Maybe Game makes his best albums when his back is against the wall. 2015 has seen Jayceon Taylor celebrate the 10 year anniversary of his revered Aftermath/G-Unit debut, The Documentary, as well as its sequel, The Documentary 2 which was released on Friday. Early response from critics and fans place the double disc near the top of his underrated catalog. But it’s difficult to imagine where Game’s career might be had he never delivered possibly his best project, The Doctor’s Advocate in 2006.
Nine years ago, facing the dreaded sophomore slump, a legitimate beef with 50 Cent that left him outside of Hip Hop’s most successful inner circle (Dr. Dre, Eminem and 50 Cent) and without support from his label Interscope, Game took refuge in New York City, unleashed the persistent G-Unot campaign which saved him from being Ja-Ruled, and crafted the album that defined his resolve.
“It’s my most West Coast album, which is crazy,” Game tells DX in this exclusive interview. “The beats are so melodic from everyone from Denaun Porter to DJ Khalil to everyone who participated on the album… I got a lot of love from New York emcees so I felt inclined to complete the album. I didn’t know that when I came back to California and went into Interscope what they were going to say, but I came back with the album and ‘One Blood.’ So without having label support, I gave ‘One Blood’ to Jim Jones. He gave it Kay Slay. Kay Slay started playing it in the clubs, then everyone else—[Funkmaster Flex], DJ Clue, Angie Martinez—all started playing ‘One Blood.’ Then LA radio stations picked up on what it was and started playing it, too… When you complete an album with no help, not knowing if the label’s gonna put it out or nothing, it’s all odds against you.”
Perhaps The Documentary 2 will be viewed in a similar light 10 years from now. Facing a gaggle of lawsuits, most notably his pending trial for punching an off-duty police officer during a basketball game, the Compton emcee is legitimately looking at jail time. Literally, again, his back is against the wall while arguably his best work is running the streets.
“I’ll probably end up going to jail for the shit that I’ve been doing recently and I’m gonna have to sit down,” he tells DX. “Other niggas gonna be out still on the internet pretending to be whatever it is they pretending and I’m gonna be sitting down drinking juice boxes and shit and eating nasty sandwiches because I had to prove to a nigga that I was Game. So I’m just gonna be Game. I ain’t doing shit to niggas no more because they call the police and they sue niggas.”
Along with the above, this extremely vulnerable conversation finds Game digging deep into his rhyme style and approach to crafting cohesive albums, his Robin Hood Project, his social media spat with Stitches, and the unfortunate resurgence of Los Angeles gang violence. He also reflects on his beef with Jay Z, compliments Young Thug, and basks in his love of Hip Hop. Meet Jayceon Taylor, the man.
The Making Of The Doctor’s Advocate
HipHopDX: November 14, 2016 will be the 10 year anniversary of The Doctor’s Advocate. That album to me is…
Game: My best album, for me. Without cutting you off, I know what it took to write that album. After you sell basically 5 million records—The Documentary to date has sold 14 million [copies]—when you sell that million right off the bat and then you lose your support system and label support and break up with G-Unit and Dr. Dre. [Dre] don’t leave you as a friend but musically he had to step back because there was a lot of drama, bullets and fights and you know Dre had enough of that in his career to even think about entertaining it in someone else’s career. When you complete an album with no help, not knowing if the label’s gonna put it out or nothing, it’s all odds against you.
I spent three months in New York working on The Doctor’s Advocate. I got a lot of support from Nas and Busta Rhymes and Fab. I got a lot of love from New York emcees so I felt inclined to complete the album. I didn’t know that when I came back to California and went into Interscope what they were going to say, but I came back with the album and “One Blood.” So without having label support, I gave “One Blood” to Jim Jones. He gave it Kay Slay. Kay Slay started playing it in the clubs, then everyone else—[Funkmaster Flex], DJ Clue, Angie Martinez—all started playing “One Blood.” Then LA radio stations picked up on what it was and started playing it too. Every club I went to, when they put “One Blood” on it was amazing.
