FEATURE: Jim Jones, Harlem Renaissance

From hype man to front man, you gotta love Jim Jones’ hustle. Hip-hop has literally seen him go from the background to the lime light in a matter of a mere few years and the Harlemite is loving every minute of it. He embraces the controversy, some would even say he feeds on it. But no matter what your opinion of the Dipset capo is, chances are you have an opinion on him and that’s exactly what he wants.

From his highly publicized family feud with his former crew leader, to collecting checks as a record label executive, to having his very own stage play Hip Hop Monologues: Inside the Life & Mind of Jim Jones, the industry has seen a lot of Jimmy recently. XXLMag.com caught up with Jones during a rare moment of down time as he reminisced on his skateboarding days, the new direction for his music, why he’s still “disappointed” with Cam and why he wants to totally leave the music industry.

XXLMag: Pray IV Reign is out right now and this record has a different feel than your previous stuff, a little more R&B, a little more radio friendly. Was that the formula or did it just happen like that?

Jim Jones: It happened like that and I was also trying to create songs like that. I just tried to mix it up a little bit. I’m trying to make a little more money this time. I’ve seen a lot. I’ve experienced different things, so that’s what happens when you grow.

XXL: You’ve had a much bigger presence and push for this album than your previous releases. Is that a reflection of where you are now in your career?

Jones: That’s because Columbia paid me all that fucking money [laughs]. Them big ass machines all they want is the biggest and richest artists. They got that power. I couldn’t wait to get in there and abuse that machine and go crazy with it. That’s a reflection of what you see. Shout out to Koch because without them I wouldn’t be here but the step to Columbia was just for these reasons, so people could say that. They got that marketing strategy and spending more of that marketing money so I appreciate that people are noticing that.

XXL: One of your more personal joints off the album is the “Frenemies” track, where you address the split with you and Cam. What made you wanna put that situation in the music?

Jones: It’s music, it’s rap music. This is what we living. My life is on camera. My life is my music so what am I hiding, nah mean ? I had to tell people the answers sometimes, especially when they know what it’s all about, ya dig? So I just wanted people to understand it from my point of view and understand a little bit more some of the reasons that some of these things are going on. But for the most part, we trying to make this happen. Shout out to Cam, shout to Freekey Zekey, Juelz Santana.

XXL: It sounds like on the track like you had some emotion about the situation, like you almost felt hurt. Is that accurate to say?

Jones: More disappointed than hurt, ya dig ? Being disappointed and being hurt are two different things. Your girlfriend can hurt you. Everything else is a disappointment.

XXL: Were you also disappointed when Cam was asked about you and he replied “who is that?”

Jones: Um, nah. I know what that was about. I wasn’t mad at that. What I’ma be mad at that for ? That’s the media, c’mon. That was just him being Cam. That’s Jason Bourne. He watch movies a lot and shit like that. I mean, of course it’s publicity. My album’s coming out and then all of a sudden he pops up with an album. It’s all marketing, baby. There’s no rules to this. We both cut from the same cloth. We both got similar strategies so hey, why not?

XXL: Ok, on another note, I know you got your skate team Dip Skate that people in hip-hop circles don’t really talk about too much. What do you have planned for that?

Jones: I’m trying to get the whole X Games thing going with Dip Skate and everything so that’s what I been focusing our energy on. We been quiet for a minute but I’m trying to get it together. That’s a lucrative business, nah mean?

XXL: What’s your interest in the skate culture ? Can we catch you on a skateboard around Harlem?

Jones: Nah, nah. I’m not skating. If I see a skateboard I might jump on it and ride around for a minute but for the most part I’m not skating anymore. I used to do that when I was younger, I was pretty good at it. I had fun with it and now I do business with it. But I still love the sport of it, I love the X Games, I love how they go crazy. I’m an adrenaline junkie.

XXL: You got a lot of things going on from your music to stage plays to movies and running a label. Where do you want all of these things to ultimately take you ? Where are you trying to ultimately go?

Jones: Ultimately, my goal is just to get out the hood, and by the hood I mean the industry, period. If I could get into acting and make some more money I would love to but I wanna just sit down and cool, but I’m hustling right now. I want my son to be able to not want for nothing, nah mean. That’s my ultimate goal. My ultimate goal is to move to Aruba and cool out. Put my feet in the sand all day. –Anthony Roberts

  • BeerGangsta

    Leave that bullshit in Harlem. I am a Nas fan therefore Fuck Dipset. This bitch has never went Gold or Platium. All they songs are garbage. Fuck being a Dipset fan.

