Written By Archie Fucque
In this week’s Pulse Report the streets are buzzing over Jay-Z's comments about Kanye West, 50 Cent planning to go into semi-retirement like Eminem & Dr. Dre, The Game spending quality time with Joe Budden, and Kim Osorio responding to Benzino’s latest attacks.
[Editor Note: The views of this column do not necessarily reflect those of SOHH.com]
1. Oh Brother. It appears that Kanye West still has a ways to go in his quest to impress “big brother” Jay-Z. For all the platinum plus albums, hit records, and "Jockin’ Jay-Z" anthems Hov is still not ready to credit little bro with his level of success. The Brooklyn MC was selected by Timeout New York magazine as one of their “New York 40.” During a sit down with the mag Jay was asked about other potential selections—Nas and Kanye West—for the exclusive list. Here’s what he said:
You’re the only rapper on this list. We were considering Nas but have this 13-year rule: People on this list had to have had an impact in the last 13 years. And Illmatic was 1994. Should we have included him?
Jay-Z: Ah, wow! [Laughs] That’s a tough question. [Pauses] Yeah, only because of the impact of that album, when it’s considered one of the best albums ever created, you have to document that.
How about Kanye? Has he earned it yet?
Jay-Z: He’s from Chicago, but he’s close. I don’t know if he’s had that one album that’s moved the entire culture, but he’s hit it three times in a row. He’ll be on every list one day.
Hmmm. One must call into question the way that Kanye question was answered. Not to play dime store psychologist here, but there were some telling points made in that response. Let’s just say the spidey senses where on “hi hater” alert immediately.
First, starting of “He’s from Chicago” already tells us that you are looking for a reason to keep him off the list. If you check the cover of the magazine, which Jay-Z shares with several other celebs, there are quite a few folks who are not native New Yorkers. Namely Derek Jeter of Kalamazoo, Michigan and Tina Fey of Upper Darby, Pennsylvania. So that shouldn’t even be an issue.
Second, “I don’t know if he’s had that one album that’s moved the entire culture”.
Translation: He hasn’t made a classic album.
There might be some that argue he has. I am one of those that say College Dropout is classic. Let the debate begin. Also let’s put Jay’s first three albums up against Kanye’s first three. I’ll argue that Kanye’s done more in his first three to move the entire culture than Jay did in his first three.
2. Terminate On Spite. Turns out 50 Cent is finally going to make good on his promise to leave the rap game after losing the sales war to Kanye West. Well sort of. According to thisis50.com, the heavyweight MC is planning to step away from the rap game a la Eminem and Dr. Dre after the release of his forth-coming album Before I Self Destruct.
"The luxury that Eminem and Dr. Dre have now, I'll soon have," he said. "I'll only be putting out music when I have a masterpiece ready… those guys are ready to put out their masterpieces very soon. Eminem's album is going to blow people away... Like him, I'll only be coming back when people miss me."
Whoa. So let me get this straight, the future of 50 Cent’s rap career will hinge on whether hip-hop fans miss him when he’s gone. How will he know when he’s missed? Do we have to sign a “50 come back” petition? Hold rallies outside the G-Unit office hoisting “We Want Change” signs. This sounds like the beginning stages of another marketing scheme. I don’t know if I’d go this route until I saw how much fans actually miss Marshall. If Em doesn’t get back to where he once was, then Fif may have to go back to the original marketing scam of beef, beatdowns and SoundScan showdowns.
3. Friend Or Foe? Speaking of 50’s penchant for beef, two of his adversaries The Game and Joe Budden seem to be forging quite the relationship. Since squashing their differences at a summer concert in New York the former enemies are blossoming into BFFs right before our eyes. In a recent clip shot by Amalgam Digital (Budden's record label) the two rappers are seen in an undisclosed hood in Cali were they talk trash to no one in particular, while teasing the prospect of a possible collaboration. [Watch here]
”Don’t be mad at this n*gga," warned Game. “And if you are mad at it do a YouTube or something, put out a mixtape so I can shut your whole shit down.”
Joe on the other hand warned against YouTube shenanigans.
”Don’t play with me on YouTube," he said. "I’ll tear one of you n*ggas a new asshole. Don’t put my name in any of your videos.”
Look, I’m all for my brothers coming together, but I see this relationship exploding within the next six months. I can’t see these two volatile personalities meshing in harmony for too long. We all know Game’s history with calling a truce. Plus dude is probably the most bi-polar rapper out. I can see his Dr Jekyll/Mr. Hyde acting irritating the hell out of Budden. But until D-Day I hope they can make some incredible music together.
4. Source Of Disagreement. Though "The Hip-Hop Bible," Source magazine, is functioning on its last legs, its ex-staffers continue to wage holy war against one another. Former co-owner Ray Benzino and ex editor-in-chief Kim Osorio continue to exchange harsh words over Osorio’s recent book Straight From The Source: An Expose From The Former Editor in Chief Of The Hip-Hop Bible.
In an interview with Kendra G, Benzino, who mockingly referred to Osorio as “O-Sorry-Hoe,” called the journalist a disloyal employee who used her position to bed famous rappers, 50 Cent and Nas. [Listen here]
Osorio responded during an interview with Guerilla Busfare radio, referring to Benzino as a “clown” who’s out of touch with reality. [Listen Here]
I’m not about get into the whole battle of the sexes/sexism thing here. That’s an episode of the Tyra Banks show. I say office booty is fair game for everyone. Furthermore, if the parameters of your office extend beyond the actual office space to an indefinite area, entailing that sex with celebrities is potentially yours for the taking, I say go for it.
Lost in all the squabbling was Benzino’s desire to put out another album. Lord no! Mr. Zino, may I propose you go away until we miss you. I’ve been told it works for some rappers.
5. Ladies Of Rage. Freestyle battles can be rather entertaining, but when it turns into a near bare knuckles street fight it can be quite disturbing. Even more distressing is when the contestants are women. During the taping of a recent battle between Lady Luck and "Miss Rap Supreme," Rece Steele, things got pretty heated between the two femcees. Crews from both parties had to be separated. And get this; it was only the warm up to their big showdown tomorrow night. [Watch here]
WTF? Is it safe to say there was way too much testosterone in that room? If you plan on checking the ladies clash for $20,000 I suggest you bring you body armor. Things can turn into an episode of "Oz" real quick like up in that piece.
That’s all from me folks. Oh and one quick thing. I’ve been having some technical difficulty with my email lately. The wifi connection in these Afghan mountains suck. I haven’t been able to get my response to all your emails in a timely manner. I apologize for that. Trust that I’ve been reading every last one. This week the problem should be fixed so hit me up at firstname.lastname@example.org for a healthy back and forth. I know Jay-Z/Kanye will be a hot button issue. Plus, I want to know who’ll miss 50 when he’s gone.
It’s not too late to nominate your favorite artists, bloggers or even yourself for an Online Hip-Hop Award. State your bid here.