Exclusive: Juve tells DX how his album takes precedent over group plans, takes his hat off to Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt.
Juvenile is clearly tired of all the Hot Boys talk that consumed his recent round of interviews.
While politely answering all of the HB-related questions asked of him during his most recent interview with HipHopDX [click to read], when one too many inquiries into the genuineness of the Boys’ reformation began to be made Juve quickly interrupted: “I can’t tell you that answer, man, but what I can tell you [is that] I don’t wanna get locked into that. I got an album coming out, dude. The Hot Boys thing, it may it may not [happen]. I’m not gon’ put my career on hold for that. I gotta do me.”
Firmly focused on Cocky & Confident (due December 1st), Juve told DX that his fans are about to receive a body rockin’, head bussin’ collection in his eighth solo effort.
“I can guarantee you I do have uptempo songs, songs thata get that rust off ya body,” he noted. “I don’t like slow songs. I like songs that can play in the club, songs that you can punch a muthafucka in the mouth on, shit like that. And that’s what my shit is.”
Big name guest appearances on Juve’s latest full-length come courtesy of B.G., Dorrough, Shawty Lo (the latter two appear on the original version of “We Be Getting Money” - with Lil Wayne and Baby surfacing on the song’s remix), and Bobby Valentino (who provides hook support for “Everything” - [click to listen]).
Cocky & Confident is led by two singles in the bass-heavy grindin’ anthem “Gotta Get It” and the radio-ready nod to the ladies “Hands On You” featuring Pleasure P, which follow the previous leaking earlier this year of album cuts “My Money Don’t Fold” [click to listen].
The regionally-focused sound found on Juve’s new LP was supplied by the in-house beatmakers from his Beats & Hooks Production Company (which houses trackmasters S8ighty, Precise and C. Smith). The firm founded by Kango Slim of veteran New Orleans duo Partners-N-Crime (B&H’s creator is also the crew’s in-house hook writer) sell their sonic and scribe services to various artists, having recently crafted both beat and hook for C-Ride and T-Pain’s “Money Round Here,” and maybe most notably of late contributed the hook to Lil Boosie’s “Better Believe It.”
In addition to contributions from Beats & Hooks, Juve himself produced two songs for Cocky & Confident.
Mannie Fresh crafted 10 tracks for the disc, two of which made the tentative tracklisting. But Juve warned, “We ain’t too sure if those two gon’ make it ‘cause we steady doing other songs right now.”
Even with the additional recording for his album, it looks as though Juve’s new offering will remain sans any heavy subject matter.
“I’m done [with that],” he noted. “I’m a happy guy on this album. I pulled the diamonds out, the Ferrari’s and shit, the Louis Vuitton glasses and all that shit. I’m back to my old tricks, nigga.”
Some may be disappointed to learn that Juve is abandoning the social commentary that fueled a creative high mark for him on his last album, 2006’s Reality Check, and more specifically the LP’s second single “Get Ya Hustle On.” Juve’s daring indictment of political shenanigans (both local and national) that took place during and after Hurricane Katrina was only matched in potency by its accompanying video (easily Juve’s most gripping visual since the Dickensian clip for 1998’s “Ha”).
“I was by the levee that blew – they didn’t wanna let me stand next to the levee, for some apparent reason I couldn’t show that on the camera,” he recalled of his filming for the video in New Orleans decimated lower ninth ward. “But they did let me go down there, and man it was…I can’t even explain it, bruh.
According to Juve, the conditions shown in the clip for “Get Ya Hustle On” have since improved, in part due to the diligent work on the part of some notable names.
“I take my hat off to Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt,” said Juve. “They went down there, man, and they been doing a wonderful job. They building neighborhoods. Oprah building other neighborhoods. They got people coming from all over the world, coming to the lower Ninth Ward, helping build the ninth ward back. ‘Cause that’s where the black people was in the city that really took the whackin’ at. Uptown, we had it bad, but not as bad as the lower ninth ward. That’s why in my video I just wanted to exploit it, and let everybody know [like], ‘They ain’t even down here doing nothing!’”
One of the apathetic responders in the aftermath of Katrina targeted by Juvenile in that song and video was New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin, who Juve warned about to his fellow N.O. residents saying, “Your mayor ain’t your friend, he’s your enemy/Just to get your vote, a saint is what he pretend to be.”
“I let bygones be bygones,” said Juve of his stance towards Nagin now in this last year of his mayorship. “I’m not still pickin’ on him like that. But it is what it is, I said what I said ‘cause that’s how I felt. I let it go. I’m not on Ray Nagin no more; I’m on my career right now. He got his job. [Laughs]”
Cocky & Confident is due in stores and online December 1st from UTP/Atlantic/E1 Entertainment.