So then all of a sudden the suits and ties at Interscope understood that we were getting spins on the record. I was signed to Interscope but it wasn’t Interscope sanctioned so they jumped on the dick and put The Doctor’s Advocate out and that’s what it was. The whole album I got done on favors. I didn’t have no money. So [Kanye West] doing “Wouldn’t Get Far” and shooting a video to that with no money, out of my pocket, was something that I did. The label of course, got their money but they wasn’t down with it. And I understand because 50 Cent sold 10 million off of Get Rich Or Die Tryin’ so they had to stay loyal to the money maker because it is a business. I understood that aspect of it. But when I dropped “One Blood” they jumped right back on the dick and we put that album out and shit, The Doctor’s Advocate ended up selling 5 million.
The Doctor’s Advocate is the only album aside from The Documentary 2 where I had 100 percent creative control. You have to understand that when I have 100 percent creative control I’m going to have the best album possible.
DX: That time in your career is interesting. You’re coming off of a fantastically successful debut in The Documentary, the challenges with 50 Cent, potential sophomore slump looming, and you made the album in New York and it still sounds like a West Coast project.
Game: It’s my most West Coast album, which is crazy. The beats are so melodic from everyone from Denaun Porter to DJ Khalil to everyone who participated on the album. Even Nas’ “I’m pro-black, I don’t pick cotton out of Aspirin bottles” [from “Why You Hate The Game”]. Just sitting there in Sony Studios way in the back. Nobody knew I was in there except a few people. Sitting in the back with Nas for eight hours and they’re drinking merlot and watching New York Giants games and just him writing his verse so eloquently in private over in a corner and me I’m sitting back on BlackPlanet looking for some pussy—that to me is big. When I met Nas I was walking outside of Houston’s in New York. For a Hip Hop legend to be like, “Yo son, you Game?” And I’m like, “I’m Game.” He was like, “I heard all your [DJ Whoo Kid] mixtapes you’re really doing your thing, son. I’m Nas. Here go my number. Call me if you need me.” This was after The Documentary dropped so of course when I’m in New York working on The Doctor’s Advocate, “call me if you need me” sounds legit.
We did “Why You Hate The Game,” man and at that point I just felt like I was getting so much hate. I never figured out why in my career people have so much envy and hate for Game. I’m the nigga that’s like Robin Hood. I’m running around the hood giving people money. I’m the dude that’s a father figure on and off social media so that people can see. I’m the dude that keeps it 1,000 percent. I’m gonna say what I want to say. I’m gonna do what I want to do. You would think that that would register with people as the god, but I get so much hate. I don’t know if it’s because I’m too real or if mutherfuckers are genuinely born haters. Maybe doctor’s pull babies out and hand them to parents like, “Here’s your baby Hater.” It all is what it is. One thing about Game is that I’m gonna be here. I can’t be killed because I walk with God. I’m a big nigga. I’m 6’5, 246 pounds. I’ve boxed since age eight all the way to 19 [years-old] so the hands are crazy. They can do the Nae Nae or they can nae nae a nigga face. Either way, I’m gonna be here, bro. I ain’t going nowhere—no-fucking-where.
I’m 34 years old. When Jay Z was 34, Jay got rich and dope later. He was 30 when Reasonable Doubt dropped so four years after that he wasn’t the Jay that he is now. He was big, but he wasn’t JAY Z! I was the first nigga that brought Reasonable Doubt through the hood in Compton playing it. Niggas’ was like, “Who the fuck is this? This that nigga that ‘Pac hated? I can’t fuck with him.” But I still was rocking it. From that era and being in [my friend’s] back house at his mom’s crib playing Reasonable Doubt to later on beefing with Jay just because I’m a competitor. I had a talk with Jay Z and Jimmy Henchmen in the 40/40 Club a long time ago. And Jay, I didn’t like some of the words that he said. So I chose to beef with him which was a stupid mistake. I’m glad I lived through it because I could’ve got merked out. But I guess because of what happened with 50 and me getting so reckless, Jay decided to take the high road and mention me in the “The Prelude” freestyle but he really didn’t go in. On “One Blood” I said, “You still rapping and you’re 38 / Illuggh.” Then Jay was like “I used to think rapping at 38 was illuggh / Then I grossed about $38 mill.” I was like, “Oh shit, he’s coming at me.” At that point, that’s all I felt I ever really wanted was to be noticed, to be Hip Hop, to be a part of my own legacy or someone else’s legacy. That’s why Game go around doing everything that he do. I just wanna be a part of everything. When you think about it, when you die, you’re just dead, bro. You’re in a box. So everyone out here living, everyone that’s watching this on either one of these cameras that’s not doing what they want to do in life, I think personally you’re stupid because you only live once and if you walk out of your house and you get shot or you die from cancer later on in your life and you didn’t do everything that you wanted to do in your life, then your life was wasted. I’m gonna do what I wanna do, bro. That’s it. I’m not leaving here and then walk to the bank like “Give me your money” because obviously that leave me in jail and mess up my kids and do all of that. But as far as saying what I want to say in a country where it’s supposed to be freedom of speech; as far as making the type of music that I want to make, Game is gonna keep it one million percent with his fans, with himself. I don’t lie. I’m not Floyd Mayweather. I’ve lost fights. I’ve got jumped. I’m not the toughest nigga in the world, I’m just who I am. I’m not gonna lie to nobody or sugar coat anything that I am.
I know I compare myself to [Tupac Shakur] a lot because I was a fan of Tupac. I really think that if he was alive he would’ve done amazing things. He would’ve won an Oscar by now. He’d be speaking at the Million Man March. But he died and subsequently someone has to pick up where that left off. After the Death Row dynasty fell after Tupac’s untimely demise, Snoop went to No Limit. Dre did his Interscope thing with Eminem and went sort-of corporate, white and international as far as Eminem’s concerned. California was left null and void. One day I was watching 106 & Park and I see AJ and Free interviewing Shyne and he’s got on a Raiders crew neck. He’s got on the patent leather [Jordan’s] and I’m like, “I just wore that yesterday.” Same outfit. Levys. I just had that on. So I was like, “This nigga can be on 106 & Park. I can be on 106 & Park” and I had never rapped a day in my life before that. The next day I went and bought me a Mead notebook and started writing raps in there. At that time, you didn’t have no instrumentals. There wasn’t producers everywhere so I rapped over Reasonable Doubt while Jay was spitting. I rapped over Illmatic. While Nas was spitting I would write my raps over it. I listened to them shits so many times to where I didn’t even hear Jay Z or Nas no more. So them shits sound like instrumental albums to me. That’s what I wrote my [demo tape] over. I didn’t know that you had to have 16 bars. I didn’t know that rap was like math to where you gotta count and then you gotta stop. I didn’t know how it was formatted. I didn’t know that the hooks gotta be 8 bars and you gotta stick to that formant. That’s why I recorded my “100 Bars” freestyle on my demo, because I didn’t know a song format. So all my early shit is like 100 bars long. So when niggas say, “You make the longest freestyles” it’s because I did not know that you had to stop, bro. It’s been a cool ride.
If you can imagine being a fan of Jay Z, Nas, Biggie and then tomorrow you was one of the biggest rappers in the world, how would you feel? You’d still be a fan, it just happened overnight for me. So I never forget to appreciate music. That’s why I do as many features as I can on my albums, because I’m a fan. Even with the new artists—J. Cole, [Kendrick Lamar], the whole TDE, Drake, Future, all of them—they’re all on my album because I love Hip Hop so much. So all that is dope to me, that I listen to when pick my kids up from school, when I’m working out, I’m letting people know that these are the people that I listen to. And even if you listen to the Game and you’re a Game fan, I’m letting you know that I want you to listen to the people that I’m listening to, too, because they are equally dope. This is Hip Hop. We should support each other. So instead of being a hating-ass bitch, just appreciate the culture. This is De La Soul. This is OutKast Aquemini, this is when Andre 3000 used to wear jerseys and adidas with the fat laces. You don’t understand that Eazy-E didn’t rock a jheri curl every fucking day of his life. Sometimes the shit was braided. Sometimes the shit was an afro. Hip Hop changes depending on how artists feel when they wake up in the morning. Everything from ‘Pac and Biggie both dying to a real Hip Hop beef to Meek Mill and Drake’s that was a real Hip Hop beef but didn’t end violently (we should celebrate and appreciate that)—everything from then to now has been a cool ride for me as a Hip Hop fan. That’s why when I come to HipHopDX, I don’t got no fur coat. I don’t got no chains, no watch, no rope. I’m not that. I’m a nigga that plays [John Madden Football], that was playing Madden when he got shot and then learned how to rap. I still play Madden. I’ll miss interviews because I’m playing Madden. If there’s a certain place that I’m supposed to be at a certain time, if I’m in the game, nigga I’m not doing no interviews because that’s what Game is. That’s where I got my name from and that’s who I am. I can’t be nobody else. I can only be who I am.
