A lot of my rhymes are just to get chuckles out of people. Anybody with half a brain is going to be able to tell when I'm joking and when I'm serious.
A lot of the problems I had with fame I was bringing on myself. A lot of self-loathing, a lot of woe-is-me. Now I'm learning to see the positive side of things, instead of, like, 'I can't go to Kmart. I can't take my kids to the haunted house.'
A lot of truth is said in jest.
Anybody with a sense of humor is going to put on my album and laugh from beginning to end.
Anything I've ever said, I certainly was feeling at the time.
As for my stuff, I'm just doing guest verses for other people's records. I try to stay recording, because if I don't, I get rusty.
Before I was famous, when I was just working in Gilbert's Lodge, everything was moving in slow motion.
Being a student of hip-hop in general, you take technical aspects from places. You may take a rhyme pattern or flow from Big Daddy Kane or Kool G Rap.
Certainly I'm not going to sit on the Internet all day and read what Sam from Iowa is saying about me. But I'm a sponge. I've always been a sponge.
Dealing with backstabbers, there was one thing I learned. They're only powerful when you got your back turned.
Everybody has goals, aspirations or whatever, and everybody has been at a point in their life where nobody believed in them.
Fame hit me like a ton of bricks.
Five or six songs leaked from the original version of 'Encore.' So I had to go in and make new songs to replace them.
Guns are bad, I tell you.
Hip hop has always been braggin' and boasting and 'I'm better at you than this' and 'I'm better at you than that.'
Hip-hop is ever changing but you'll always have the pack. And you'll always have those people who are separated from the pack.
Hip-hop saved my life, man. It's the only thing I've ever been even decent at. I don't know how to do anything else.
Honestly, I never really put the mic down.
Honestly, I'd love to be remembered as one of the best to ever pick up a mic, but if I'm doing my part to lessen some racial tension I feel good about what I'm doing.
I always felt that if I was going to do a movie, I wanted it to be authentic.
October 17, 1972
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