XXLMag.com: “Up in restaurants with mandolins and violins,” what was some of his favorite restaurants?
Cease: We used to go this spot I think it was on 49th and 9th, it was called Jezebel’s. We used to go there a lot, eat from there. It was one of the spots that had the fuckin’ swingin’ chairs and shit. It was one of those real like fancy spots. We used to go there and there was this other spot we used to go to for wings in our neighborhood, right there on Washington and Dean. It was this new restaurant they just hooked up, put chairs in there and decorative and sit outside to eat. We used to go there just to get the wings and the burgers. But Jezebel, that was B.I.G.’s spot.
“If you knew, what this game will do to you been in this shit since ’92 look at all the bullshit I been through,” what was like his most stressful period?
His most stressful period, beside the ’Pac shit was probably with the label transition. When Puff got fired from Uptown [Records], ’cause you know at that minute he didn’t have a deal. So you went from having a deal, about to have this prosperous career to Puff getting fired and you don’t know where you’ll land from there.
“Fuck a few female stars or two,” actresses or singers?
Singers. [You know] Faith, Kim, she was a rapper. He knew a few, but it was behind closed doors. I can’t verify them. But me knowing B.I.G., my man was pimpin’. There was a few that crept around when he was tucked in somewhere.
“No aspiration to quit the game.” So was he gonna keep doing albums?
B.I.G. had this plan of doing five albums, then he was gonna quit and just let us run the game after that. He said he was gonna do five albums and he had three titles for the albums before anything. He had Ready to Die, he already had Life After Death and then he had Born Again. He was just setting these up in his head already. Ready to Die was that ‘I just don’t give a fuck.’ This shit is from the inside looking out. Life After Death was like, ‘I made it. I got life. I’m from the outside looking in’ and Born Again is just the total flip, totally different man. Starting over, there’s no more Timbs, no hoodies. It’s suits and suitcases, it’s mob, it’s mafia. Who knows what would have came after Born Again. It would have stretched out, once he started that M.A.F.I.A. shit. It was going from mafia to The Commission with me, Jay-Z, Charlie Baltimore, him, Un, and Puff. Who knows where it would have went from there. That’s why you see all them last couple of photos, he’s suited up. He was straight telling us, “You ain’t gonna be rockin’ no Timbs anymore. None of that shit. You about to put on some hard bottoms, slacks, suits. We gonna go in there on some mob shit.” We walk in there with suitcases on some real life Commission. That’s why he started talkin’ that real mob shit. “If he don’t like me hit him while wifey was with him…”
“All them niggas I got to fight one.” Has there ever been a Junior M.A.F.I.A. brawl?
At The Tunnel, when B.I.G. was coming up. Every nigga from Brooklyn was in there fightin’. Some situation happened when we was beefin’ with some niggas, D-Roc was actually beefin’ with the nigga. Nigga said somethin’ to B.I.G., and they wasn’t gonna let B.I.G. do nothin’. But they didn’t control this one and the minute he got somethin’ out about B.I.G., B.I.G. just hooked off on him. The minute the nigga saw that, I kid you not every nigga that was from Brooklyn in that muthafucka started going nuts. It wasn’t hard to spot B.I.G. This nigga two and some change and 6’2″. He was tall. Nigga must of said some greasy shit to B.I.G. ’cause you just see B.I.G. [do this] face and once he hit him, any nigga that was with us started hittin’. Roc, Money L, [etc.] it was a wrap. Every nigga that was from Brooklyn was thumpin’. You could probably ask some random [person] that been around at that time, and they’ll tell you.
“Bone and B.I.G. nigga die slowly,” B.I.G. was the first East coast dude to use that flow and kill it. Did he tell you he was gonna use it?
Nah, that was the first time he actually, when he did that song, make everyone leave the room. He used to never tell anybody to leave the room when he did vocals. He was like “All y’all got to bounce, you got to step out on this one. You’ll hear this when I’m done.” “I gotta sink in with this one, I’ll be quick.” We just went in the lounge and kicked it and smoked and 20 minutes later he came back. “Come here and listen to this.” It probably wouldn’t have been as impactful if we was there to hear the punches; it was one of the quickest rhymes he did. Nobody could go in there when he did that verse, not Puff, me, nobody. He wanted everybody out the room when he did that verse. So we don’t know how many times he punched, how many times he did it. It was short and sweet, though, and that’s what came out when we heard that shit.