Do or die time

A bunch of the tracks from The Game’s sophomore outing Doctor’s Advocate leaked this week and I was more than a little surprised to discover that they’re hot. I have to admit, I seriously doubted that dude could pull it off.

It’s not that I thought Game lacked talent. (He’s no Young Hov, but he’s no Young Joc either.) I didn’t think he’d be lost without 50’s hooks and Dre’s beats. I didn’t care that he’s so emotional. (He may even be the most emotional rapper out. Next to the top dog of drama kings, Kanye, of course.) And I didn’t care that Game can’t spit a single verse without name-dropping famous rappers.

My low expectations for Doctor’s Advocate stemmed more from the fact that Jayceon Taylor has had a horrible year. Seriously. His life has been a fucking train wreck. And I keep waiting for his self-destructive streak to push him off the proverbial edge. It’s a bit like watching Pac spin out control after he got out of prison. It’s disturbing, particularly when you’re rooting for him.

In the November issue of XXL, Game bared all, sharing about his suicidal thoughts, about being unable to stop pummeling the world with his fists.  

Despite the negative impact on his career, Game simply cannot leave his beef with Five-O alone. [1] His G-U-Not campaign has been relentless, to the point of tediousness. And unlike 50, who clearly delights in beefing for sport, Game perpetually wears his heart on his sleeve. Stuff gets to him. A lot.

Then there’s also been the disbanding of his Black Wall Street crew, which has shrunk from 50 members to seven. Add to that a falling out with his brother Big Fase, a bunch of supernova romances, and getting booted off his mentor’s label, and what you have is the makings of a nervous breakdown. I keep waiting for dude to snap and go postal. Or else hurt himself.

And what does he do instead? He goes and makes a hot album. He mans up and makes a track like “Doctor’s Advocate” that faces the mess he’s made, and pushes past it with the sheer force of the music. Somehow, he refuses to cave under pressure.

The simple fact is that Game has something. He possesses that illusive quality that fascinates the public—particularly those of us in the Hip-Hop Generation—that potent combination of naked ambition, hard-headed rage, cocky swagger, and painful vulnerability. It might destroy him, but you never know, it might just save him too.

_______________________________________________________________________

[1] Just a thought, but why didn’t 50 sit Game down when they were recording The Documentary and be like, “You know, it’s not really cool to call me five-o”?

Unrelated: I caught up to Obie Trice last week.

  • BIG ROB

    Cant wait for that Doc. Adv. to drop Game is gonna show that hes the truth. West West Yall.
    Oh Yeah First Bitches!!!

  • http://www.myspace.com/poisonousdarthfc Poisonous Dart

    Damn it, Tara!

    Here you go writing an insightful, thoughtful piece about Game that didn’t mention anything about his joint “Soundscan”, his Vida Guerra diss or his apparent Superhead fetish? What exactly do you think this is? Legitimate hip hop journalism? (sarcasm alert for the slow)

    This is a refreshing read after the extremely ignorant shit Bol just posted, but his shit is up to 101 comments so what do I know?

    One.

  • Black London….

    Tara………..

    (GOING OFF TOPIC & at the risk of sounding repetive)

    It kinda validates most if not everything Bol stated in hes post:

    “Major record labels – who needs ‘em?”

    I read this article (once again…) over @ hitsdailydouble.com, about how MAJORS are operating?

    (what do you think?)

    MAJORS SORTING OUT THE NEW RULES OF ENGAGEMENT

    Revamped Guidelines Are Radically Altering the Way the Big Four Operate

    November 3, 2006

    Most major labels are presently deep into the process of planning their 2007 budgets and trying to figure out what aspects of the new business model will best enable them to be profitable in these challenging times. The current thinking involves several new guidelines that will take some getting used to for the staffs of the major labels, who in essence have to relearn their jobs. According to the execs we queried (each of whom asked to remain anonymous, for obvious reasons), these new realities include the following:

    Labels can no longer indiscriminately drill multiple oil wells in the hopes of hitting the occasional gusher:

    “In the good old days, we had the personnel and the deep pockets to simultaneously work any number of projects,” groused one veteran executive. “These days money’s tight and our staff is stretched so thin that it’s nearing the breaking point. So we have to be extremely judicious in terms of the projects we prioritize—and quite frankly, there are more and more records on our release schedule that don’t have a snowball’s chance in hell, and everybody knows it but the act, and sometimes the management.”

