Rap mogul Sean "P. Diddy" Combs may rhyme about being smitten by just one girl, but in real life he's loving being courted by many.
"It's a lot of conversations going on," he said of the record company execs vying for an affiliation with his Bad Boy label. "Everybody that I'm dating right now is looking very sexy and beautiful. We're in a great place. It's a lot of people talking the type of language I like hearing. It feels like I could go outside with a bikini thong on right now. It feels very hot and toasty, very heat wavish right now over at Bad Boy. We're not renewing our contract with [our distributor] Arista. That's official, but it's all love."
Besides his bare cheeks, Combs has a lot to bring to the table. He has an army of artists, including Craig Mack and Carl Thomas, gearing up to drop records between the end of this year and beginning of the next.
"Everybody's in the studio right now," said Diddy, who'll be bringing some of his roster on the road with him this summer as he tours with Ja Rule, Fat Joe and Busta Rhymes. "We're getting a lot of this heat ready to drop on people. We have Loon coming. We have a new G. Dep album coming, new Black Rob album coming. I'm in the studio with Total. Dream's album is almost finished. [We're] still working this Faith [Evans] album. We're in the grind just trying to make hot joints."
Another performer who's in the lab right now is Def Jam's Foxy Brown. She still records for the house that Russell Simmons built, but P.D. hinted that he's trying to entice her to jump ship.
"Me and Foxy's cool," he explained. "I like her as an artist. I mean we don't know what the future will hold. Usually I don't even look at nobody's women and I don't look at nobody else's artists, but when you come and you play around in my house then you'd better nail everything down around you. Def Jam and Lyor Cohen, they came at me a little bit."
Diddy's referring to a coup Def Jam almost pulled off in February when it nearly succeeded in acquiring Bad Boy's 112, going so far as to actually sign a contract with them. P.D. countered with a court-ordered injunction, and the matter is still decided (see "P. Diddy Keeps 112 From Leaving Bad Boy For Now"). He maintains that the group is still a very big part of his musical family.
"[Def Jam] wanted to make their lives a little bit interesting," Diddy said. "You know, they wanted to liven things up. They wanted to live on the edge, so we're gonna let them live on the edge a little bit. They're gonna have to really work hard, and they ain't gonna know when it's coming. They're gonna really regret the day they even looked at one of my groups or even tried to be like, 'You know, the grass is greener over here,' after we done bust our butts."
Shaheem Reid, with additional reporting by Sway CallowaySway Calloway