DX: I feel like that’s what you had to have had leaned on the most during The Doctor’s Advocate. When you listen to tracks like “Compton.” will.i.am murders that beat. That is a back-against-the-wall-type project. You talk about it throughout out. Lines like “What is game without a Dr. Dre track?”
Game: Game without a Dr. Dre track is just a nigga from Compton lost, man.
DX: It’s the only time I’ve heard you on wax sound intimidated or scared.
Game: Yeah. I’ll just be honest, when The Doctor’s Advocate came out, everywhere I went… I bought a bullet-proof suburban and no one ever shot at it. I spent $500,000 on a bullet-proof suburban and no one ever shot at us. Pause. I say that because I wish I had my money back. I bought it prematurely. At one point in my career I thought that me and 50 were gonna end up like Biggie and Pac. I really thought that because I hated him that much at that point. I was there to help with the Murder Inc., thing. We took that down as a group. I was there lyrically. I was there ideally, I was there. The “What up Blood / What up Cuz / What up Gangsta” [from Get Rich Or Die Tryin’s “What Up Gangsta”], you think 50 came up with that himself? Nah. I’m from LA. We were in there as a collaborative group effort and we did that. I’ve been through it, man. To still be here untouched, unscathed, no scuffs on the air bubble. I’m really thankful. I think I might appreciate Hip Hop more that it appreciates me and I’m okay with that because I always came from the standpoint of the fan.
DX: I think that’s a perspective that’s changed over time. People used to criticize you for name-dropping in the beginning. Now everybody does it.
Game: I started it! Nobody was doing it and now every rapper that you listen to says names on top of names and I’m the one to get the backlash for it. It’s cool. I love it.
DX: That’s the pioneering aspect of it. Your style grows more impressive over time, for example, as new styles emerge. That’s part of the Game. You were rapping over Reasonable Doubt. You were rapping over Illmatic. So if you’re on a track with Kendrick, you can get into that pocket where most cats can’t reach. Or if you’re on a track with Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, “Celebration” for example, most people have a difficult time embodying that. That’s still unique.
Game: Most artists in Hip Hop—the ones that deserve mention—they got a style. Busta Rhymes has a style. Kendrick has a style. Even Dr. Dres and the Nas’. Every time you hear Nas, it sounds like Nas. I’m not saying that I’m better or not better than any of those artists, but I don’t have a style. I can become a chameleon to whoever I’m on a track with and I can emulate or get in the same pocket or rhyme in the same rhyme scheme the way that they would do it. Once again, it focuses on Game as a fan. I love the music so much. I really love the music. I’m talking about everything from Fetty Wap to Rick Ross. I’m just a fan. I used to just chop dope and listen to Big Mike. I was a fan of Big Mike. My brother and I had a wrestling match in the living room over whether Spice-1 was better than Big Mike. I’m four years younger than my brother so of course I got my ass whooped. But I was so passionate that Big Mike was better than Spice-1 at one point in my life. Then I became a fan of Spice-1 and my brother started listening to Richie Rich, so it was another scrap. I had so many Hip Hop fights in my life, it’s like once I become a Hip Hop artist, why not keep these battles going. I’ve been fighting over Hip Hop for the last 30 years, man.