    The majors must quickly cut bait on their stiffs:

    We’ve seen it a number of times since the start of the fourth quarter—new albums from acts with proven track records that fall well short of expectations. “The conventional wisdom used to be that a new release had six-to-eight weeks and/or two singles to prove itself,” a marketing chief confided. “But now it’s more like the movie business—if you don’t meet or exceed projections, it’s ‘See ya! Next.’”

    Regarding new acts, labels must let the market speak rather than attempting to dictate to it:

    “Let’s face it,” one label head acknowledged, “the majors can no longer afford to be in the business of developing a number of artists at one time by taking a high-profile marketing approach.” Stated another exec: “You can’t anoint artists from the top of the label, like in the old days. My former president used to say, ‘This record’s a smash,’ and we’d drop everything, including a couple of million bucks, before we had any research to prove him right or wrong. Now that the powers to be have dropped my former president, we’re trying to make informed choices about which new act to chase by listening to the market and trying to see which ones raise their heads, because it takes all of our resources to chase potential hits. Sometimes we get lucky with a new band, but that’s because the kids know something we don’t and take an act to critical mass essentially without the label’s participation. In fact, the best way to kill momentum on a developing act is to overtly market to their core audience. These fans are turned off by anything that seems to be generated by a major label.” This new reality resembles a Zen riddle—the harder you push, the more resistance you encounter. Without question, the days of throwing money willy-nilly at new and developing acts to see which one sticks are long gone.

    http://www.hitsdailydouble.com/news/newsPage.cgi?news06397m01

  • Black London….

    **CORRECTION**

    (GOING OFF TOPIC & at the risk of sounding **repetive)

    **Repetitive

  • Bang

    game’s beats carry him. supposedly dre is sitll behind him. not mad tho, it’s hot a lot of his shit. just not on no outstanding shit right now. none of verses stand out too much unless he’s calling someone out. he likes that attention as much as 50

  • ALCALA

    great post! now i could go enjoy BORAT! in theaters TODAY.

  • http://www.myspace.com/corinnemq Corinne

    I just thank God that it never went pass “just thinking about it”, I rather have that than actually attempting it, that shits hard. I’ll be waiting till that release for real.Good thing there’s is music that you can express yourself with, that a good cope.

  • ALCALA

    the Doctor’s Advocate leak might destroy him but the album is actually pretty damn good(yes limewire is still up).my guess is around 400,000 first week.

  • http://www.myspace.com/corinnemq Corinne

    “Game’s gonna shine til his heart stops.”

    ^^^^ that shits real mami, it’s fucking deep.

  • http://www.myspace.com/corinnemq Corinne

    ^^^^ Even if you download his music, still get his album! We still have to support out artist.If we don’t, what will we have left?……..

  • SONNY CHEEBA

    ur a lost canadian…

  • yo

    i think you meant “elusive”

  • Young A. Simmons

    Docs Advocate, go cop that ish, Nov 14th.

    My man Game bringin the heat, even I didn’t expect him to be so nice on this album.

    Step up or push your release date back Jay, gettin killed son, shoulda stayed retired…

  • AD

    Straight up on the link to the Obie (one of the most underappreciated)article. Good read. I still listen to it start to finish when its in the changer. Go cop Second Rounds on Me.

  • che

    very interesting, but you know what? if he hadn’t had a fucked up year we would have been expecting something beyond perfect from the game after the documentary, but we find this new album incredible because we weren’t expecting it to be..

    although to be honest i don’t really think there’s anything on this new album thus far that has a ‘this is how we do’ feel to it, and that’s a damn shame.

  • che

    basically the motherfucker just set up the stage, made everybody think he’s was suicidal to maximise the intrigue and then made a hot fucking album. Thunder and lightning.

    (why the fuck didn’t i just say that instead of rambling on? fuck it.)

  • e aka the real noreiaga

    Game steped it up on this album and he has lots of talent but nothing on the album stands out to me. He should have had a 300 bars type song. I doubt he will go platinum because he still can’t write hooks(got better at rapping though)

    And unlike 50, who clearly delights in beefing for sport
    ^^^^^^
    I respect him for that because he keeps rap intresting

  • 110 street

    Good blog Ma, stop taking weeks off at a time. We get tired of bols one track mind, we need that balance. One (blood)

  • 110 street

    By the way the hate in this world (internet) is amazing to me evey time i enter it?.

  • weezybaby

    great blog baby the game is hot.

