A few weeks ago, when “400 Bars” hit the Internets, I listened to about six minutes of it then I just said, fuck it. I was bored and distracted. I saw the track was only about a third of the way through, and I went back to whatever I had been doing, i.e. probably scouring the Internets for pictures of women in various states of undress.
Then I felt bad about it – not because I wanted to hear how it ended, or because there was any question as to what I’d rather be doing, but because I figured that if I ever wanted to write about, I’d have to go back and listen to at least that last two-thirds, if not the song in its entirety. What a waste. I should have just taken one for the team and let it ride out that first time. It’s not like I’m at a loss for free time during the day.
It probably doesn’t bode well for The R.E.D. Album, if I can’t bring myself to listen to a Game song in its entirety, let alone the entire Red Room mixtape, now does it? I mean, if the idea of the mixtape is to get people excited about listening to the album. It seems like they may have been better off waiting until they had a song people like, then putting out a mixtape.
Maybe that was the idea, they just ran out of time. I know there’s that song with Pharrell, which has been out for some time now. It struck me as kinda meh – which was hardly surprising, given the fact that it’s been half a decade plus since Pharrell has had a genuinely good idea. If my last album was generally viewed as a failure compared to my first couple of albums (regardless of if LAX actually sold any worse than Doctor’s Advocate), Pharrell is not the person I’d be calling to get my career.
Maybe Pharrell offered Game a deep discount. Nhjic. The fact that he’s listed, along with Dr. Dre, as one of the album’s executive producers suggests to me that he may have given Game a few beats for very little, if any money up front, in exchange for points on the back end, as they say in Hollywood. This way, Game doesn’t have to convince the TIs to pony a significant album budget, when it’s obvious his career trajectory has been a downward slope ever since the Documentary, and Pharrell doesn’t have to worry about trying to justify the type of fee he used to charge back before he lost the plot.
If the album does well, he’ll make a shedload of money. When it doesn’t, what difference does it make? Everyone involved already had a shedload of money to begin with. I saw on Vlad TV where someone hacked into the Game’s email and they turned up documents showing the exorbitant amount he has to spend just to maintain his lifestyle. I can’t remember exactly what it was, but I remember it seemed ridonkulous, given how long it’d been since he had an album out. He might be one of those rappers like Nas who had a lot of money people don’t know about.
If I get especially bored later on this week, maybe I’ll DL a copy of the Red Roof Inn or whatever it’s called and have a look. The price is right – even though for me (a respected music critic) it’s the same price I’ll be paying for the actual album. Maybe there really are good songs buried deep within it, and they just didn’t want to push them to the forefront, so as to reward the most dedicated Game fans – similar to how Def Jam put so much time and effort into the artwork for the otherwise hastily thrown together odds and ends collection that was the Wu Massacre. I think I’m finally starting to understand how a TI thinks.
But I’m gonna have to maintain that the best idea at this point would be to release one of the songs the Game did with Dr. Dre. We caught those pictures on Twitter of the two of them in the studio; we need to hear what actually came of that. I’m sure it would generate a lot more interest than a mixtape full of collabos with the likes of Nipsey Hustle (whom I won’t be listening to, if at all possible) and Jadakiss. Which makes me wonder why this hasn’t already happened. You know the Game, who probably carries around a picture of Dr. Dre in his wallet the way Mexicans carry pictures of Jesus (I’ve seen that shit at the BGM) can’t be against the idea. Could it be Dre himself? If he really is planning on releasing a single from Detox anytime soon, I could see how he wouldn’t want to compete. He seems hesitant enough as it is.