DX: It’s still interesting to me that Stat Quo is the one artist signed to both Shady and Aftermath who’s album didn’t come out when it was supposed to.
Game: That’s my brother, man. That shit was dope, man. Interscope is the machine. Sometimes when you push that button, the machine goes. It worked for 50. It worked for Eminem. It worked for Game. It didn’t go so much for Obie Trice the way it should’ve because that Obie Trice album [Cheers] was fucking sick. Stat’s album was sick, too. You had a dude from Atlanta that wasn’t a trap music dude but that was lyrically inclined and could really flow who worked on an amazing album. Sometimes that button, man, they don’t push the button for certain artists. A lot of things slipped through the cracks like that. I tell Stat all the time because that kind of discouraged him from rhyming which in the end got me a partner as far as BLOOD Money entertainment is concerned, and a lifelong friend. I tell him all the time, “You’ve gotta understand, Stat, you’re one of the illest emcees that I know. You’re from Atlanta. There’s no way you’re supposed to be rapping like this.” The only other artists from Atlanta lyrically—and I’m saying lyrically. I’m not saying trap music because Future is dope, Rich Homie Quan. Young Thug even though we got [conflict]. Ludacris. They’re all respected as dope rappers. But as far as emcees, Big Boi and OutKast take the cake and then after that, Stat Quo was really an amazing force and he just didn’t get his just due.
DX: One thing he told us about that time was that everyone who released was under someone. Obie came out under Shady because it was mainly Em pulling the trigger. You came out through G-Unit. Do you think if you didn’t align G-Unit, The Documentary still would’ve come out?
Game: I think The Documentary would’ve came out regardless of being signed to G-Unit or not because it was on its way. I think 50, in the wake of our decade long beef that still hasn’t been necessarily resolved, it doesn’t stop me from being real and saying without 50 I don’t think that album would’ve been as amazing as it was because he came in at a really pivotal time where me and Dre were struggling to find the right single. We already had “West Side Story” in the pocket. Snoop Dogg was on the hook. It wasn’t 50 at first, so we already had that in pocket and ready to go. But it was like at that time you needed something for the club, something for the radio. I didn’t have “Hate It Or Love It.” I had “How We Do” but I had no 50 on it. “How We Do” without 50 on it is a totally different song. I think it would’ve still been dope. I think it still would’ve been #1. I don’t think it would’ve been #1 for as long as it was. But 50 really came in and helped me at a time when me and Dre were trying to figure it all out. I’m forever grateful for that even though we had beef or what not. It doesn’t stop me from saying thanks for coming in at that time. Where the fans got it fucked up at was feeling like 50 wrote my shit. 50 is dope. 50 was dope, is dope, still dope. That’s the music. I don’t gotta fuck with the man but the music is the music. We already talked for the last 30 minutes about how much I’m a fan of the music. 50 is dope. Can 50 lyrically fuck with Game? Nope. He can’t. I don’t like when people say 50 wrote The Documentary. 50 wrote three tracks but The Documentary was wrote by Game. The Doctor’s Advocate: No 50 involvement, no Dre involvement, was wrote by Game and that’s one of my most prominent albums to this day. When you’re a real Hip Hop fan and you know Hip Hop music, everyone I’ve talked from you, to Sway to Rockwilder—people that really listen to the music and break down lyrics and beats and albums from a Classic standpoint will tell you that The Doctor’s Advocate was the Game’s best album. At the end of the day, it kind of just is what it is when it comes to me and my craft. I really love what it is and I really love to do it. I find that I make the best Hip Hop albums when my back is against the wall and I have something to prove.
How Game Crafts Cohesive Albums
DX: You said something interesting in your conversation with Rosenberg recently. You described how when you’re making your albums, you start with the first track and won’t have a second track until you find one that fits right after the first track because they all need to sound cohesive. A few minutes ago you described how you didn’t know song structure.
