This week, Hip Hop dealt with feuds, emancipation and Logic. Conflict was at the center of Ol’ Dirty Bastard’s widow and her fight with Rock the Bells over a digital performance by ODB at this year’s festival. Emancipation was at the core of the conversation between Jaden Smith and his parents, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett-Smith. Finally, Logic was getting praise for his latest effort, “Young Sinatra: Welcome to Forever.” This was the week in Hip Hop.
Ol’ Dirty Bastard’s Widow Explains Disappointment With Rock The Bells
Within days after it was announced that Ol’ Dirty Bastard would be “appearing” in a digital performance at this year’s Rock the Bells festival, his widow objected to the plans. Claiming sole ownership of the estate of Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Icelene Jones said she was “disappointed” by the festival organizers.
In an interview with HipHopDX, Icelene Jones explained her feelings about the matter.
“I’m the administrator [of ODB’s estate] and the only authority to give anyone permission to do anything like this—any likeness, any music,” Jones shared. “They need to come to me. I’m so available. I’m accessible. I’m easy to contact. I just want to make that understood. I’m a nice person. It’s just that people are doing things without my knowledge.”
O.D.B’s son also spoke with HipHopDX about this and said they want to control all facets of the performance.
“We want all of the control,” he stated in the interview. “I would love to see the contract with the paper on it. The money, that’s big business. We talking about money, that’s capitalization. We definitely want full control and authority over that.”
Rock the Bells told HipHopDX that they are aware of a cease and desist order from Icelene Jones and will address the matter soon.
“We are aware of the cease and desist order and will release a more in-depth statement next week. It’s our goal and desire to do this virtual performance the correct way; it’s important for all parties to feel right and good about this, so we are working on it,” the organizers said.
Earlier in the week, Chang Weisberg, the head of Guerilla Union, which organizes Rock the Bells, spoke with HipHopDX and shared that he would not let anybody down with this show.
“If Tomica [Wright], Bone [Thugs-N-Harmony], RZA and Cherry [Jones] don’t approve of what we’re doing, I’ll be the first one to tell everybody, ‘I’m sorry. We didn’t do it.’ I can’t do this. ‘If you’re disappointed, let’s not do it.’ But at the same time, knowing who I am and the team of people around me, there’s no fuckin’ way we’re gonna let anybody down. It’s that simple. That’s my vision. Until we get there, my head’s down in the ground. I’m not even gonna look up for air. I’m gonna make sure we change music history those nights.”
Logic Releases “Young Sinatra: Welcome To Forever” To Critical Acclaim
This week found Logic releasing his latest project, Young Sinatra: Welcome To Forever. The response to the record was positive. HipHopDX’s Edwin Ortiz rated the mixtape a “Free Album,” which is the highest possible praise for a mixtape on the site.
In an interview with HipHopDX’s Michael Nguyen, Logic explained the significance of “Welcome To Forever,” talking about why it is his most cohesive project to date.
“With Welcome To Forever, it’s hands down the most cohesive project I’ve ever created. It’s Logic more than ever. What I did on the tape was me finding myself. I remember people being like, ‘He sounds like Drake; he sounds like Cole; he sounds like Nas; he sounds like Big L.’ It was all comparisons of I sound like this, I sound like that—because one, those are the people I was inspired by. You can hear ‘Pac in J. Cole. You can hear Canibus in J. Cole. When Cole first came out, they said he sounded like Lupe [Fiasco]. In actuality, he sounds nothing like Lupe. That was because he’s the most relevant rapper that you can say was kind of in that lane of just real lyricism at the time. I got a lot of these comparisons. I was honing my craft to create a whole bunch.”
Jaden Smith Wanted To Be Emancipated But Changed His Mind
News about the relationship between 14-year-old Jaden Smith and parents Will Smith and Jada Pinkett-Smith made the headlines this week. In a recent interview, father Will Smith said the young actor/rapper wanted to be emancipated.
“He says, ‘Dad, I want to be emancipated.’ I know if we do this, he can be an emancipated minor, because he really wants to have his own place, like ooh. That’s the backlash. On the other side, if kids just want to have command of their lives, I understand,” Will Smith shared with The Sun.
But on “Ellen,” Jaden himself said he isn’t about to leave his parents’ home.
“I’m not going anywhere,” Jaden said on the show. “The thing that people don’t get is everything at his house is free.”
The interview on “Ellen,” can be found below.
The father and son duo are prepping for the release of their next film together, After Earth, which will be out on May 31.
Other items of note: