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— Shaheem Reid, with additional reporting by Rahman Dukes

Artist: Ludacris

Representing: Disturbing Tha Peace

Mixtape: Pre-Release Therapy

411: We're not going to bog down your eyes singing too many Luda praises. 'Cris' new album Release Therapy is nuts ("Runaway Love" with Mary J. and "Slap" are definite standouts), and here he teams up with Green Lantern for a rare mixtape. Believe it or not, it's not just Green taking some Luda verses and putting his special production twist on them. Luda got his butt in the booth and recorded a gaggle of new material specifically for this street CD. You gotta applaud him for following Hell Rell's route and rapping over the theme for "He-Man." He goes in!

On the second CD in this set, Michael "5000" Watts screws and chops the whole thing. Speaking of Watts, he just did Korn a solid and screwed and chopped the group's album See You on the Other Side.

Joints To Check For:

  • "I'm the Truth." Over a beat from Dre (of Cool & Dre, that is) 'Cris claims to be the first guy to put a vocal booth in his SUV. To stunt even further, his car throws gang signs. When you have as many different bank accounts stacked with ones as the Mouth of the South does, you can afford to pimp your ride to the fullest. "Ludacris, n---a, don't get it twisted ho," he raps. "Your money's short, mine is standing on its tippy toes ... I'm like Picasso on the mic, get the f---in' picture."

  • "You Don't Know." The energetic swagger is in abundance from the onset. "It's Ludacris, I'll power bomb that ass like Kevin Nash," he declares. "Broadcast your funeral like a news flash ... And you ain't grown, just 'cause it's milk on your mustache."

  • "Shakedown." A track with an original Neptunes beat on a mixtape? That's really stuntin' huh? It's a party track, but Luda really uses the opportunity to show why he's one of the kings of punch lines. There's a line on there you have to listen to a couple of times. It might be a subliminal jab at former DTP member Chingy. Write into You Tell Us and let us know what you think.

    Don't Sleep: Other Notable Selections This Week
    • Don Cannon, Jermaine Dupri and T. Waters - 40 Days 40 Nights
    • DJ Wreck - The Apprentice
    • DJ Simon Sez & DJ Set It Off - Dungeon Immortal: The Thug Below
    • Yorel - Tears That Never Dried
    • DJ Arkane - Cashis
    • Big Mike & Evil Empire (hosted by Lil Wayne and Jim Jones) - Interstate Trafficking 30
    • Black-Ty a.k.a Tyrese (hosted by DJ S&S) - Ghetto Royalty

    Click here for more of Mixtape Monday ...

    'Hood's Heavy Rotation: Bubbling Below The Radar
    • "Help" - Lloyd Banks
    • "How Do I Breathe" - Mario
    • "All Night Long" - Robin Thicke featuring Lil Wayne
    • "Damn N---a Damn" - UTP
    • "Raised in the Projects" - Project Pat featuring Chrome
    • "Strip Club" - Game

    Celebrity Faves

      Kobe Bryant
    When Lil Wayne gets onstage this week as the Up Close and Personal Tour hits L.A., he'll be wearing some very special gear. A $5,000 belt buckle? No. Stunna shades, fresh from Italy? Nah. He's going to be wearing Kobe Bryant's new number 24 Los Angeles Lakers jersey. Besides Bryant, Wayne is the only person on earth who has one. "When Kobe heard about the concert, he reached out to me 'cause he's a fan of my music and I'm a fan of his skills on the court," Weezy F. Baby said of Bryant, formerly number 8. "He said he wanted me to be the first to represent his new jersey, number 24, and I was with it!"

    The Streets Is Talking: News & Notes From The Underground

      Young Jeezy
    Young Jeezy says he's giving the middle finger to the sophomore jinx. He insists he overcame that a long time ago. You see, his December 5 release The Inspiration: Thug Motivation 102 is officially his second album, but the Snowman says he considers it LP number five.

    "You really just look back and look at my track record. Streets Is Watching did 200,000," he said, factoring how many units his mixtapes sold on the streets. "Trap or Die probably did half a million. Can't Ban the Snowman probably did another 250,000. I came out, did 2 million on my album [Let's Get It: Thug Motivation 101]. At the end of the day, that's like four albums. So right now I'm workin' on my fifth album in my mind. So I'mma be a little more advanced than people really think I am.

    "At the end of the day, I wanna say it's my best work," he continued, giving a guarantee about The Inspiration's quality. "It's tight work. I'mma take it back to mixtape days, Streets Is Watching, homie. That's when it was raw and uncut. But now, I'm a little bit better at what I do. And I like what I do now. The Inspiration is there."

    Jeezy's first single is "I Love," which is produced by DJ Toomp. Other production notables include Cool & Dre, while Young Buck is just one of the guests on the mic.

    "I didn't do a lot of features," he said, before launching into a laundry list of them. "I kicked it with Three 6, Project Pat, it was crazy, I just had to work with them. I did a joint with Keyshia Cole. It's a crazy joint, real deep you know. If you listen to it, try not to cry. Keep it gangsta. Definitely Snoop. Me and Tip did one. Definitely Slick Pulla and BloodRaw. That was pretty much it. I pretty much wanted to keep it me."

