I rolled off of the couch this morning at the ass crack of 11 a.m. and cranked up the Internets to see that the soundtrack to the new Biggie Smalls movie, Notorious, had been liberated to the Internets. I figured I’d go ahead and download it for the purposes of doing a post on it here or on my own site, only come to find out that the TIs had already had it removed from Rapidshare.
The fuck? Usually, that only happens with an album they actually expect to make money on, like the new T.I. album. It could be that they just can’t afford any more piracy, with the state the economy is in these days. Or it could be that they really do expect to make a lot of money on this soundtrack.
As I’ve mentioned before on this site, I’m sure these posthumous Biggie albums are very profitable, in that it’s not like they have to pay Biggie’s corpse a per diem or anything. They probably start making money on the first copy sold, even if they don’t sell very many copies overall. Otherwise, why bother padding this soundtrack out with a bunch of shit we’ve all heard a million times before? They could have just as easily posted the few genuinely new records to the Internets.
Of course, plenty of people already have posted the few genuinely new records to the Internets – which is where I heard them. You’re gonna want to check them out, if you haven’t already. These new demos, as far as I know, aren’t the same ones that have been floating around the Internets for years now. I’d never heard them before anyway, and I’ve heard all types of shit. The sound quality isn’t the best in the world, but what are you gonna do? Whine like a little bitch?
Speaking of which, I see that the film itself has evolved into more and more of a PR clusterfuck since I did that post here a few weeks ago about what might be on the soundtrack. Yesterday, the guy who does the Scratch blog posted an interview with Easy Mo Bee in which he complains about his lack of involvement with the film. And the other day, Illseed posted – to his blog – an interview Lil’ Kim did with Hip-Hop Weekly, which apparently might actually be publishing timely, interesting journalism (who knew?), again complaining about her lack of involvement with the film. Do the two of them have legitimate grounds to complain, or are they a couple of salty haters?
I’d say they both suffer from delusions of grandeur. It’s true that they both probably played a bigger role in the Biggie story than this film would have you think – to hear them tell it. (I haven’t actually seen the film myself, but I’m not gonna lie. I’m a little bit psyched.) Easy Mo Bee produced a good half of the songs on Ready to Die, if not the songs most people remember from that album. And Lil’ Kim shined Biggie’s knob on numerous occasions, in exchange for him writing for her the only female rap album I’ve spent a significant amount of time listening to. If the people who made Notorious were really concerned with creating the most accurate movie in the world, those two probably should have been consulted. Whether or not that should have been the filmmakers’ goal in the first place is a topic for another discussion.
But you get the idea that Easy Mo Bee and Lil’ Kim’s main concerns aren’t necessarily with the quality of the film. Lil’ Kim claims she isn’t gonna bother seeing Notorious anyway. Her main concern seems to be that she’s depicted in the film as not only a filthy whore who broke up Biggie’s family, but worse: a dark-skinted filthy whore who broke up Biggie’s family. Aww dang! A lot of the interview with her centers on the casting of the admittedly kinda gross Naturi Naughton to play her in the film. (Have you seen the cover of King she was on? Ick!) You know Biggie was color struck – If Lil’ Kim would have had Faith’s complexion, there wouldn’t have been a Faith in the first place. Lil’ Kim could have had Biggie’s son, and hence a piece of his publishing, and Faith could be off somewhere in a touring production of Lord, I Need a Man.
At least Lil Kim is gonna make a little money from this film. In the interview, she explains how they had to pay her a fee to use her name and her likeness. Meanwhile, I’m not nearly as certain about Easy Mo Bee’s financial situation. In the interview he did with the Scratch blog, he claims that he signed a contract to do a score for Notorious and received payment. But I’m wondering what kind of payment he could he have received, if he didn’t do any work on the film. If he did get paid in full, why should he give a shit that they ultimately went with Danny Elfman (of all people)? Could it be that he’s embarrassed about his financial situation? In the interview, it doesn’t sound like he’s had a lot going on since the (godawful) work he did on Life After Death. If he was really that concerned with his legacy, he would have been more productive in the last 1o years.
 To his credit, I’ve read that he tried to submit some grimy, Ready to Die shit for Life After Death, and was told by Diddy that they were going in a different direction with that album. Then he submitted “I Love the Dough” and “Going Back to Cali.” Then Diddy had his team of hacks add vocoders and obnoxious female R&B vocals and what have you.