NEW YORK — Chamillionaire was so hellbent on proving his naysayers wrong with his last album, The Sound of Revenge, that when the Houston rapper found success with the project, he didn't even know how to take pleasure in his accomplishment.
"I went all over the world, to Hawaii and overseas, and I didn't get to enjoy it because I was pushing myself so hard," he said Wednesday, when he was in town for an MTV live performance. "The crazy part is, after I won, I realized, 'Why was I worried about what everyone was saying?' The real victory was just being able to do what I do every day, live life and enjoy it. 'Why am I pulling my hair out and stressing over what everyone is saying?' "
So with that, Cham decided to call his follow-up Ultimate Victory. The album is now slated for a June 5 release on Universal Records.
"This time it's [gonna be] more about enjoying life and worrying about what's more important than the nonsense," he explained. "[For] this album, I tried to kick everyone out of the studio and focus on creating concepts I wanted to. I didn't want to think, 'Oh, I need to make a single [for the ladies], I need to make this club song.' I just kind of did what I wanted to do like I do on my mixtapes. And I was at peace doing it and I loved it."
For Victory, Chamillionaire recruited Kelis, Snoop Dogg and Busta Rhymes for his first two singles, "Not a Criminal" parts one and two. The Texas star also has collaborations in the can with Lil Wayne and late producer Disco D.
"I worked with people that complemented each song," Chamillionaire explained. "I told some stories, 'cause in the South we usually make records you just dance to. I been in the studio trying to perfect [my album] and craft it and put it together and make sure it's the way I want the fans to see it and the world to see it."
[This story was originally published at 6:01 am E.T. on 04.06.2007]