Jadakiss is about as bland as steak with no seasoning salt. He's just sitting there, spitting his bars of death with little more animation than a corpse. Part of it is because he's playing the role of a funeral attendee in his new video for "Time's Up," the other reason is that Jada just doesn't feel like himself.
"I can't get it with this suit on, I ain't Kiss right now. I'm just Jason," he lamented to director Chris Robinson during a break in the action. "I can't move anyways, you told me to stay still."
Jada, Robinson, the track's guest star, Nate Dogg, and the video's guest star, actor Bokeem Woodbine ("3000 Miles to Graceland"), have been filming in and around a New Orleans mortuary all day, and Kiss is visibly not feeling the vibe. After a few more takes in the funeral parlor, Jada gets a little more lively.
"I'm the fella with the perpetual oyster bars ...," he raps, sitting down in his black pinstripe suit. "When I spit, everybody gotta split like pepper spray."
Later, in his trailer, Jada is still a little down but finds humor in his situation.
"I have no idea," he jokes when asked what the video's concept is. "I really don't, though. Videos is the worst. Let me make it clear: Videos suck. It sucks making a video. It's happy when it's over and edited and online, but making it, it ain't really too much fun. The pants is always too big or tight. There's always something missing. That's just part of being an artist. Who said being an artist was easy? It comes with the game."
As the sun retracted back into the sky and night came down, Kiss began to love the game again. He loosened up while shooting a performance scene outside.
"You've been mad at me all day," a smiling Robinson chuckled with Jada and the film crew, while Kiss had his arm around him, grinning ear-to-ear.
"Naaahhh, I wasn't mad at you, I was mad at the material," Jada answered, showing his signature dimples. "Sh-- looks crazy, kid. I was almost nervous. I'm back."
Jada was so enthused he even gave the cameraman a high-five.
"It's like a Creole funeral in New Orleans," Jada would later explain in New York, a couple of weeks removed from the "Time's Up" shoot. "We faked the funeral. It's money in the casket in the end. We all scheming. It's like I came outside in the 'hood over here, and I got a call that something happened. I went and got a jet and flew to N.O. Then I went to the funeral. New Orleans is the city below sea level, so n---as get buried in mausoleums over there. So it's some hot shots of me and Nate in the mausoleum."
Jada is nearing the finish line with his Kiss of Death LP, due June 15. Mariah Carey has to lay down vocals on one track, while Teddy Riley is supposed to be submitting a beat. Kiss has also just added Eminem as a fourth-quarter contributor.
"He's doing the hook and he's rhyming, but I'mma throw Styles and Sheek on there because the name of the song is called 'Welcome to D-Block.' It's like a concept, [Em] is saying it's a D-Block everywhere. You've got to hear it. Em is my man. He'll speak to me often on the phone, always wanted to work with me, so that just put the icing on the cake for me. We've always had a good relationship with each other."
Jadakiss said his next single will be the Havoc-produced "Why?" In the record he questions many of society's pitfalls and his own personal downfalls. He'll shoot a video for it in two weeks.