Whether standing up in defiance of an order or squaring off in sports, there comes a time in a boy's life when he has to test his dad. In late December, Percy Miller found himself squaring off against none other than Percy Miller.
"Just look at the net, don't look at me," said the elder of the two combatants, better known as Master P. At Lil' Romeo's home in Houston, the Millers had been playing basketball for a few hours, and experience was winning over youth.
"Don't miss no more," P yelled to his son as he looked at the 12-year-old's brick shot. When Lil' Romeo tried to redeem himself by going in for a layup, his dad blocked the shot. "I don't care if he is a 'little' Romeo, I'm 'a knock it over the fence."
The competitiveness is strictly on the court, though, said Romeo, who dreams of being an NBA star. He and his dad are a team. Although the youngster said he's been writing most of the rhymes for his upcoming sophomore LP, Game Time, on his own, he admitted that he still gets help from his big papa every now and then.
"It's just a lot of fun to know that I have writing skills to write my own album," Romeo said with a smile. "And my dad writes with me, so me and him go back and forth writing and making hits. I really know what to do and what not to do on this album. I know how to make it better, and I'm just making music for the fans and positive music so everybody can listen to and have fun and dance off of it."
Romeo is hoping one of the album's songs, "We Can Make It Right," both inspires and consoles. Sampling the same "It's the Hard-Knock Life" Broadway tune Jay-Z used in 1998, Romeo steps in and raps, "To the people when the World Trade hit the floor/ And all the soldiers in the pen, God bless y'all." On the chorus, he sings, "We can make it right," using the same melody as Annie and the rest of the orphans did on their hook.
"I made that right after I saw the [tragedy] in New York," said Romeo, who was at a photo shoot when the attacks occurred. "I was two blocks away from that. We did [the song] like the next week. It was a good song for a new single, and it just turned out great. We wanted to do this song for all the loved ones that were lost out there."
Romeo is in talks with quartet B2K to appear on his album, due in June, and his dad said fans shouldn't be surprised if they hear the preteen rapping over beats by Dr. Dre and Timbaland.