    • Jdubb

      lets b real. jim is leavin cuz hes washed up. frenimies was bull shit cam didnt do shit to your everyone knos he tried to start a fake beef wit cam and he wasnt cool wit it. so while cam was “missing” your gonna talk shit about him? jim wasnt shit without cam and dipset doesnt need jim. jim needs dipset. JIM JONES IS THE BIGGEST PUSSY IN HARLEM

  • PARIS PERSHUN

    JIMMY!!!!….

    (LEANS BACK AND TURNS “END OF THE ROAD” WAY WAY WAY WAY WAY WAY WAY WAY THE FUCK UP- ON MY WAY TO CHURCH)

    • HERM

      Ah dope track.

  • D.M.

    He as good a rapper as them COONS yall got on the cover of the new xxl. But just like them he a hustla and @ this point in hip hop thats all that matters. SLAUGHTER HOUSE JULY 7TH THE RETURN OF HIPHOP!

    • LB

      PLEASE…leave the fuckin “COON” shit to yaself man! I don’t care if ya black or white (which, you’re most likely an Italian usin that word). Straight-up man. Allow people to be around (in person) to either smack the shit outcha or turn their backs before usin that word.

  • gkid12345

    @beergangsta

    Jim jones actually has a Gold plaque for his previous album hustlers pome.

  • MR. UNDI$PUTED THE MOGUL

    HOW OLD IS THIS INTERVIEW? HIS ALBUM COMPLETELY FLOPPED & COLUMBIA ISN’T GOING TO SPEND ANOTHER DIME TO PROMOTE IT! IF HE EVER RELEASES ANOTHER CD IT’LL BE BACK ON E1 RECORDS(KOCH’S NEW NAME). WHY DOES XXL KEEP DOING STORIES ON THIS NO TALENT ASS LOSER! ANY HYPE HE’S EVER GENERATED WAS BASED OFF OF SOME FAKE BEEF, HE PERPETUATED WITH JAY-Z. HE’S HAD 1 HIT SONG OUT OF 4 CD’S!! GIVE IT UP ALREADY!!

    PEACE & GET MONEY!!!
    MOGUL GAME ’09!!!!!!

    • DetroitDraper

      That is a true story. After the massive flopping of this album Columbia’l never put him back out. So he’ll be back to E1 soon

  • Pssssst

    jimmy a disloyal bitchass faggot. the world is tired of niggas like you. wish you nothing but bad health you dirty looking shithead. ooooooooooowwwwwwwwwww!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! KILLA!

  • John

    with this album it showed that without max b he can’t put out a hit single :s, i used to like jim jones music but i can’t deny his new album is trash except few songs which leaked before the release :s

  • yo yo yo

    jim jones = worst rapper outta new york ever

    • Sleepy Wonder

      Don’t Insult MIMS! LOL

  • Gerv

    Pullin a Bow Wow album flops then you don’t wanna rap no more.You will only be missed by people that followed your bullshit trends you didn’t start.White rock’n roll and heavy metal artist been wearing tight jeans and scarves with skeleton shit all over it.In other words your whole career never went bigger than ballin and that was only because of the beat.Get over it fans Dipset will never be what it was in the past.They becoming like the WU but didn’t last half as long or have as many good solo albums from the crew.Doomed to only have videos on worldstarhiphop when bet leave em alone.

  • http://xxl gside

    And give Bow credit he went gold and platinum Jimmy never did he just act like he a muti platinum artist .He just act like he more important than he is I hate nigga’s like that.

    • BGZ

      True, but Bow did his numbers on majors, and wouldn’t get shit from the songs being played because he didn’t write them; Jimmy sold respectable numbers on Koch and pro’ly stiffed all his ghostwriters (S. Bundles, literally; Max B et al).

      Not that I protect the motherfucka, Jimmy look old old and tired on the picture above; give it up son, go back to Boney M.

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  • King

    this fool is a has been…still performing.”balling” a 2006 record..what a waste of space..not certain his last album event broek the 100K mark…fucking the shit went triple tracing paper.

  • gdep

    how old is this clown 40-45?

