Turk Emerges From Cash Money Fringe

Last Hot Boy without a solo record finally drops one, Young & Thuggin'.

Although he's been on platinum albums, heavily rotated videos, hit songs and a bevy of tours, the world is not too familiar with Turk.

Sure, hip-hop fans may know his name and face, but rolling with his more flamboyant family members — the Cash Money Millionaires and the Hot Boys — Turk has more often than not been relegated to background status.

"I blame that on myself because I was shy and laid-back," Turk said. Now opening up a little more, Turk, the only member of the Hot Boys without a solo album (everybody else — Juvenile, BG and Lil Wayne — has at least two), is ready to unabashedly tell his story with his debut, Young & Thuggin', due June 5th.

"This is the hardest album since [Juvenile's] Tha G-Code," Turk said, assuring fans of Cash Money that they can expect more of what they love: girls, guns, getting your grind on and flashing their platinum grills.

Not surprisingly, Manny Fresh produced the entire album and the Hot Boys and Big Tymers are featured throughout the LP. Turk said that Cash Money's newest members, Christina (the label's first female rapper), her brother Mickey and Mack 10 will also appear on the album.

"Mack 10 is great. It's like he was here all the time," Turk said about his labelmate, who appears with him and the Hot Boys on "Yes We Do." "Being with the younger guys, [his music] is getting even more gangsta."

Turk said Cash Money Records is still one big family — Juvenile included. Lately the industry has been buzzing about a possible severing of ties between Juvenile and his blinging brethren.

"Shoot the messenger!" Turk said jokingly, dismissing talk of any breakups. "You know how they say 'don't shoot the messenger,' I say 'shoot the messenger.' You know how them rumors be. Juvenile is still with us. He's just been taking a break because he started work on his new label. We talk to him every day. He's on my album. They started rumors about me that I was leaving. "

It's a wonder that Turk and his crew even have time to hear any innuendo with their current work schedule. They're locked down in the studio.

"We stay working," Turk said. "The new Hot Boys album (Let 'Em Burn) is finished and coming out soon, Wayne got his new album finished. BG got his new album finished, Juvenile's album is coming out soon, and Baby got a solo album coming."

Turk also said he's already started on his second solo album, Untamed Guerilla, which will drop early next year, and that there's another Cash Money movie in the making, to be directed by Charles S. Dutton.

The first single from Young & Thuggin' is "It's in Me." Turk is currently wrapping up production on the video for the second single, "Freak Dem Girls," which appears on the album as "Freak Dem Hoes."