Interview – The COVID-19 pandemic has crippled the music industry and brought it to its proverbial knees — no stadium shows, no expansive tours, nothing.

Consequently, Redman has decided to push the release date back for his highly anticipated album Muddy Waters 2, the follow-up to the 1996 original. In April 2018, Redman told HipHopDX backstage at a Red Rocks show he was planning to let the album rip that year, but plans clearly changed.

Speaking to DX’s Kyle Eustice last week, Redman explained, “You have to understand that I’m a self-contained artist. That means I engineer everything right here in my house that I’m talking from. I engineer, I write the music and I mix in my house. What I learned from Def Jam — because I’m a Def Jam baby — I learned all my tutelage on how to put out music through Def Jam.

“The only thing now that’s missing is me having a date and me rushing when they want me to put it out. I’m able to move on my own time. Last time I talked to you, I thought I was ready, but I wasn’t. A couple of months ago, I knew I was ready to put the album out, but COVID hit. I’m like, ‘I want to be able to be out there to promote the album, not sit from a couch doing interviews.'”

Redman is actually grateful the COVID pause has allowed him to fine tune the album. Normally, he’s touring like a Tasmanian devil, but quarantine has given him a time to finally slow down.

“When COVID came, I had to go back and hold the album up, but I got a chance to go back and listen to it,” he said. “There’s a lot of things that I changed now. I’m glad I didn’t even put it out when I wanted to because I could make this album even 100 percent better.”

When it is time to roll out Muddy Waters 2, which he hopes will drop in March 2021, he’s vowed to take it back to the ’90s in terms of promo.

“It’s not even just the music,” he explained. “Nowadays, I want to go back to bringing out the whole full movie of things. I’m going to have my gear. I’m going to have my script, my videos done, my gear, my clothes, my ashtray, rim and everything. I’m going to have the Muddy Waters everything lined up instead of dropping the album and then saying, ‘OK, why don’t we do this? Why don’t we do that?’ No, I’m going to have it done. Even this time right now, I don’t plan on dropping Muddy Waters until March, but even dropping it in March, I’m still cutting it close right now.

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“The reason I’m doing that is because I want to show young artists, ‘Listen, this is how we used to put out an album.’ We used to have teasers. We used to have commercials. We used to have the clothes. We wasn’t just dropping an album on the internet and saying, ‘Oh shit, the album’s out,’ even though that’s a wave. Beyoncé started that wave like just putting out an album like, ‘Oh shit, she dropped an album’ and she did big with it and a couple of other people did it. But I want to take it back. That’s the reason I didn’t drop it way back in the time I told you.”

Even though there’s a chance the industry could still be on hold next March, Redman remains optimistic.

“I think around by March, I think we will have moved into a more comfortable state on how we’re supposed to manifest because we can’t go through a whole ‘nother year of just this,” he said. “I’m thinking around by then we’ll have a little leniency. Bottom line is me and Meth, we have our shows. We have so many shows that people have to book a year ahead of time. We have people that booked shows already and we didn’t get to do it. We still owe them money. Believe me, they’re waiting for that first door to open to get us back in to do shows.

“I guess once the world gets back in order, once we start doing our little shows, I’m going to still give a date. But I’m hoping around March and June things will let up and if it don’t, I’m going to still drop this bitch anyway because 4/20 is coming and I got to be doing shows and I need this money.”