Can Ja Rule mount a comeback?
So I heard that new Ja Rule song “Style on ‘Em” in the Bangers section today. I didn’t really like it, but I never really liked hardly anything Ja Rule ever did. Even back in the day when he was on that Jay-Z song from the Rush Hour soundtrack, and his first bigh hit “Holla Holla;” I was never that crazy about the guy. Nullus.
And of course I never liked any of that bullshit he did with J-Lo and Ashanti, which is what he’s really popular for anyway. (Remember when J-Lo dropped an n-bomb on a song with Ja Rule? I’d like to see her try that shit today – though I suppose she might qualify as authentically black under the Beyonce clause.)
For a while there, he was on a roll, but then 50 Cent had to go and fuck it all up. Where as both 2000’s Rule 3:36 and 2001’s Pain Is Love both went 3x Platinum, The Last Temptation, which hit stores about two months before Get Rich or Die Tryin’ only went 1x Platinum. And then 2003’s Blood in My Eye didn’t even go Gold.
Of course what’s ironic is that as much as Fiddy clowned Ja for making songs for the bitches, he went and did the same thing as soon as he blew. First there was “21 Questions” and “Magic Stick” and then there was all of those G-Unit songs with Joe, and “Candy Shop,” which is essentially “Magic Stick” + Fat Joe’s “Lean Back.”
Meanwhile, Ja’s career has been more or less on hold due to the Irv Gotti money laundering trial. That “New York” song with Fat Joe and Jada, in 2004, was his last semi-hit. In 2005, Def Jam put out a Ja Rule’s greatest hits album in time for the holiday season, which usually doesn’t bode very well for an artists prospects career-wise.
According to the world’s most accurate encyclopedia, an album called The Mirror is scheduled for this summer. It’ll be interesting to see how that turns out. You’ll recall that Ja and Vanessa Carlton are now label mates. Maybe the two of them can collaborate on something.
If this new song is any indication, his new tack seems to be “borrowing” silly catchphrases from boring mixtape rappers – in this case Nyckz, the guy who got punched out in that infamous “Oh, you mad cuz I’m stylin’ on you” YouTube clip. But this could just be the track for the streets and the mixtapes.
Either way, Nyckz himself is decidedly nonplussed, and rightfully so. After all, that damn stylin’ on you bullshit might be the only worthwhile thing he comes up with in his career, and now here comes Ja Rule stealing it right out from under him as part of his comeback attempt.