Game: And now I’m structuring albums. The first time I did that was on Jesus Piece. I got an engineer. His name is Killa B [Brian Sumner]. Before that I had an engineer named Jeff and he was just there engineering and recording but we didn’t have a friendship. I wasn’t able to talk to him about the recording process. Now when I met Brian we instantly clicked and that’s important from an engineering standpoint. It’s like the interviewer and the cameraman. If one of y’all slip, the interviews wack because if he’s not focused in when you’re talking it’s lost in translation. The same thing needs to happen when you’re talking about an engineer. The person who’s recording your voice needs to know your templates, needs to know everything that there is to recording in Pro-Tools or Logic or whatever it is so he makes sure you are projected to be everything that you want to be when the lyrics come across. Me and Brian established that from day one. It just so happened that the first thing that I recorded for Jesus Piece was the intro with me and Meek Mill. I was in the studio with Meek and he was like “What are you gonna call the album?” and I’m like, “Jesus Piece.” I explained it to him. He broke it down and we recorded “Scared Now.” Brian was like, “I’m gonna put this in the session and everything we record I’ll put in the same session and we’ll build it like that.” I was like, “Why do you want to do it like that?” He’s like, “It’s easy for me to keep up with it. I only have to go to one session. You record a lot. This is an easier way to find everything. I’m just going to label it meticulously.”
When you label songs in Pro-Tools, a lot of people do it real sloppy. They’ll put “TG” for The Game and the date you’ll lose it. He really takes his time, types everything in so he can find it. That’s how we started the process from doing the tracks from doing #1 to #2. So if you say you want your album to have 14 songs on it, then you record #1 and you record #2 and if it takes you 15 fucking songs to find #3, you record 15 songs and one of them will be #3 and you start on #4. It might take you three songs to find #4 or 20 songs until you find #5 but you do it that way, you line it up so that when your fan hears your album, they start off from the beginning. You don’t listen to an album and start off at the end and go back to the beginning. You don’t listen to an album and say “I’m gonna start off on track #7.” The first time you hear an album, you listen from #1 all the way to the end. So we created this formula and that’s how we do it from now on. If you go back to Jesus Piece, sonically, I don’t care if you like the music or not, sonically it’s flows straight through. The Documentary 2’s the same way and I did it fucking twice because I got the formula and I did it twice. Disc one: all the way through. Disc two: same thing. You might not like every fucking song, but you’re gonna love the way that it fucking flows through and that will brainwash you and make you think that you like every song.
DX: I haven’t heard Disc 2 yet, but I feel that with Disc 1.
Game: Disc 2 is better than Disc 1 because Disk 1 is what I owed my fans as being The Doctor’s Advocate and giving them what they wanted from then to now. I feel like I serviced them on Disc 1. I’m looking at my comments on Instagram and looking at the blogs and currently being #1 on iTunes, I know that I gave the fans what they wanted. Disc 2 is what the fuck I wanted to do. So when you hear Disc 2, it’s Game time. It’s what I wanted to do. So that’s why Nas is on Disc 2. YG is on Disc 2. I got the nigga that did W-BALZ skits on Snoop’s album on Disc 2 because that’s the shit that I wanted to put on my album. Disc 1 is an album for my fans and I love them so I did that for y’all. Disc 2, that’s me. It ain’t nobody but me. I don’t give a fuck if you like it or not, I serviced myself. It’s dope that I got to do that because I didn’t have to merge them and make it half of me and half for the fans. I got to split it up into two CDs and hopefully everybody feel what I feel and hope that it’s equally amazing. Disc 2 is phenomenal.
LAGang Life, #100Days100Nights & Robin Hood Project
DX: One thing I like about the project is that you’re showing unity on the cover by bringing Red and Blue together.
