Stat Quo Says Production On 50 Cent's "Get Rich Or Die Tryin'" Originally For Rakim

The former Shady/Aftermath emcee also explains why Slaughterhouse hasn't sold millions of records, reflects on recording Eminem's "Spend Some Time," reconciling with Dr. Dre, and firing his mother.

Who knows what Stat Quo’s music career might look like had he never cut his hair? The Atlanta, Georgian is one of only two artists ever signed to Dr. Dre and Eminem’s vaulted Shady/Aftermath imprint (along with 50 Cent), yet the only one who never released an album under the multi-diamond umbrella. His reputation was never as zany as any of the Shady artists, nor as gangster as anyone on G-Unit. He didn’t rhyme about pills. He hadn’t been shot. For Shady/Aftermath circa 2000s, image dominated and rappers without an easily marketable identity sat the sidelines.

“For instance when Eminem came in he had brown hair,” Stat Quo says in this exclusive conversation with HipHopDX. He continues:

“They finished [The Slim Shady LP], he went home and Dre said he had blonde hair the next time he saw him. Dre was like “He’s out of here, we done.” That little transformation turned him into Eminem. It was Marshall when he met him but he lost a shit load of weight and got that blonde hair and now he’s Eminem. So for me, Stat Quo, they signed me when I had a bunch of hair. I cut my shit off and then I looked like I look like now—like I work in the music industry. Whereas with the hair and shit, it’s an image thing. There’s little different things like that that I wish I would have known.”

There are a number of compelling what-ifs in The Story Of Stat Quo. He details firing his manager-slash-mother (who was integral in landing pivotal opportunities with Jermaine Dupri and Mark Pitts) for booking a show in a barn then describes how he had difficulty distinguishing between friendships and business while globetrotting with the globes most popular rappers. What if he hadn't fired his mom? What if 50 Cent never took back "Outta Control" and given it to Mobb Deep? Could that have been Stat's monster break through track? From excitement in the way he talks about his version, he certainly believes so. What if the Aftermath-half of his contract agreed with the Shady-half and Statlanta was released at the peak of the imprint's commercial dominance? What would this interview cover then?    

What-if games are played everyday. The lessons learned are what push through the next check point. Stat Quo's taken all of the knowledge gained after years of working side-by-side with Dr. Dre, Eminem, 50 Cent, Scarface, Sha Money XL, Jermaine Dupri, Mark Pitts, Game, TDE, Kendrick Lamar—et al, et al, et al—and crafted his own set of #NewRules. In 2011, he partnered with Game on—management and consulting firm with an artist-first approach. He mentors rising stars on the intricacies of the music industry, sharing every tidbit picked up after traveling, as he describes, "a road to success littered with carcasses and dead bodies," and delivers it all in this interview. There's also some funny anecdotes about accidentally dissing Foxy Brown, suggestions for Slaughterhouse, and G-Unit's corny tank tops. Call this convo "Free Game From Stat Quo."   

Stat Quo Details Friendship With Dr. Dre, Experience At Shady/Aftermath



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  • One

    A detailed interview. I didn't know HiphopDX was capable of doing such a thing. I hate that Stat and Ca$his didn't blow up like the should have. Stat Quo would be perfect for rap now. I just believe that his time was too early and Dr. Dre and Em didn't know what way to take it because music change really quick. Ca$his on the other hand should have been put out earlier because gangsta music is almost irrelevant now. But we all know what Interscope/Aftermath motto is. If it ain't Em or Dre releasing something; everything else get pushed back until they leave. Examples: Busta Ryhmes Eve Stat Quo Rakim Ca$his Bobby Watercreek Bishop Lamont Marsha Ambrosius Slim the Mobster(I was always iffy about him.)

