In rap music, the only constant has been change and the fans have become accustomed to watching rapper after rapper come in on top and creep out the bottom. But over the years, another constant has been the presence of Compton MC The Game.
Since his mainstream intro via Dr. Dre’s Aftermath label, we’ve watched the Compton native go from a platinum selling upstart recklessly beefing with everyone from Joe Budden to G-Unit, to a father of four, attempting to squash beefs between Odd Future and Chris Brown via Twitter big homie style… while recording himself beating up 40 Glocc. With a new album on the way and his new label in home in question, The Game sits with TUD to discuss growing in the game, growing as a person and the way some things never change.
TUD: During a Kendrick Lamar set back in August of 2011, you and Snoop passed the torch to Kendrick live on stage and there are plenty of people who would have considered that sort of a swan song move only because you’ve done so much. Is there anything you feel you have left to accomplish?
Game: You know what I gotta accomplish man? I gotta accomplish fatherhood first. Raise my kids, send them off to college and prove to myself first and to their mom and my family and to them, that I can be the best father to them to see them throughout their childhood all the way into adulthood. I’m definitely looking forward to that one Thanksgiving or that one Christmas dinner where all the kids come home and they got their wives and the kids or my daughter comes home with some new guy and I gotta, you know, pull the shottie out and take him in the back and have that talk. I wanna make it to that day; those are the days I kinda look forward to these days. As far as rap is concerned, I think that over the last twelve years I’ve been pretty consistent as far as staying in the game and being an “A” list artist and just staying hot man. And it doesn’t necessarily have to do with rap albums man. I’m working on my sixth album now and these days, cats don’t even last for two or three albums. So I’m just blessed man, I’m still as hood as they come but I’m still in church trying to do the Christian thing and I’m still a family man and still an athlete and just, you know… I’m Game man.
How do you balance that? Have you gotten to the point where you’ve walked away from altercations for the sake of being a good dad?
Yeah, you know what? I think that as far as who I was when I was younger, before my first son was born and who I am now, is pretty much the same person except there are those instances where something might happen and I gotta think about the livelihood of my children and somebody might get a pass. And then you got times where somebody might disrespect me so crazy man that they might get they ass socked. So it is what it is man, as long as I’m not pulling out a gun and blowing nobodies brains out, I think a lawsuit or two wouldn’t hurt. But I’m not to be disrespected; I don’t care if I have a tribe of kids. Man, I don’t wake up in the morning and pick on anybody or stare at nobody or ask them what they looking at or start a fight man, it’s always somebody starting something with me. And of course, every time, I’m gonna show up for the bullsh*t as well as for the positive. And I think that’s my balance. And that leads to people saying “Awww man, he bipolar. He doing all this cease fire but then he out here fighting…” I’m just living man, I’m just living and I don’t care if a n*gga was a nerd. If you’re a nerd and someone disrespects you or your family, you might have to put em up and fight man. It is what it is, just that animal instinct man. I grew up in Compton, that’s who I am at heart and I ain’t changing for nobody.
You seem to run into those kinds of issues more than the average rapper though…
(Laughs) Yeah, you know what? It’s just because I’m low tolerance. I’m with the bullsh*t and I don’t know how many dudes it’s gone take to teach that lesson man. But I’m a really positive dude man. I look out, I do a lot of things for a lot of people and I be chillin man. It’s not till some f*ck ass n*gga come around trying to start something that sets me off man. I’m working on it, and I don’t know if I’ll ever get it at 100% non-violent Game but uh… I’m better than I used to be so you know, work in progress bro.
See I’m not sure people see that. I think the general perception is you’re happy being a rah-rah dude with no thoughts of switching it up or “working on it” as you say.
Yeah, well you know, anybody with any damn common sense knows the way we’re built as human beings is to grow and get stronger and wiser and use situations that kinda rendered us helpless in the past to become a better person and you kinda do that naturally as a human being if you have sense. So I’m always working on being a better person in different aspects of my life.
Well let’s talk about the musical aspect. There was a rumor that you were signing to Cash Money. Baby comes out and confirms but later you said it wasn’t “written in stone” yet. What’s the status now?
The thing is that me and Birdman, we’re trying to make it happen. I went down to Miami and recorded a bunch of songs and came back and it was my birthday and then Thanksgiving and now Christmas and New Years. We just said we’d handle the business at the top of the year. So it ain’t like I’m not signing, we gone work it out in January, when 1st quarter takes pace. Cause as far as music is concerned you know everybody is gone for the holidays. The lawyers and everybody else in the buildings you know? So in January we’ll work it out, we’ll figure it out but Cash Money, that’s my fam and you know, I ride with them no matter what it is.
So what I got from that was, you’re cool with them and you have every intention on signing, you just have some details to work out. Correct?
I just have some details to work out and until the pen hits the paper it wont be 100% official but in my mind it is. So we ‘gone ride throughout the holidays and pick it back up in January and figure out the best situation for me and the company.
Do we have a title for the album?
Man I swear if I had it I’d give it to you! I don’t have the direction I need… I recorded a bunch of songs in Miami, like 60 70 songs and I can go in any direction. But what I will tell you is that this album from what I recorded so far is real reminiscent of The Doctors Advocate and somewhere along the lines of The Documentary. I’m just back into my emotions man and that type of rapping, so I’m gonna do my best.
Any sign of Dr. Dre on this one?
You know what man, Dre… he’s doing him. And when you make damn near a billion dollars off of headphones… I mean I wouldn’t be too enthused on doing sh*t in the studio (Laughs) But Dre is a good guy man, I always give him props for taking me off the streets and giving me an opportunity to be who I am. You know, we had our ups and downs but we cool. So that’s where it is right now.
Last question, G-Unit reunion. What’s good?
I’m chillin’. I don’t know what them dudes is doing but I am a unit, I’m a unit alone. Out of everybody in the group I’m the most potent in Hip-Hop and the only one that pretty much still has a say so as far as rap goes. Everybody else is pretty much hanging on by a limb so that’s where we gone leave it.
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