Game: I didn’t have to fucking do that. I did it because this 100 Days and 100 Nights thing is kind of fucking me up out here. It’s one thing when you hear something, if you hear that someone got killed. If you don’t know them and they’re not connected to you, be honest with yourself and know that you really don’t give a fuck. It’s like, “Damn, that’s fucked up. Oh well. I’m going to McDonald’s.” But when it happens to someone that you know, which two of my homies got caught up in this 100 Days 100 Nights thing. If you don’t know about it, it’s where rival gangs in Los Angeles decide that the first to 100 bodies is premiere gang in LA. It might sound stupid to some people not from here but LA gang shit is real structured. It’s a real thing and people are really dying and kids are getting caught up in it. I figured that even though I’m a Blood, everyone knows Game, King Of The Bloods, the reason that I can’t get into Canada, the reason that i got all these court cases and people are talking to me like they know me when they don’t is because I’m from West Side Compton, Cedar Block Piru. I rep it. That’s me. I took a gamble making one of my CDs a blue rag. I did it not because I gave a fuck about myself. I did it because it needed to be done. I’m the nigga that said “Crip niggas / Blood niggas / Ese’s / Asians.” Think about that. If you listen to it you’re like, “Oh the song’s dope.” But if you go back 10 years ago in my thought process, there’s a reason I put Crips before Bloods. I’m a Blood obviously. I need to say Crips first because when the album come out, I don’t want to hate on the Crips. I don’t want them feeling like they can’t fuck with Game’s music. So I put them first. “Crip niggas / Blood niggas” and I caught flack from that when I was 23 years old. My homies were like “Why you saying Crip niggas first, homie?” I caught a few fades. A couple niggas was mad. I made it through but I did that because I’m not selfish. I did that for my city. So the red CD and the blue CD are a week apart. People say, “Why you split up the CD?” Because I got two homies who got murdered in 100 Days 100 Nights shit and they died a week a part. So I split up the CDs, one red, one blue, one was a Blood, one was a Crip, and they both died out here in the streets. Both were fathers. Both left kids behind. Both dead by the senselessness to what gang violence is. I’m not saying stop banging or stop the violence or do this or do that because I’m a Blood. It’s Blood in Blood out. You can’t never change who I am.
DX: On the topic of gang life in Compton, you said to The Breakfast Club in 2011. “It’s not really a gang thing. At this point it’s funny. The real gangsters are gone, old, dead or in jail or just chillin. But they are far and in between these days. They’re doing back flips and wearing snapbacks. That’s over for that. You’re safe. You can walk through the ghetto with whatever you want on and the worst thing that will happen is that you’ll get hit with a flying Chris Brown move.” That sounds like a stark difference from where we are now with 100 Days 100 Nights. What happened within the past 4 years in your opinion to cause this change in your perspective?
Game: What’s happened is that gang banging has made a resurgence. I try to pinpoint why, how, when, where it happened but I can’t, man. I’ve just noticed that it was real fun a few years ago as far as Toxic and day parties in LA. The last 10 months, niggas in LA been tripping, homie. I don’t know, man. Maybe it started when Dell Dog got murdered. I feel like ever since Dell Dog got murdered niggas been tripping. That’s it. That’s just my timeline. Rest in peace to him. He’s one of the super OG Crip homies that did it on a level that niggas wish that they could do it. LA’s tricky like that. I really don’t have an answer to where or why it changed but I remember LA was calm for a minute and now we’re approaching the holiday season. This is when LA gets all the way funky. It’s been a change out here. Everybody stay safe.
DX: I think one of the reasons your fan base is so rabid is that you do exercise social responsibility. I think the Robin Hood Project is genius. People think it takes a lot to make someone else’s life better.
Game: The one’s that are the most touching are the senseless child killings. When a kid catches a stray bullet that hits close to home. When I first started the Robin Hood Project I would only do funerals. So it was just anybody under the age of 18 down to one year old, if you died tragically, Game would come in and pay for the funeral. But what I noticed was that was putting a damper on my days and I was waking a little more sad than happy. I had to mix it in with helping kids with their college tuition or loaning somebody money, or Christmas presents or money to pay their cell phone bill. I felt like that mixed in with the tragic stuff kind of balanced out what I was doing as far as the Robin Hood Project. The reason I named it the Robin Hood Project was because when I was young, the Robin Hood cartoon was so dope. I thought it was dope how he would take from the castles and the kings and throw that shit in the hood and swag out and floss it. When I got older and it came time for me to be rich and give money back, I felt like Robin Hood the cartoon was dope. But I figured “Robin Hood Charities” or something had to be copyrighted. So I just called it the Project and we put it in the system and it was available so I ran with it.
