"Everybody feels a way about K/ But at least y'all feel something," Kanye West raps about himself on "Bring Me Down," a track from his new LP. Some detractors have said West talks too much. 50 Cent, however, is one person who says he wants to hear a little bit more from West.
"He puts together witty phrases and he's a great talent as a producer, but I still don't know who Kanye West is when I listen to him," 50 said recently in Miami. "By listening to the record, I don't know who he is — I know he's been in a car accident, that's what I know."
50 had been talking about how Mase was a perfect fit for G-Unit Records (see "50 And Mase: The Pastor Isn't Officially G-Unit Yet, But A Song Is Already Out"), but he then offered some unsolicited opinions about Kanye and why the Louis Vuitton Don has been one of the few MCs to sell major units in the last few years.
"I feel like Kanye West is successful because of me," he said. "After 50 Cent, [hip-hop fans] was looking for something non-confrontational, and they went after first thing that came along. That was Kanye West, and his record took off."
Since his trip to Miami for the VMAs, 50 has taken off — to Europe, where he and the G-Unit are on a tour that's slated to conclude in London on October 16 (see "50 Cent Touring Europe To Make Up For Anger Management 3 Cancellation"). When 50 returns, he'll be promoting his movie, "Get Rich or Die Tryin'," and its accompanying soundtrack. Afterward, rather than heading into the studio to record a new LP, 50 said he might return overseas to build up his international fan base.
"My next album, I don't know [when it'll come out]," he said. "You think [the people] need a break? I may have to give them a break. I want to see what they do if I sit down for a minute. When I say 'sit down,' I don't mean I won't be active — I'll leave the U.S. for a little while. I'll go outside the country and start developing my base outside the country a little more while they think I'm at home chillin' — then I'll come back and finish them off."
It's not like he's leaving his fans in the lurch, though: He just re-released The Massacre with bonus material, and "Get Rich" is slated for release on November 9.
"The music is great," he said, smiling, about the soundtrack. "I feel they should anticipate the soundtrack like they should anticipate the next 50 Cent album. I got great performances from each one of the artists: Lloyd Banks, Tony Yayo, Young Buck, Mobb Deep, Olivia, M.O.P. I was able to let them work, and while they're recording their albums, I took my favorite records from them, like, 'Oh, that's hot. Let me put that on my soundtrack.' I took my favorite records."
50 admits that collecting the hottest records for his soundtrack was a little selfish, but he wanted to make a soundtrack that stands the test of time — besides, he's the boss.
"I put the people closest to me on it," he added of the album. "I don't have a lot of friends. When I look around, I play a role different from the average friend. Your friend is somebody you have a personal relationship with, but your friend doesn't actually employ you. Sometimes I'm sure they would like to tell me '50, would you shut the f--- up!' Or 'Get out of here!' But they don't tell me that 'cause I employ them."
Tony Yayo's debut, Thoughts of a Predicate Felon, will debut at #2 on the Billboard albums chart next week. M.O.P. is in the studio. Mobb Deep say they have an abundance of material recorded and are in the process of discussing which songs to include on their next LP (see "50 Cent Wants To Sign Mobb Deep, M.O.P. To G-Unit Records" and "Mobb Deep Lose Label Deal — And They're 'Thrilled' "). Olivia just filmed a video for her next single, "So Sexy," in Miami with her entire musical family; her debut LP, Behind Closed Doors, is slated for release this fall.
For an excerpt from 50 Cent's book, see "From Pieces to Weight".