  • listen of black lives 50 cent has destroyed

    any women want to have sex with me add me on skype carltonbanks1337 im really lonely and ive never had sex with a woman twice cuz they dont call back

  • Anonymous

    Kudos to HHDX & Stat for the interview: it was personal and enjoyable, yet insightful and informative. Definitely a stand out amongst all those shallow conversations where the same questions being asked for the millionth time. Well done HHDX, this is how it should be done. As far as Stat Quo, he was always my favourite from the Shady's artists and Statlanta was probably the last time I was really cared about a project and tried to find every bit of info about it. Hopefully one day we can get all those shelved projects that dope MCs they made during their time with Aftermath. On the personal level, it's so satisfying to see somebody from this level of music business who's honest with himself, who's not afraid to address his mistakes and shortcomings. Truth be told, I feel his self-criticism is well-founded and legit - just as his remarks about how he would have went Platinum in no time back in the day. Last but not least, the highlight of the interview for me was when he mentioned how he wished to be in Slaughterhouse. Quick story time. When I first read the headline that 4-member super group named like that has been formed, I was not that excited. Literally a few seconds later, when I got to read the member's name one by one, my hype level went to the roof. First it was Joel, who got freshly released from Aftermath after spending a few years on the sidelines, and had incredible hunger in his voice at that time. That's when it flashed across my mind that the next member might be Stat, as it's the same story and situation. Second, Royce. For real? That's jaw-dropping. A close friend of Em, who also had his time with Dre as a songwriter. Another slight confirmation for Stat's involvement, he'd fit in the pattern so naturally. Third, Crooked I. Damn. One of the most underrated ever, also the old parter of Dre. Although I couldn't picked better guys by myself so far, I felt a little disappointment because I expected Stat's name to finally appear. No problem, he'll be the next! So just a little scroll, and ... Fourth ... Joe Budden. Joe-freaking-Budden. It was a major let-down, like a slap in the face. Never liked Joey's music nor his personality, he can spit but not up to the other guys skill-wise. It should have been Stat Quo, he's just the perfect match both when it comes to music and background. Nevertheless, I wish the guy the best as an independent rapper, he deserve the success and I hope he will keep it real as much as he does according to this interview, even if that phrase is already worn-out. Although I feel his association with Game could be only beneficial because his valuable connections throughout the industry, so I'd pick his teaming up with Bobby Creek as a path worth to follow musically. Again, thanks for the interview!

    • Justin Hunte

      Is a 5-member slaughterhouse unrealistic? I think Stat would still fit in the group. I really appreciate your comment. thank you, sincerely.

  • tizzlybear

    Man this was a dope interview, I've been a big Stat Quo fan since Underground Atlanta Vol. 2 and I really wanted to see dude blow (I at least wanted to hear the earlier iterations of Statlanta). This interview was entertaining he is really a funny dude. The way he illustrates his past seems like I was sitting right there. I had no idea he was suppose to sign with Jermaine Dupri. He had me rolling when he said he questioned going to Hawaii to work with Dre again then when he was talking about how LA Reid don't know what to do with rappers. And gangster Lupe? I'm going to have to look that up. Man that was a good read I may read it again. His album ATLA is a dope album I suggest people go check it out, it definitely came out better than Statlanta which didn't keep my attention long. Looking forward to the second part of the ATLA.

    • Justin Hunte

      "But BMG had a different agenda / What up LA Reid I still see ya / You still my homeboy, won't even charge you for a feature / I went from MC to being MS / That's microphone controller to motivational speaker..." -- Lupe Fiasco, "Dear Fall." It's crazy to think about a Shiny Suit Carrera Lu kicking gangster raps. I guess that's where songs like "Pop Pop" came from. You're 100% correct, btw. Underground Atlanta V2 was dope! Thanks again for checking the story.

  • Wow

    This was one helluva interview.. Stat Quo really kept it real. And I thought the part about his dick was funny, especially when he said he pulled it out in class at age 11. Great metaphor for growth as a human being haha, and Stat Quo is clearly a funny dude. HHDX can be hit or miss, but this is up there with the interview about fitness in hip-hop. Excellent piece.

    • Justin Hunte

      Mike Trampe killed the Fitness editorial! Thank you for checking the site. Everyday we're working to improve.