It started with this little kid named John from Africa. He’s from Nigeria originally but he lived in Australia. I met him kicking a soccer ball around a grocery store parking lot when I was in Australia. I gave him $40 and to him it felt like he was a billionaire. I liked the feeling and said I was going to do it again tomorrow. I did it the next day in Sydney and I did it in Melbourne and that’s when Tiana Ricks, the little baby girl that got killed. She got killed while I was still in Australia and I was like, “You know what, I’m gonna pay for this funeral from here. And when I get back I’m gonna attend the funeral.” From there the Robin Hood Project was created. I went on Larry King. Going on Larry King was something dope to me. To do that and not to do it around anything rap related was pretty dope. From then it catapulted to me saying I wanted to give back a $1 million of my own money so I enlisted some of my friends, Drake, Khloe, La La and Top Dawg, the list goes on. Without them, I ended up giving away $1 million of my own money.
Game On Stitches, Possibly Facing Jail Time
DX: Why respond to Stitches on social media?
Game: Because he mentioned my kids. I didn’t like that, man. It never ceases to amaze me. Do niggas think that Game is some bitch-ass nigga or something like I won’t beat your ass or something? I’ve proved the shit time and time over again. What I’ve noticed at this point is a pattern of fuck niggas provoking me to get a lawsuit. At the end of the day, the $50,000 I’ll end up settling for and that I have to pay, the lawyers are gonna end up taking half of that. You promised your homies that you were gonna come up off of the Game so they gonna take half of that, so you got $12,500. You got baby mama and kids, so you can break down half of that. So $6,000 after that, you gonna buy yourself some Yeezys for $2,200. So you walk away with $3,800. What the fuck you gonna do with that? So you wanted your ass whooped for some Yeezys and a pocket full of cash that, once you buy some jeans, a few burgers and go to a steakhouse, you’re back broke but your ass is whoop’d and you’re famous for getting your ass whoop’d. That’s the cool shit now? C’mon, bro. Don’t use me for the shit because I’ll whoop your ass. Some Yeezys and some burgers? That’s the standard for Hip Hop niggas.
Anyway, without paying the clown too much attention, I’m gonna let him whoop his own ass because Game got love everywhere and people around. 40 Glocc taught me a valuable lesson. You put your hands on a nigga that you thought was straight and now they get on the stand and point at you, bro. I’ll probably end up going to jail for the shit that I’ve been doing recently and I’m gonna have to sit down. Other niggas gonna be out still on the internet pretending to be whatever it is they pretending and I’m gonna be sitting down drinking juice boxes and shit and eating nasty sandwiches because I had to prove to a nigga that I was Game. So I’m just gonna be Game. I ain’t doing shit to niggas no more because they call the police and they sue niggas. I’m done with that shit. I learned my lesson. These niggas is not gonna be 100. They gonna sue and they gonna call the police.
DX: You’re potentially facing three years. Do you think you’ll be sentenced?
Game: I don’t even think about it, dog. I got a good lawyer and he’s gonna do his thing. I think if a sentence is handed down, Game gonna turnaround, I’ma connect my wrists and I’m gonna put on my handcuffs and I’m gonna do what I gotta do as a man. The only thing that sort of concerns me is being absent from children for a second. I don’t like the idea of that. But you gotta do what you gotta do as a man. Ain’t nobody tell me to punch that guy. He had an agenda, too. I think it was a civil agenda but still, I’m mid-30s, I should’ve been a little more composed. I should’ve kept my hands to myself. So the consequences of that, I’m probably gonna have to sit down for a minute if I got to. If I gotta sit down for a minute, I’m gonna do it with all due respect to everything and who I am. Then I get out. I ain’t murdered nobody. I ain’t serving crack to the President or nothing. We’ll see what that is. We’ll cross that bridge when we get to it, but I’m a man. I’m gonna stand up behind everything that I’ve done in my life and I’m gonna keep it like that until I die.