  • Sleepy Wonder

    Is This The “Features Section” Or The Brand New “DDN Section” First It Was Spencer Pratt With His Stupid Ass Interview, Kanye With His Book And Now This Fool….

  • newyawka631

    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
    COSIGN EVERYBODY ABOVE ME…..DIS IZ A DISLOYAL FAGGOT…SO IZ JUELZ SANTANA…I DON’T FUCKZ WIT DEM N-E MORE….HARLEM:DIARY OF A SUMMER IS A HOT ALBUM THOUGH….BUT DATZ BEFORE WE SAW HIS TRU COLORZ,U NEVA GET ON STAGE,WITH WHO YA MANZ IZ BEEFIN WIT…KILLA GOOD MOVE,MAH DUDE…..SHOW DEEZ COWARDZ,U DON’T BITE DA HAND DAT FEEDZ YA

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  • dark vanilla

    Fuck Jim Jones.

  • mike

    This dude did not just say Aruba?? Did he!? Jimmy take that tattoo of a flag off of your arm, cause you is fraudulent to the island kid…

  • katastrophee

    All of y’all are wasting time and energy. These are the same people that put Soulja Boy on the cover. They won’t get it until they end up going under, like KING did.

  • Keyser Soze

    I think its funny how Jones thinks hes a star!! LOL Cam drops Crime Pays independently with no promotion and sells the same as Jim!! Plus Crime Pays is a dope album! Pray iv Reign is straight garbage!

  • TWHYTE5BANGIN

    Just as I thought nothing or at least mostly jones hate.

    Niggas need to get up on his tracks and off that dumb ass trap/AYE! music thats dominatin shit right now.

    Jones a garbage rapper?….NAH FAR FROM IT

    Dont believe me go listen to:
    J.I.M.M.Y,WHAT YOU BEEN DRANKIN ON
    PULLING ME BACK,RAIN,EMOTIONLESS,G GONE BRAZY,ROLL WITH YOU,GOOD SHIT,REPPIN TIME,TRIPPIN,LET IT OUT

    Yall niggas be hatin cuz some of that real g shit you herb ass buster type niggas cant relate to this dude make music for the streets,clubs,ladies(PEEP: SUMMER WIT MIAMI,BLOW THE BANK,PRECIOUS etc.),gangsters,hustlers

    U CANT HATE A NIGGA DAT MAKE ARTISTS FAMOUS EXAMPLE:
    Kid Cudi: DAY N NITE
    Byrd Gang
    PUSSY ASS Max B
    Purple City Byrd Gang

    CHECK YA HISTORY DIS NIGGA BEEN AROUND LONGER DEN MOST YALL LIL HOPPERS BEEN ALIVE

  • http://www.plasticsquirtguns.blogspot.com thoreauly77

    someone guess who the bigger dumbass is: the interviewer that didn’t do enough research to know dipskate isn’t a skateboarding company, or the ceo of the company not knowing?

  • joyce

    wow to the ass wipe that want jim to scrub the p.r. flag off his arm. the nigga’s peoples (moms) is from aruba and he still got family there. let me guess he only can represent one part of his family.. at that puerto rico is poorer than harlem that island is bullshit and plus aruba is a better place to live and visit. grow up, when the last time u heard of a hot puerto rican bitch or dude they washed up all the other caribbean islands are poppin’ . p.r . is considered the niggers of the west indies and not in a good way… u people are not white or hott…get over it. Aruba all day.

  • Azhar

    TRASH!!!!!!!!!!

  • sisa

    Jim Jones has lost his shine. he will never be the same witout Killa..He was more Flavour Flav of the group. Dipset!

  • Me247

    Jimmy is ridiculous, waste of time.

  • D1

    jimmy rich dummies how much money u got haters!

  • mac the kid

    jim jones is a fool a 1 wid a big dick on his head i lykd dat nigga but wen i heard wat cam said bout him sayin he wanted to start a fake beef i 4fort fucking dick wart. na na nana na na is my tune but 4 real wit out max b he aint dog shit n i’m so wavy is my joint dats a njgga hu can make tunes rite der. its plan n simple jimmys justd bout money dats it he even say it in da interview. n dat tru wat newyawka631 said dat was sum pussy movements him n juelz did goin on stage wid 50 wen u know da nigga got beef wit cam.

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    We adore your blog theme can you tell us the name of it or where you downloaded it? cheers.

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