“The only kind of wine I like is from 1955 or 1963, about $6,000 a bottle. It tastes real smooth. You think about the price, but it’s worth it.” – Suge Knight
On the one hand, it’s hard to feel too sorry about a guy like Suge Knight, what with all of the stories of him beating people up with baseball bats, dangling guys from balconies by their ankles (albeit guys like Vanilla Ice, but still), making people drink cups filled with piss, and dunking people’s heads into fish tanks filled with violent, bloodthirsty piranhas, let alone the fact that he may or may not have been involved with the killings of 2Pac and the Notorious B.I.G.
But on the other hand, you can’t help but think that it’s too bad that a man of his means hasn’t been able to accomplish more in the music business in the past 10 years or so. Granted anyone who was at all worth a shit waved bye bye to Death Row Records a long time ago, but he did manage to stick both Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg for their fairly considerable publishing on the way out. And it’s not like he’s got a particularly solid track record as far as paying anyone else he’s ever worked with. So who knows how much money we may have been talking about at one point in time or another.
These days, Suge Knight is supposedly broke as a joke, though a profile on him that ran in the Washington Post this past weekend featured scenes of him living the high life at some swanky, poolside cabana in Beverly Hills, peeling off a $100 tip for his presumably smoking hot Brazillian “massage therapist.” Exactly what caliber of service would necessitate a $100 tip for a massage therapist? I don’t even wanna know. Suffice it to say that the guy isn’t exactly living the hard knock life, like yours truly. Pressed to reveal how he could afford such a lifestyle, he wouldn’t say one way or the other.
But according to documents filed in bankruptcy court last year, Suge Knight is pretty far beyond what a regular d-bag such as myself would consider “broke.” With only $11 in his checking account, Suge claims to be $137 million in debt, with $12 million in IRS liens and $51,000 in monthly expenses. How in the world you can have $51,000 in monthly expenses with $11 in your checking account is beyond me, though I know he recently had to put his home on the market and move into a place that still costs several thousand dollars a month. So obviously there’s some shady business going on with regard to Suge’s finances.
The thing is, the reason why Suge has gotta pretend to not have any money in the first place is because… you guessed it, some woman is trying to take him for everything that he’s got. (She’s already kicked him out of his home!) Lydia Harris, the estranged wife of legendary drug dealer Michael “Harry O” Harris, claims that she put up $300,000 to help start Death Row back in the day, so now she’s entitled to, like, $100 gozillion or some ridonkulous bullshit. Of course the judge in this case has sided in her favor. Now all that’s left is to actually collect the money. Hence the ridonkulous bankruptcy filings.
Who knows whether or not this woman will ever receive any money from Suge Knight. Some of the schemes he’s come up with to shift his money around and live well while still appearing to be broke sound like some shit right out of an Elmore Leonard novel, but who knows? The LAPD still hasn’t busted anyone in the Biggie Smalls killing 10 years after the fact, despite the fact that motherfucking Nick Broomfield more or less managed to crack the case in tha Biggie & 2Pac movie. At the very least, I’m assuming it’s only a matter of time before she’s the new owner of Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg’s publishing, which is disheartening.
It’s bad enough Suge was able to rob Dre and Snoop for their shit the way that he did back in the mid ’90s, but at least Suge can claim that he once went around and roughed up guys like Eazy-E and Jerry Heller and Vanilla Ice, which is what made Death Row possible in the first place. All this woman Lydia Harris did was blow some drug dealer. And since when can you go to court with somebody over drug money anyway? Talk about brazen! Indeed, if there’s one thing this whole incident has proven to me, it’s that the only thing gullier than Suge Knight himself is an unscrupulous jizzjar with the American legal system on her side.