Jay-Z Gets Behind Rick Ross To Show He's 'Still In The Rap Business'

Miami MC has underground hit with 'Hustlin' '; debut LP due on Def Jam this summer.

Being president is not enough: Now he's royalty too. Jay-Z says that Sir Paul McCartney, who performed with Jigga during the Grammys, has knighted him -- sword ceremony and all -- and given him yet another name.

"Sir Hova of Brooklyn," Jay laughed.

His flyness is still basking in Def Jam crooner Ne-Yo's #1 debut last week on the Billboard albums chart (see [article id="1525609"]"Ne-Yo Rises Above Hawthorne Heights With A Landslide Billboard Win"[/article]), but that hasn't stopped his focus on rap. His top priority at the moment is Rick Ross, who currently has a huge underground hit.

"We're shooting that video right now, and that's an urgent project for us," Jay said of Ross' street anthem "Hustlin'. " "We need that one. We have a wide range of music [at Island Def Jam], everything from Fall Out Boy to the Killers to Rihanna. I just want everybody to know that we are still in the rap business."

Jay said he didn't mind getting into a bidding war with other companies to sign Ross, a longtime staple in Miami's underground scene. Hov has had his eye on him for quite a while, and the timing was perfect.

"[Memphis] Bleek actually told me about him first," Jay recalled. "Bleek went down to Miami, and he told me that dude was nice. [Ross] fell off the radar for a while, then he popped back up with this record 'Hustlin'.' He had this record poppin' in Miami, and I was like, 'Oh, that's the kid!' "

Jay's excited not only about "Hustlin'," but because Ross has other songs that people will be talking about as well.

"He's got a couple of follow-ups," Hov said. "His whole thing is the other side of Miami. Everybody is talking about the cars and the water. He's showing you the [darker] side of Miami. That's his whole approach to it."

Ross' Career Criminal is due on Def Jam sometime this summer.

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