  • DocZeus

    Personally, I was expecting him to come with a hot album. He did manage to ether G-Unit’s career. Thats a big notch in the win column.

  • http://www.allhiphop.com,Version=1,Version=1,Version=1 Rey

    I agree with you, Tara. The Game doesn’t play kiss ass politics with anyone in this game, which is more than I can say for a lot of people in this industry. I’m gonna cop TDA the day it comes out. Uno!

  • LBDII

    The New Game album is hot and this will go Plat just off anticipation my only concern is that none of the singles really hit big and it does not go much further then that. To me this album is one of those albums at first your like its good but I kept listening to it because I thought it was so-so. Then after a few times and two days I think the albums is so hot. So I will buy the album the first day it comes out. Special Edition if they have one.

  • BLAQ

    THAT JOINT WITH NAS AND MARSHA IS FIRRRE!!! IT WILL BE A HIT…

  • http://MYSPACE.COM/LEGACYHIPHOP BELIZE

    Yeah..i played that “Doc Adv” track for one of my homeboyz..he wanted to hate..but coudnt cuz its that good!

    Good post Tara!

  • alleyeCNtower

    I feel the same as you pretty much, Tara. I thought Game would be fucked without Dre’s tutelage and 50′s guidance. He’s obviously kept the Gangsta Rap Rulebook that Dre sculpted him with, going as far as biting Dre’s voice on the first song (and a couple more), and still having more names in his mouth than any other rapper… EVER. But the music is fucking FIRE. These are some of the best beats put together on one album this year, no question.

    Lyrically though? Besides ‘Doctor’s Advocate’ where he apologizes to Dre and says “what the fuck am I without a Dr. Dre track?” (the realest line on the album), ‘One Night’ and his last verse on ‘Why You Hate The Game’ with Nas, every other lyric is some fake fradulent gangsta threats and posturing and shit talking and name dropping, and it doesn’t make for a classic on the level of Nas or Pac or Big.

    Game has the beats and the formula. Just not the brain or soul. He’s got heart, though, I’ll give him that.

    Definitely no brain though. Dude has lost his mind thinking he can get away with all the fake fuckory he does and be accepted by the hip hop nation…

    “you can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all the people all the time” – Bob Marley

  • calimovement

    Someone running this website needs to get Tara’s blogs as the first to pop up when the main page opens….bol gets all the hits cause his blog is the default to come up on the main page.

  • weezybaby

    the game is gonna BLOWWWWWWw

  • UFWA

    UFWA WOULD LIKE TO THANK ALL THE SUPPORTERS OF LIL WAYNE,BABY,GAME,ELTON JOHN,CAM’RON,NEYO,OMAR(THE WIRE) THE CAST OF BROKE BACK MOUNTAIN AND THE SEXIEST THUG ALIVE FOR SUPPORTING OUR MOVEMENT IN OUR FIGHT FOR GAY RIGHTS YOUR HIGHLY APPRECIATED

    UFWA(UNITED FAGGATS OF THE WORLD ASSOCIATION)

  • rich

    great blog tara keep it comin

  • 5 STAR X-E-Q-SHUN

    Game’s album is gonna B fire. He’ll go multi-plat in no time, while G-unot continues 2 throw blanks(mobb deep, tony yoyo,lloyd bricks,).

    If he wanted a hard album, why the fuck does he have Will.I.Am(bep) on “Compton”?

  • SJB

    Yeah, bottom line is this dude is just a rappin’ ass monster…the dude really is kind of slowly but surely making the whole G-Unit look weak…

  • SugarHill

    Game is really the only nigga reppin the west coast to the fullest….and game isn’t on that coastal shit because he stays cool with New York niggas too. Snoop Dogg stopped being relevant 10 years ago….so don’t even mention him.

    Game is lyrical…..he ain’t just a west coast nigga that can’t come up with shit besides money, drugs and hoes.

    Game will be multi-platinum and will be able to prove to the naysayers that he is the future.

  • http://skibeatz.com DJ Main Event

    on a slightly unrelated note: Tara, you heard about what happened with Kanye @ the VMA’s in europe?

  • Hip-Hop Is Not dead

    oh shit!!! I love this. I knew game album was gonna be fire all the hattin’ will stop on nov 14. listen the new track with he has with fat joe its called breath and stop!!!!!! HIP HOP IS NOT DEAD

  • Koran

    Yo thats real right there,I’d happily cut you a check if i was your boss,you do real columns with thought provoking information. Your columns are why i like this site.

