E-40: Ambassador Of The Bay
For his 12th release, My Ghetto Report Card, E-40 teamed up with various Hip-Hop heavyweights. The album, which features Mike Jones, Too Short, and Juelz Santana will also have The King of Crunk, Lil Jon as an executive producer. With a new album, book and a possible DVD in the works, E-40 still found time to talk to DX about life, family, slang-biters and the Hyphy movement. He was even nice enough to offer fans some business tips.
Working with various artists for your entire career, what has made this album different with Lil Jon on board and what sets this album apart from the rest?
Its the beginning of a new beginning. You know, Im on here and my vocal punch is real high powered. Im using colorful words. Im touching down on all kinds of angles. Im spittin punch-lines and metaphors and Im giving it to em straight across the board and Im telling it like it is. This is a vintage E-40 type of album but with a new school, new millennium twist. With a new machinery, new producers along with the vintage producers I got on there. Its the beginning of a new beginning baby. The album is bananas man. Its coconuts.
As a father, youll be working with your son (producer Droop-E) on this project. How has that experience been?
Aw, man wonderful. You know, its something that we didnt really design like that but it just ended up happening. My lil young mustache, my son...You know hes been around it all his life you know and, he delivered. He did his thang. Hes one of the hottest producers in Northern Caliscrillia. And des spreadin man, you know what I mean?
Aside from music, you are known as one of the illest with the slang. How did that originate and when will fans be able to check out the E-40 Dictionary?
Where Im from...Im from the Yay Area, the Bay Area in Northern Caliscrillia. Up top, you know the 1300 block, Magazine St. Out there in Northern Caliscrillia you gotta realize theres a lot of slick talkers and collar poppers out there. Me being a young mustache and a student of the game, I analyzed the OGs you know what I mean? They laced my tennis shoes and taught me how to stay sharp, you smell me? Sharper than a porcupines spine. So, ever since I was a young mustache, thats what I do. We got the gift of gab out there. Im one of the dudes that come with those words that a lot of these rappers be sayin, you smell me?
Thats something I wanted to touch on...A lot of times you hear people talk about slang being stolen from the Bay without giving proper credit where it's due. How does that make you feel? And whos the worst at biting your style?
Well, you know of course its the rappers. They (are) the worst at biting my style. Im not bitter at any of it. I just feel disrespected sometimes cause cats will run away wit it and act like they dont want to say nobodys name or nothin. I just charge to the triple beam and keep it going. I feel like as long as the real know...I couldnt be a person like that. If I took a word from somebody, I would have to say their name or something like Yo, like such and such say... Especially if theyre a rapper or a well-known rapper and someone thats been gettin bit all they life. I would have to say Give dap where dap is due. You smell me? I wouldnt be that type of dude. I put a lot of lingo out there. Im known for my slang, dont get it twidded. You know Im known for being the brick layer and the dude who spearheaded the independent underground rap scene, selling tapes out the trunk of the car, you smell me? Im also known for my fast, start-stop & go scoop-type delivery, the wicked flow that I got.
Theres never been a time where you wanted to call out certain emcees as biters?
You know what? Ive always been one of them dudes where I feel like As long as the hood know... and my fan base, or as far as the inner-city and even the suburbs, long as they know that I am the undisputed King of Slang, I feel aint no need for me to even speak on it because whats in the dark come to light in the future, you smell me? So, I feel aint no need for me to even entertain it, you know what I mean?
A regular renaissance man- you talked about the tapes and hustlin. You got the radio show, Fat Burger, heard something about a club opening up, you got the book. What advice would you give young aspiring entrepreneurs and musicians out there?
You know, I know you got to get the flamboastin and showcasin and the materialistic items out your system but theres a way to do it too. If you get your beak wet with your first check or two or whatever the case may be, when you first get your chalupa-gooda, ya smell? First thing you should do to me, I feel like, is to buy you a piece of property. It don't matter if its a fixer-upper or if its an old house in the hood or a place in the projects. Wherever the hell its at, long as its a piece of property and you the owner. Thats one. Dont sit up here and buy something that cost $350-360,000 and it cost more than the house that you live in ya smell me? The money can go, you know? If you dont stay hustlin, and what I mean by hustlin-Im talkin about this rap-game hustlin- if you dont stay rap-hustlin, you gon find yourself making more withdrawals than deposits. Next thing you know you gon be out of gooda. You gon look back like Howd I mess that up? So, you just got to manage your money right. Spend money when you hit a lick, when you got some extra gooda that done came in out of nowhere and always pay your ties. Ties is everything. Give to the church, give to organizations, give to homeless people, you know what I mean? If I see a homeless person, sometimes you get cats thats out there who be schemin and scammin, but long as you feel like you know what youre giving it to em for Godll bless you. I see a person, I give em $20 or $30. They might think they got over, but long as I know like I feel Im doing Gods work then we good. Make smart decisions in life and surround yourself with good people.
For those who dont know, can you elaborate a little bit on the Hyphy movement thats so big in The Bay right now?
The Hyphy movement is gonna take the world by storm. Its right now, man. Its doing it in motion right now. Its undeniable. We never cared so much, if the world was going to love us for our movement or not, we are having fun in our own environment. We want the world to embrace the Hyphy movement, because really and truly, we (are) from a soil called the Bay Area where we get bypassed like the surgery. They look over us. And we (are) the trend setters. We where everything come form. All the lingo, the swagger, the independent rap-game hustle, sellin tapes out the trunk of a car, ya smell me? Theres a lot of great talent in the Bay. Long as we feel like were having fun amongst ourselves, we gon keep on being hyphy. We want the world to come along because hyphy is high-energy music, its up-tempo, its party music no matter what. No matter where its from its party music. Hyphy could be from Boise, Idaho. If it was in Boise, Idaho and made your head bob and you dancing to it, its music. You cant deny it. You know what I mean? The whole movement is a whole different situation. You know about the whole movement: the cars, the lingo, the stunna-shades, the dreadlocks, the hyphy train, the sideshows, the music that makes the youngsters and cats do the hyphy dance, ya smell me? Its like 50-100 different phases of the dance. Anybody can be hyphy man. Just let yourself go. Its high energy. Its the cousin of crunk, we just more up tempo. And its good music man. Its party music. We hyphy!
Aside from the aforementioned Lil Jon, who are some other artists who will be featured on the album?
We got my Sik-Wid-It umbrella. We got B-Legit on there. We got Turf Talk. We got Al Capone up out of Memphis, Tennesee makin easy money, pimpin hoes in style. We got Basco, Mike Jones, 8-Ball, Bun-B, Pimp-C of UGK, Juelz Santana, T-Pain and we got Too Short. We on there actin a rectum man. Its a wonderful piece of work man. The album is a monster!