    When he wasn't working on his album the past several months, the perennial trapper of the year has been sculpting his body. "I had been workin' on my weight," he admitted. "I lost, like, 35 pounds. Got my six-pack on, nahmean? I always promised myself when I got myself established I was gonna get my stuff together, man. 'Cause shows'll kill you, dude. You onstage for an hour, can't breathe ..." ..."

      Freddie Foxxx
    Someone is getting ready to do the absolutely unthinkable: call Rakim out on a record by name. It's not going to be anything like the subliminal sparring that was rumored to be going on between Rakim and Big Daddy Kane in the '80s. This person is going to dis the God, one of the greatest MCs ever. Who has enough courage to do so? None other than Mr. Fearless himself, Freddie Foxxx a.k.a. Bumpy Knuckles. The song is called "The King Is Down" and appears on his new LP, Amerikkkan Black Man.

    "I will eat Rakim's ass alive on any record, any stage," Bumpy Knuckles asserted recently. "When I finish with him, every bit of legendary status he had is gonna go out the window. I swear on everything I stand on, I will eat that n---a alive, bar by bar. I'll tell him to his mutha----in' face."

    So now you're gasping for air, and wondering why Freddie — a legendary hip-hop figure in his own right, who's earned respect for street pedigree as well as rap skills — is going at Ra. Well according to Foxxx, it goes back to the '80s in Wyandanch, New York, where Foxxx's rap team Supreme Force used to be competitive with Ra's team the Love Brothers. This was pre-Eric B. and Rakim.

    "We got a history, you know. We got a real long history," Foxxx explained. "We from the same part of town. Ra has always had an attitude towards me that he was better than me — on the mic and more successful. How dare he think he can out-rhyme me. He has one style, that's all he's ever had."

    What really got Foxxx upset, he said, was a Q&A with Rakim he read on hip-hop Web site Halftime Online. Rakim was asked about a battle that supposedly took place back in the day between the Love Brothers and Supreme Force squad.

    "I never f---ing turned down a battle with that mutha----er!" Rakim is quoted as saying. Foxxx, you can front on the whole world, but you not fronting on me, n---a. ... Foxxx wasn't ferocious like that. Foxxx had two other cats that used to rhyme with him. They were a good group, but Foxxx wasn't ferocious like that baby pa."

    "I read the article and it set me off," Foxxx said. "He said I'm 'not ferocious.' How dare he? His ego kicked in. I said I'm gonna let the world who he really is. People are only calling him a legend because of what he did with Eric B. Everything after that was wack. Nobody will say it to his face."

    Foxxx said he's not sure when the dis record will be coming out, but his LP is slated for sometime in February. WWE champion John Cena and Talib Kweli rap on a record called "Give it to the A&R," while the Alchemist, Pete Rock, DJ Scratch and DJ Premier produced a myriad of the records.

    "I'm too old to be chasing publicity," Foxxx said when asked if he really has a legitimate gripe with Rakim or if he's just doing it for hype for his album. "I don't need the publicity. I ain't no hater. But when I see he's so quick to always shoot me in the foot, enough is enough. Why would I want to get recognition on Rakim? He's nothing to me. Y'all see him differently than I do. On the song, I never called his name. We used to call him 'Pop' back in the day. I don't call him 'Rakim' on the record, I call him 'Pop.' "

    Bumpy Knuckles also said he dares Rakim to come back at him on wax. "Turn your mic on, B," he said defiantly. "I want him to put me in my place."

    Rakim is on tour and could not be reached for comment.

    And finally, Green Lantern is still on tour with Jay-Z and wrote in to tell us what it's liked to trot the globe with Hova. Here are his latest reports:

      Green Lantern in Manchseter
    September 16: Amsterdam, Netherlands
    Amsterdam, baby!! It's real foggy in this room as I write this ... They say this is the most diverse city in the world, and I believe them! ... Anyway, the show was the best one yet. Crowd went crazy for every song. It's breaking records on YouTube, I hear. Me, Bleek and Hov hit the casino after the show and got busyyy!! Everybody won, even me, and I don't gamble much. Check for "Live From Amsterdam" featuring Bleek. Recorded at the hotel with a girl from the streets of Amsterdam on the hook. Green out.

    September 21: Manchester, England
    "Manchester, U.K., what the f--- is uuup!!" I know I keep saying this, but this was the best show yet! They just keep gettin' crazier and crazier. The sold-out crowd of 15,000 screaming Hov fans was ready tonight and they got the show of the year. I'll bet the house on that one. From the warm-up set, where I run thru Jay songs to get them hype, to the last encore, Manchester was rockin' tonight! The special treat was Jay doin' "Is That Yo Bitch?"over a local U.K. hit called "Pow." ... The whole place erupted! See y'all in Glasgow, Scotland. - Green

    Click here to follow Jay-Z on his Water for Life Tour, as he travels the world and addresses the global water crisis.

    For a full-length feature on the role of mixtapes in the music industry, check out "Mixtapes: The Other Music Industry."

    For other artists featured in Mixtape Mondays, check out Mixtape Mondays Headlines

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Photo: MTV News

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