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Fire Starter: Dwele
We normally wouldn't spotlight somebody who has already put out two albums (2003's Subject and 2005's Some Kinda...), but Detroit R&B singer Dwele has been so slept on, he hardly has that established-artist presence. Plus, Kanye West's "Flashing Lights" is a hands-down favorite in the MTV News office, and we hear his voice on the hook every day. He also got shine on Common's "The People" a few months back. He's now off Virgin and shopping new material for another deal. Uh, Kanye, hello!


Mixtape Monday: Kanye West, Beanie Sigel Make Amends, Remix; Nelly Does The Wop For Whodini; Papoose Rebounds From Jive Drop

— by Shaheem Reid, with additional reporting by Rahman Dukes and Brennan Williams

Artist: Papoose

Representing: Brooklyn, New York

Mixtape: Already a Legend

411: Here's what we know: After all the hoopla about getting $1.5 million from Jive, Papoose is off the label. DJ Kay Slay has called out the label several times on his radio show, while our sources (who obviously have asked to remain nameless) say that Slay and Pap may not have been the easiest couple of guys to work with. Go figure. While Pap starts from scratch, he drops his latest mixtape, Already a Legend.

Joints To Check For:

  • "Stylin on You." Sha Money XL produced this record. The slang may be a little dated, but the wordplay is futuristic throughout. Papoose is going after mobsters, test-tube babies (while they're still in the test tube), and aunts and uncles. "I ride the Caddy, you ride the bandwagon," he raps.

  • "Fitted Hat Low." "Show you how to rob the industry like 50 Cent" may be the realest thing Pap ever wrote, if in fact he did get to leave Jive with the $1.5 mil we've been hearing about. Other than that, Pap's kid-friendly ditty isn't too appetizing.

  • "Law Library 4." We can see it now: Papoose guest-stars on "Boston Legal" — not as a stickup kid in need of a swift defense attorney, but as a prosecuting lawyer himself. Can't see it? Pap in a business suit (made by Gino Green Global, of course), standing up against William Shatner? Hollywood never had it so good. If you haven't guessed it from listening to the first three installments of this series, 'Poose knows his legal biz.

Don't Sleep: Other Notable Selections This Week
    Notorious B.I.G.: The Red Album Vol. 2
  • DJ Babe - Legends of Hip Hop Volume One
  • DJ Blazita - New York, New York, We're Back: Part 5
  • Chip Tha Ripper - DJ E-V Presents: Chip Tha Ripper - Money
  • DJ Sane 720 and Dantana - The Notorious B.I.G. Red Album Vol. 2
  • The Cons Vol. 5: Refuse to Die
  • DJ Woogie, Hot Rod and Big Mike - Hot Rod: The Hitman

'Hood's Heavy Rotation: Bubbling Below The Radar
  • 50 Cent - "So Serious"
  • DJ Khaled (featuring T-Pain, Young Jeezy, Ludacris, Busta Rhymes, Big Boi, Lil Wayne, Fat Joe, Rick Ross and Baby) - "I'm So Hood" remix
  • Lil Wayne (featuring Wyclef Jean) - "Operate on Me"
  • Nas - "Surviving the Times"
  • Wu-Tang Clan - "The Heart Gently Weeps"

Celebrity Faves

  Kool Moe Dee
Kool Moe Dee used to lyrically light it up back in the day. Now he's about to do his hip-hop talk-show thing. He plans to host a show called "Spit Fire," which will be like a Bill Maher, "Politically Incorrect"-type thing. "We're reshaping the thought process of how people view hip-hop," he said of the show, adding that it will premiere in June on cable.

Back to the lyrics, Moe Dee says that of today's crop, there are two spitters that stick out: "I like Jadakiss, and Nas is one of the greats of all time. Nas is of the bloodline."

The Streets Is Talking: News & Notes From The Underground

It looks like Nelly is the next superstar thinking about forging a supergroup bond with one or more of his friends. Although he didn't want to go in-depth because of everything that has to be worked out, it looks like he and T.I. have been discussing a project.