  • Anonymous

    Who's Stat Quo? Such a long interview for a average rapper

  • Anonymous

    In other news: Stat Q says he did songs for Detox.

  • 100s

    Wayne is definitely not as dope as he used to be.

  • Anonymous

    Great interview man!

  • j

    Dope niggas asked to many questions about 50 and drw and them.I would like to have heard more about stat.


    Fantastic interview! Of course I don't wish this but the day Dr.Dre dies and the estate opens up those vaults and starts releasing all that music he's recorded, but never released, we're going to hear from some incredible shit.

  • whatever

    Tony Yayo only one in g-unit that never been shot 50 - 9 times we all know the story buck- 2 or 3 in a home invasion Banks - 2 outside a club in southside Game - 5 u know the story

  • casper21

    incredibly insightful interview. One of the few reasons I check in on dx, these rare interviews that really reveal the back story to some of the best music that came out at the peak of its popularity.

  • Anonymous

    Bishop dude didn't go to far, seriously, sometimes Dr. Dre just signs people to get their hype about him then he drops them like a stone into the ocean. Eminem does the same thing, it's about the hype, not the art sometimes.

    • Anonymous

      Bishop had so much potential but I guess he didn't have the character/image.

    • Justin Hunte

      Sadat XSADAT X!!!was talking about how everything in the industry is about "eye candy" in an interview with BrilliantMindPro last year and says he had to adjust his diet to help keep him commercially viable. The F*ck With You Era is real. Thanks for the comment, Anonymous.

  • Ether Q

    That was a dope interview. He seems like a humble, intelligent dude. I agree it was weird when he was talking about his dick and the threesome cause it didn't match the vibe of the rest of the interview however overall it was a nice piece. Seems like he was super bitter at one point but has matured past that. I wish him nothing but success and hope his new label idea works out. And he's completely right about image being the main factor in an artist's success. Partly why Slaughterhouse hasn't been as successful since they are all regular dudes that can spit above regular bars. Like way above regular. Yet none of them has something that really stands out and makes them a celebrity. Look at all the popular acts in hip-hop. Mostly fabricated stories and almost a cartoon appeal to them. Good read though and good luck in the future to Stat

    • Justin Hunte

      Thank you for checking the story, sir. I can't help but wonder how his career might've been had social media been more prevalent as well. Fans never really got a chance to get to know him as a person. How does his narrative play out if he gets a chance to build an organic base at the height of his interest in music? Something to think about. I really appreciate your comment, Ether Q.

  • dentaldamboy

    They left out the part about Sta Quo saying Tupac was able to finally rest in peace when Carter I came out becuase he know the rap game was in the talented hands of Lil Wayne.

  • M

    good interview but it did get kind of weird at one point with Stat talking about his dick

  • Anonymous

    that was a great read. he's dropping knowledge.

  • Anonymous

    "As dope as Drake is, his shit is very simple. You know that Muthafucka never loved us / Remember? [Worst Behaviour] Its just simple, real basic shit because most people are dumb. They are stupid." This is a great quote.

  • Fuck Justin Hunte

    "Stat Quo Says Production On 50 Cent's "Get Rich Or Die Tryin'" Originally For Rakim" Y'all forgot the "was".

    • RAi L x THaALieNz

      When you're writing articles there's a different grammatical language. if this was a headline, i'd start it as.. "When Writing Articles There's....." instead of puttin the "you're" in it...

    • Anonymous

      5 tracks was for Rakim until Rakim left aftermath then Dre gave 50 the beats

  • Fuck Justin Hunte

    How does he know that? He wasn't even signed to Aftermath at that time.

  • Anonymous

    all of the interviews playing at the same time ol bullshit ass hip hop dx

    • Justin Hunte

      Thanks for pointing this out, Anonymous. I haven't been able to replicate the same issue, but I sent a note to our tech team. Much appreciated.

  • IHateMorgy

    excellent and insightful interview