In an interview celebrating the 20th anniversary of “Get Rich Or Die Tryin’”, 50 Cent talks about being a rapper and a media mogul, tries to make sense out of “the best rappers” lists, and shares the best advice he’s ever got.
MSNBC’s Ari Melber is a big fan of Fifty’s and he knows how to make an interview with him interesting for people from all walks of life. His previous interview on the programme has become the second most watched, gaining more views than conversations with Bill Gates and Robert DeNiro.
— 50cent (@50cent) February 16, 2023
It is worth watching in its entirety, as you can see even from excerpts where Fif was talking about Eminem.
Recently, Billboard placed Eminem at No.5 on its list of the best rappers ever. Fifty doesn’t feel like these lists work. What are the criteria? The best at what? Talent? Who do we measure? Sells? So, is it about business? Fif disagrees that the Top 3 on that list — Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, Nas — can be placed above all other rappers. He says:
They are still good artists but not of all time, no.
Who should be number one then? 50 Cent doesn’t have an answer:
I don’t know. I don’t know who should be the number one artist. It depends on the time period. To me, how do you not look at No.1 selling artist if we are in business? If we are in business then they have to look at No.1 selling artist. Because it’s a business.
I’m thinking about Em when I’m saying that. ‘Cause he sold 90 million records. When you see these Lamborghinis, Ferraris, Bentleys, and stuff like that, there are no Lamborghinis and Ferraris for you to buy from hip hop culture if there is no consumer base. If they don’t see where they fit into the culture then there is no reason to support and buy it. So, right now them guys at home are like. “Oh, Fifty just loves Eminem so much!” Yeah, I love him to death, I do. I love him to death. But I am looking at it and I am saying, why would people be interested in it enough to consume it without it being marketed to them directly for them to feel like they are part of it?
The lightning round wrapped up the interview. The rules are that answers have to be a word or a sentence, but Fifty is a talker so he eventually drifted away to telling stories again:
Eminem — the best.
Lloyd Banks – cool.
Tony Yayo – That’s my boy. Loyalty.
50 Cent, the rapper — still got it.
50 Cent, the TV producer — just keep going.
Future – talent.
Nas – the best.
Jay-Z – good business.
“Get Rich Or Die Tryin’” – classic.
The best advice I‘ve ever got was… — Jimmy Iovine told me. He pointed at the TV. I delivered a record, “My Life”. It was me, Eminem, and Adam Levine. Both Em and Adam Levine were the highest-selling people in the world, and they [the label] were telling me they couldn’t get a record play. And I was like, “You couldn’t get the records play? Why?!” I think they were angry with me because I created sms audio while they had beats. And they didn’t want to support it. If they supported it musically it would be financially creating their competitor. So, they couldn’t get the record play. But he pointed to the TV. And I pay attention to detail so much when I’m around him. So I started looking at the television. Doing something there.
Watch the interview below: