A Talk with Hip Hop Legend J Prince
Entrepreneur, CEO and Founder of Rap A Lot Records J Prince is a legend in the Hip Hop game. He built a music empire right in the city of Houston, Texas. He has worked with a number of artists in the industry and been a mentor to many. In his new book, The Art and Science of Respect, A Memoir by James Prince, he opens up on a number of issues, and his rise to success in the music industry. He recently spoke with me during a radio interview inside the Midday on 97.7 The Beat of the Capital, and shared with me the reason he chose to finally speak out in such a candid way.
Tambra Cherie: What made you write this book at this moment in your life right now?
J Prince: I’m a guy that started with nothing and I figured out how to turn nothing into something. I wanted to share this book with all my fans and all of those who been riding with me, and inspiring me along this journey. I wanted to share my wisdom, my knowledge, my understanding with them along with my spirituality. This book covers everything from all of my wins and all of my losses, and everything that happened in between. It’s a lot of blueprints to accomplishing things that I accomplished that I know so many want to know how to do the same thing. I’m sharing my heart in this book.
Tambra Cherie: You opened up in this book. In the media, you really didn’t do a lot of interviews or talk to a lot of people but now you have your book. You talk about going from the streets to the music industry and a lot of people that look up to you want to know what was your key to success to do that?
J Prince: I had a lot of keys but one of my chapters in the book consists of the biggest deal I ever made. That was a transition from the streets to corporate America. If I hadn’t made that decision then I wouldn’t be able to speak on this phone this freely right now, or maybe not be able to speak at all. I think that its important for those that are in bondage or in some kind of street activity that I would love to read this first- and I hope it will inspire them to move above and beyond bondage. Anybody that’s trying to make a career out of something that’s against the universal laws of God, then they have already lost the race before they start.
Tambra Cherie: You’re very spiritual and a lot of people don’t know that. Did you need anyone to really talk with you and tell you that its finally time to tell your story? Did you need encouraging yourself or you knew it was time?
J Prince: No I follow my spirit and my spirit told me it was time. I try to be obedient when my spirit speaks to me and now you all have me live and in living color.
Tambra Cherie: My DJ refers to you as the founder of Houston, TX! You’ve worked with so many artists on your label from Pimp C, Zero, Scarface, Getto Boyz, etc. Do you have a favorite artist that you had on your label?
J Prince: (Laughs) You know I enjoyed all of them. Its so many different personalities you know, I enjoyed them all. In my book, I’m real honest and everybody I worked with I didn’t like. But you know it was business, so I done business in spite of not liking an artist. But the majority, I had love for all of them.
Tambra Cherie: Now we know and I do believe that’s from the book, because blogs have been talking about that you actually spoke to Biggie during that time before his death and advised him of things not to do. Are there any other artists that you’ve advised that we may not know about?
J Prince: Yes, its many. What’s important, some listened, some didn’t. Speaking of Biggie and Puff, you know I had heard some things and I turned my bus around. I was leaving LA and I turned around and drove a lot of miles just to be able to say to them - you know be careful out here. You know I don’t even know why you’re out here. Leave. My spirit led me to do that and I done it. I think they left that time but they came back, and unfortunately, we all know how that ended.
Tambra Cherie: Right. Unfortunately, and now we know now recently you’ve been a mentor to Drake. Your son discovered Drake and many know about the back and forth between Pusha T and Drake . You advised Drake not to even respond.
J Prince: Yeah I done that and I’m glad he had enough respect for me to hear me out. So many don’t understand you know when the lines are crossed, where music is concerned, somebody has to have sense enough to stop the hate from brewing and stop the fertilizer from being put on disrespect. For Pusha to disrespect the man mama, daddy, his friend who is dying making fun of him, that is the ultimate disrespect and I call it a pigpen mentality. We not them kind of people and we wasn’t about to jeopardize our movement for a moment.
J Prince’s book, The Art and Science of Disrespect is being released June 22nd. Its also in audio and its being narrated by him. He went on to say that he assured we would get it in good southern style like we like it in Mississippi.