymes, you can visualize them when you hear them. I always do a lot of videos because that’s the angle I want to hit cats with.
But “Destiny’s Life” just came from reading and from certain things that happened in real life. And I just put it in my own perspective but what I’m aiming for is just to give knowledge to the parents and the young girls about the shit that goes on in everyday life.
Did you see a lot of the things you rhyme about firsthand growing up in Camden?
Yeah. I came from that. Before my dad abandoned me, I’m an abandoned child. My dad left me when I was a little boy. I saw my dad fuck my mom up. I saw my dad hit my mom. I saw my dad rape my mom. I was in the bed next to it and I saw that. I’m not ashamed to say that shit. I’m real with it. That’s just the facts. I lived up in that struggle. I lived in that. I saw motherfuckers fall into my crib from getting shot the fuck up and getting shanked. I saw all of that and all of these things growing up in my ‘hood. When you go through so much shit and you want to unleash that pain, the way for me to release my pain was through writing songs and I guess that’s how I became an ill storyteller.
You paid tribute to your late grandmother on “Harsh Reality”. Was that a hard song for you to write?
Yeah. My grandma was an inspiration in my life. My grandma was there when my punk-ass dad wasn’t. My grandma was there helping Mom raise seven of us. We was deep. All the memories of her when you fell and her healing your scars and her making that food for you…We didn’t have much but she could boil those rice and beans until they tasted like steak and lobster! You just remember all of those things and how this lady was there for me her whole life and with her passing, you definitely feel that pain and I know other cats went through that. There are a lot of other people that went through that situation and I’m not only trying to heal my pain but I’m trying to heal theirs'. If they can hear that song on their CD player and it can bring a smile to their face, that can take away some of that pain that we go through.
Do you have fans coming up to you telling you how much your songs affect them?
All the time. All the time. People actually came to me crying from “Stop Hittin’ Me””. Ladies came to me with tears to their eyes because they were in that situation and I helped them take action stronger and lift their head up. I had people on MySpace and in the streets talking about “Crackhead”. A young kid, like 18 years-old, hit me on MySpace and told me he used to be a crackhead. 18 years-old! He was a crackhead and he said I made him go to rehab. His brother played the song for him and he straightened up. The response has been crazy. Shout out to al them people that felt those songs and shout out to all the people that gave me love. Really, they deserve all the credit because they actually have to live through that shit and be big enough to fix their lives. So shout out to everybody that showed love on that shit.
The big question after you dropped all these great songs is why don’t you have an album coming out?
That’s what I’m pushing for now. I’ve been with Streetsweepers for almost two years now. I just feel as though I’m ready. I’m ready. I showed my loyalty. I showed more than loyalty. I showed that I can be one of them dudes in the game.
I’ve done proved myself time and time again. And I’m just hoping that big homie Kay Slay will finally come to the table and we can talk and he’ll know that I’m that dude to push. And if he don’t and even if he don’t want to fuck with me I’m always going to respect that man, no doubt. I’m going to keep on moving too. I’m going to keep on doing what Big Lou has to do. I’m going to keep on opening doors until more people realize that we gotta expose this nigga to the world because this nigga is special in his own way.
I’m not the typical MC, man. I got many angles, man, and you don’t see MCs like that today, man. Two years, three years from now, you’re going to see me getting awards onstage in front of an audience. Niggas are going to see me on the fucking screen on award shows because I can do joints like that. I’m just waiting, still patiently, man, and seeing what’s going to happen, B. That’s all I can do.