BILLY SUNDAY is one of the renowned writers from the mega-popular hip-hop website BILLY SUNDAY relishes his 'old man in the club' status and some people have confused his lifetime love of rap music with hate because of his irreverence to some of hip-hop's current icons. BILLY assures us that there isn't any hate in his blood, it's just that most people can't handle the truth...

dallaspennjay.jpgI should prah'lee introduce myself to y'all since we are going to be hanging together this week. My name's Willam H. Sunday. The H stands for Havier. My mom's liked the sound of the name but she didn't know that it was spelled with an 'X'. I like to tell people that the H stands for Hip-Hop since it's what I believe in. If you ever have the misfortune to be locked up or in the military you will learn that names are secondary to how the government refers to you. Your social security tax I.D. is your real name. So in the meantime while we are hanging out at XXL this week you can call me Billy Sunday. That'll work just fine.

Were you one of the millions of people that got all moist when the official news of JAY-Z returning to the recording studio was announced? It seemed like a holiday here in New York as all the commercial radio station deejays were gushing and shining the spoons that they would use to hold the Jigga man's nuttsachs (no RuPaul). I'm no JAY-Z fan, but I am far from one of his detractors. I enjoyed the drama and showmanship of his anniversary concert at Radio City. I had a few small criticisms with the presentation, but the overall show and the follow up mini-concert was great hip-hop. That's why I question JAY-Z's decision to return to the sound booth. When Michael Jordan returned to basketball as a Washington Wizard it was obvious that the game he had been so dominant in had changed. There was a moment when Allen Iverson did one of his famous crossover moves and the God that had been Air Jordan was reduced to a helpless mortal. I wonder if that is the image that we will see of JAY-Z. Will he be reduced to a caricature of himself? The once proud and arrogant emcee now just a vignette of the imaginary drug dealer turned artist.

I wonder if JAY-Z was pressured by the tall Israelis at Universal/Island Def Jam, that in order to retain his lofty position he had to make a projected sales quota. Def Jam has released some good albums this year even though none will make it to the list of classics. The Ghostface and Roots disks were prah'lee the two best Hip-Hop albums of the year. With a new Nas offering scheduled for early in the forth quarter Def Jam could have finished the year with presumably three albums in the top five of hip-hop 2006. So why does Jigga turn all this news on its ear and announce his album release before the year is done?

Could JAY-Z be running out of money? Keep in mind that JAY-Z has been reported to be the owner of a clothing and sneaker company, a high end spirits manufacturer, a basketball team, a real estate development, and a chain of high end nightclubs. In order to manage all of these endeavors and run the most venerable rap music label he must be hemorrhaging money just from his staffing invoices alone. Think about the millions he must pay annually in taxes for all of these businesses. Think about the millions he must be losing in complimentary packages that all of these businesses endow to celebrities. You don't think JAY-Z makes Bleek pay for his Roc-A-Wear clothing do you? Rumor has it that JAY does charge Bleek for the courtside tickets to see the Nets, that's why we never see them there together. JAY-Z has actually been losing money recently with the downturn in the real estate market. If he didn't release this album we might see him forced to return to the lifestyle of selling drugs to the disenfranchised, impoverished, narcotic dependent neighbors that he knew from the Marcy Houses.

So please buy JAY-Z's new album because Beyoncé's handbags and weaves cost a whole lotta money.