"It's definitely being talked about," he smiled on the red carpet of the VH1 Hip Hop Honors on Thursday night. "We're definitely trying to put something together, work on something that could be truly outstanding. I think now people kinda get it. I think people want me to be a certain way because of all the success I had. That's just never been me. I feel real fortunate to sell the amount of records I have, but I like to hang. I don't care if you sold one record and I sold this. I like to kick it. But we're definitely working on something."

When asked again if it would be with T.I. specifically, Nelly said, "Ah, I don't wanna say no names, but Tip is my man. Not just in music."

During the the Hip Hop Honors show, which airs Monday (October 8) at 10 p.m. ET on VH1, you'll see Nelly perform as part of the Whodini tribute. And please believe that Pimp Juice is definitely about his hip-hop. He surprised everyone and did the Wop!

  "I love Whodini. They were one of the first ones to say it all," he explained. "How could you not love Whodini? They said they were freaks. ... They had one love. 'Five Minutes of Funk' — it's incredible. I had a chance to hang out with the guys for rehearsal. They're Whodini! It's gonna be fun."

Another surprise during the show was that Nelly and one-time foe KRS-One had apparently mended fences and were hanging out, just kicking it.

"We were backstage chopping it up," Nelly confirmed with a grin. "[The feud] was a misunderstanding on my part and a rush to prejudge on his. After we both saw the type of thing ... well, I don't wanna say he made a mistake, he's the Teacha. Like I said, if it wasn't for him, I wouldn't be here. ... Maybe we'll do something in the future."

Nelly did do a song with Chuck D for his upcoming Brass Knuckles LP, due October 16. ...

  Beanie Sigel
OK, we can put the blown-outta-proportion Beanie Sigel vs. Kanye West beef to bed for good now. As you've heard, Sig and Freeway recently did vocals for a remix of Kanye's "Can't Tell Me Nothing."

"That ain't no put-together joint," Beanie said. "There's a couple of versions floating around, I heard one with Busta [Rhymes]. But [Kanye] really called to do the joint. So I did it."

He said he still hasn't seen Kanye's now-famous "Smack" DVD response to Beans calling the Louis Vuitton Don gay.

"I heard about it, but I never seen it," Sigel said. "I don't be letting too much sh-- occupy my mind in the course of my day. Every second counts. ... I don't like to keep dwelling on it. That interview — and I don't want to make no excuse — but I gave it about a month after I got out of jail. ... Any little thing, I was venting on. If you would have asked me about any rapper, he was getting it. I was venting at the time."

Sig is almost done with his December release, The Solution, and no, Kanye has not produced any tracks as of yet.

"I doubt if that will happen, unless dude comes and says, 'I got a crazy joint for you and [Jay-Z],' " Sig said. "I don't wanna record no more records unless it's a me-and-Jay song. ... Before the lyrics even get on the track, it has to be monstrous. When you hear it, it has to be like, 'Oh my God.' If we get that joint off, that'll be the only other record I would want for my album." ...

A Hot Boys reunion in 2008? Lil Wayne announced it a few weeks ago, and last week B.G. confirmed it. Gizzle says it's still in the talking stages and business has to be worked out, but he's down.

"We was Hot Boys then, now we Hot Men," B.G. explained. "We all went our separate ways and proved we can stand on our own — Lil Wayne, B.G., Juvenile. And Turk is coming [out of jail] soon. We're all relevant. I know the streets have been demanding it. They wanted it. I did a vote, went out in the public and asked. They're condoning me, pushing me to do it. Why not give it to them? Hip-hop could appreciate it right now. Why not?"

Well, one major why-not would be the question of which label the LP comes out on. B.G. and Juvenile are signed to Atlantic, while Wayne is on Cash Money. B.G. and Juvi have vowed to never to do business with Cash Money CEO Baby again.

"Nah, like I said, man, we all pretty much outgrew the situation," B.G. contended about being on Cash Money. "We'll find out the ins and outs of the game. If anything, it'll be [released by] Universal/Atlantic."

B.G.'s next solo LP, Too Hood to Be Hollywood, drops February 5 and features production from Mannie Fresh, Cool & Dre and Scott Storch. Storch produced the first single, which features T.I.

Hungry for more hip-hop coverage? Sink your teeth into our "Hottest MCs in the Game" feature.

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

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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