  • Vindi

    I got the game CD its fire glad he managed to prove people wrong that he’s not dependant on 50 cent – let’s hope the sales are good to to rub it in to the G-Unit flop CDs lol

    http://www.myspace.com/vindiakaleon
    http://www.myspace.com/dacollectiveakase23sfinest

  • Makaveli

    What can i say… he may not be pac but the man has heart and a strong spirit!!!

    I really hope his album hits the top!

    Keep doing your thing Game!!!

  • SUPERMAN

    THE GAMES A BITCH. AINT INTO 50 MUCH, IM A LLOYD BANKS FAN BUT I REALLY HOPE 50 FUCKIN DESTROYS THIS NAMEDROPPER’S CAREER. GAME IS PATHETIC. NOT TO ADD A WHINING LITTLE BABY. THERE I ADDED IT.

  • Gama

    The Game’s album is gonna be hot fuck yall haters! and as far as beats do yall remenber snoop? He got stonger after he left from under Dre’s wing. Yea they made hot songs but that nigga snoop was broke. I think it was good for him to leave and find himself for the simple fact that he’s the future, and and he wa better than everybody in G unit put together.

  • SUPERMAN

    CALIMOVEMENT NO ONE CARES ABOUT YOUR GAY ASS INPUTS YOU GAY FAGGOT! I HEAR YOU CALLING ME OUT IN OTHER ROOMS. THEN YOU RUN AWAY LIKE A BITCH. YOU BETTA MAN UP YOU FAGGOT!

  • Fernando

    I’m feeling very mixed on this album, just like Documentary. I’ve heard a couple good tracks, & then I heard some super cry-babby “Dr. Dre I love you” Bullsh&t last night where he sounded like he was gonna break into tears at any second.

    Hmmmmmmmmm, should I buy it or download it??????? Hard decision (sarcasm implied)

  • SUPERMAN

    SARCASM ASIDE, BOOTLEG THAT SHIT. ALBUMS NOWADAYS ARENT WORTH YOUR HARD EARNED CASH ANYWAY. ESPECIALLY WHEN 94.32% OF THE ALBUM IS GOING TO HAVE OTHER RAPPERS NAMES ON IT ANYWAY.

  • Spark

    The games TDA Sucks point blank it falls short lyrics are sub-par big time the beats saves this album again. lets just say he’s no tupac/cube i smell an actor, fake

  • Incilin

    I can’t see why you would doubt Game. Follow the mixtapes. His street songs were hot (“Face of LA” comes to mind) and that’s how I knew he was still focused. Granted, yes there has been a lot of problems in his life, but none the less sometimes problems help you make better music (Eminem comes to mind). I’m glad Game is on track and frankly I think he’s the best bar for bar (and most revelant) rapper in the game right now.

  • Spark

    Incilin u on crack: I’m glad Game is on track and frankly I think he’s the best bar for bar (and most revelant) rapper in the game right now. you must not listen to alot of rap shit u 13 years old???

  • http://www.molie-mo.hi5.com molie_mo

    this is o funny SUPERMAN SUPERMAN…dude u dnt lyk 50 now?…i quote 50 is da shyt he made game nd he da best rapper alive….nd now u dnt lyk 50 nd u lyk lloyd banks wat 5-0′s lil dick aint doin u no good nemore…nigga ged outta here..lol u such a loser i mean how many ppl went outta dere way to tell ppl to bootleg lloyd? not even me nd i hate dat nigga wid a passion u jus tooooooo much of a dickryda…u shud kill urself seriously…its all abt da westcoast…THE GAME..SNOOP DOGG..BISHOP LAMONT…G-MALONE…LIL EASY E…YUKMOUTH…SPIDER JOKE….FUCK RASS KASS…
    ONE BLOOD
    ND WE STILL SMOKIN
    NIGGA WAT

  • Hip-Hop Is Not dead
  • BUCKUALL

    CORINNE SAYS:

    Even if you download his music, still get his album! We still have to support out artist.If we don’t, what will we have left?

    YEA LETS SEE IF HE’LL “SUPPORT” U WHEN U NEED TO PAY UR RENT!!!!

  • calimovement

    Superman…you are an idiot….damn did Game knock up your sister or somethin….you write like a dick ridin fag….. on this damn board 24/7 like a homo.

  • Lintus one

    The game is the future. I bought the album and its album of the year

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    i love this site..