It’s been 17 years since the untimely passing of rapper Biggie Smalls. With lingering questions surrounding the details of his demise, the unwavering love from his supporters remain intact. Junior Mafia will be paying homage to their comrade, Biggie, through ventures of their own in March.
MzHanaG: What’s Junior Mafia been working on?
Lil Cease: We’ve been putting together “Ridin’ for The King” a dedication mixtape to Big from all the Mafia members. It will be available March 9th on DatPiff.com.
MzHanag: Aside from JM, how has your company Hard Body Fitness been doing?
Lil Cease: I put out a DVD to show people what I did to get in shape from ‘07 until now. I’ll be putting out more videos and workout gear, very soon.
MzHanaG: With regard to some of Big’s other associates, do you have an opinion on how Puff, for example, has looked out for Big’s family since his passing?
Lil Cease: From what I know, I guess… I don’t hear anyone complaining. He has his own relationship with them, and I got mine.
MzHanaG: Still being part of the Brooklyn community, what’s your opinion of how it’s progressed from when you and JM were coming up?
Lil Cease: The neighborhood is definitely safer now, and more progressive and diverse. I think it’s better now that we have the arena (the Barclay). It’s brought diversity, equity, employment, and more celebrities to Brooklyn. Back in the day the neighborhood was f***** up. If Big was here, he would embrace the Barclay and appreciate performing somewhere besides Madison Square Garden.
MzHanaG: What’s it like seeing one of Brooklyn’s own significantly branch out (Jay Z)?
Lil Cease: I wasn’t surprised to see Hov break down the barriers. He just got better with time. Hip-hop changed; suddenly everyone wanted to get endorsed by hip hop – Pepsi and McDonalds, for example. Hov came in the game under his own indie label (I saw that same ambition in Puff). Being from Brooklyn you have to salute that. It’s the county of Kings. We breed the best!
MzHanaG: Do you have any words for Kim with regard to her recent pregnancy announcement?
Lil Cease: I haven’t seen Kim in 10 years, but it’s all love. Congrats to Kim.
MzHanaG: Will there be a mixtape release party?
Bristal: We will definitely have a release party, and celebrate the life of Big. Release party info to follow at a later date.
Lil Cease: Its not the best day in the world for us – or for a celebration. It’s the day Big passed. But I think Big wouldn’t be mad to see all us original cats together again. Aside from rap, these would still be my friends. We went to school and came up together. We were able to travel the world and make money together and we’ll turn March 9th in to something positive.
MzHanaG: Will Kim be there?
Lil Cease: In the past, I’ve tried to reach out and fix things and I always make her part of March 9th or May 21rst events, and have said everything I could possibly say. That door is always open if she wants to talk or make music. She’s part of our history. And she knows that. It’s okay if she comes and “sits with the boys” as she used to say.
MzHanaG: Being part of hip-hop history and working with a true legend, Biggie Smalls, what’s your advice for indie artists looking for record deals?
Lil Cease: At the end of the day, just make good music. If it’s catchy, people will look for you. A lot of people don’t need the majors. If you’re active on the social networks, sell your stuff at the Mom & Pop stores and stay away from 360 deals (that take more than they give), you can get more of what you want. People like Justin Beiber, Drake and Trinidad James got famous first on the internet. Majors are better for artists who are already established. Stay savvy and stay busy. Nowadays you don’t need to have a record deal to be successful. You can set up your own YouTube channel, promote your own videos and become something. Record labels are on the internet. A&Rs are on the internet looking for artists who have views. Just make that good music.
Bang: “Ridin’ for The King” is a free album. It’s raw, it’s dope and it’s gona be worthy! Stay tuned for first single “Brooklyn” available everywhere. Mafia Dons, Salute!
Additional Press: http://starforcehiphop.com/the-mafia-dons-return-march-9th/