Game’s fifth studio album, Jesus Piece, drops December 11, satisfying his contract obligations with Jimmy Iovine’s Interscope Records imprint. And though he’s focused on properly promoting the album, which he likened to a 2012 version of mentor Dr. Dre’s seminal classic The Chronic, the Compton spitter is excited about the possibilities of being a free agent like LeBron James.
“This is my last studio album for Interscope,” Game told Sway during Wednesday’s episode of “RapFix Live.” “I talked to Ross the other day — shout-out to MMG, Wale and Meek Mill, they started off the MMG Tour in Penn State. I rocked with ‘em onstage and I was talking to Ross, and Ross was like, ‘What’s up with that last album?’ And I’m like, ‘You know, it’s the last album.’ And he was like, ‘Nah, never mind, Jimmy ain’t gon’ let you go.’ So that and talking to [Cash Money's] Baby and [Lil Wayne] two times a week, you know, it’s cool. I kinda feel like a little free agent in the league real quick.”
Prompted by Sway’s reference to being a #1 pick, Game let on that he’s fortunate to still be able to move the meter in hip-hop culture.
“You know what’s dope about it is that to even be able to say I’m working on my fifth album and still have momentum and not have fell off is cool in itself,” Game said. “So I’m just appreciative to still exist in hip-hop and still be wanted in music … to still be loved and appreciated.”
Game’s volatile relationship with his label has been well-documented. He touched on how the scarred relationship with his label execs has affected his career and standing in the game.
“I feel like my career would have been a little bit more successful and I would’ve been bigger if I sold out and I just didn’t speak my mind and didn’t do the things that I wanted to do,” Game explained. “But I was never down with that. I’m floatin’ through, man, trying to get my record deal; I slept in a Cadillac with two pit bulls for two years. I never wanted nothin’ but a condo, some Internet and some Rice Krispies. So everything that I got is good, man. Multiple cars, nothing too lavish.
“I got houses, wifey, the kids, my friends are good, my team’s strong, nobody jealous of me, we all break bread, you know that walk-through money, that club walk-through money, we chop that down, and so I’m good in my space, man.”
Swizz Beatz offered up some sage advice to the Documentary MC about striking out on his own after satisfying his commitments to his label in light of all the problems he’s had with them.
“I just want to ask you: Going through everything that you went through with the labels, this, that and the third, why would you wanna sign with another label and not lead your own legacy with your imprint?” Swizzy asked Game on the red “RapFix” sofa. “Your imprint is very strong, you have an amazing following, and I see personally the entrepreneur in you.”
Game accepted the words of wisdom but reeled the focus back to his current LP.
“This from a music mogul, somebody that came in hip-hop at 16, 17 years old makin’ milions,” Game said. “I remember when Swizz was first rockin’ the beard, it didn’t connect. But nah, I appreciate that. I been waking up for the last week and just thinking about my own independent grind. I got enough fans to push it. I know if I need media coverage, I got real friends, but I’m just gonna ride it out with Interscope and stay loyal to them and really get this Jesus Piece album going and then make my decision later on.”
The video for Game’s most recent track, “Holy Water,” spun on “RapFix Live” prior to his segment with Sway and Swizz. The rapper, born Jayceon Terrell Taylor, came under fire two weeks ago for his album’s artwork, which features an African-American Jesus sporting a red bandana, a teardrop tattoo and marijuana leaves. Many people believed the cover was “blasphemous,” but Game stood by the controversial artwork, citing that he was no “Pastor Mase.”