Shyne Interviews XXL’s EIC, Pt. 1

Originally published in the Sept 2010 issue of XXL, which is on stands now.

I’ve been waiting for this cover for almost as long as Shyne has. That might be going overboard, but the return of Shyne Po is a story XXL needed to tell. The mag has a history with Shyne. I do, too. But that’s not why I wanted Shyne on the cover. It’s because of his story. Y’all know it by now, and if not, you can CLICK HERE to read the cover story. In a time when, to me, rap lacks a certain amount of substance and passion, an artist as focused as Po could really do some damage. And he’s got the music. I heard it in Belize.

I’ve followed Po’s career pretty much since it started in 1998, as a fan and documenting it with XXL. I’ve visited him at Rikers Island and Clinton and Woodbourne Correctional Facilities so I was a bit emotional when I touched down in Belize and realized I was gonna see Shyne free.

In honor of the XXL’s 13th anniversary, Po rocked his reporter’s fitted and interviewed me. Check out the convo below, and let us know what you thought. —Vanessa Satten, Editor-in-Chief

SHYNE: How does it feel to celebrate XXL’s 13th anniversary?

VANESSA: It feels great to celebrate XXL’s 13th, because it’s been a long time. It’s been a rough couple of years. You would hear every day that this mag folded or that one, so just to be able to make it with all the concessions we had to make, is an important thing for all of us.

SHYNE: I feel that same way. Ten years ago, some dudes that was sellin’, like, 10 million records is nowhere to be found today. So I definitely thank God that that wasn’t my peril, despite the fuckin’ impossible situation I find myself in. Now, as far as your [personal] 12-year anniversary [at XXL], what does that mean to you individually?

VANESSA: I never really think about it, because I get big into jinxing things. I sometimes think if I slow down for a moment to celebrate, then I’m going to jinx any success or happy moment.

SHYNE: What’s the difference, in your opinion, of hip-hop 12 years ago and today?

VANESSA: I have this conversation about what’s going on in hip-hop every day with all sorts of people. So obviously all sorts of people are feeling as if there’s something up with hip-hop right now. I just really can’t put my finger on it. There are great parts of hip-hop. But it’s definitely going through a transition right now, and I’m not really sure where it’s gonna come out on the end.

SHYNE: Keep it 100. Twelve years ago, how did you feel about hip-hop in general?

VANESSA: Then, I was a jaded teen who thought most rappers were way cooler than they actually are…

SHYNE: Hold on! Maybe these rappers were really [cool], and maybe now they’re not?

VANESSA: That could be the case. But I think, when hip-hop got more popular, and it got wealthier, it got consumed with money, and it changed. Also, I like competition, and I don’t think there’s as much as there was then. Not everybody desires competition on the same level.

SHYNE: Twelve years ago it was deliberate. You had so many fuckin’ giants. That was one of the defining eras of hip-hop. If you comin’ out, it’s gonna be competitive, because everybody was so fuckin’ great. Today, you don’t get the same thing?

VANESSA: I think it’s harder for people to judge what a star really is these days…

SHYNE: You dancin’ right now, Nessa!

VANESSA: People aren’t fans like they used to be.

SHYNE: There ain’t nothin’ to be a fan of. I wanna be excited. I want a muthafucka to come out and make me want to go back in the studio and be like, Yo, I gotta step my shit up!

VANESSA: The Web is giving folks the mentality of here today, gone tomorrow. Nothing is sticking.

SHYNE: I think it’s always been like that.

VANESSA: I don’t think so. We anticipated things before…

SHYNE: That’s because you had somethin’ to anticipate. When you heard, “M-E-T-H-O-D, Man!” When the Wu came, that was somethin’ to anticipate. It ain’t have nothin’ to do with…

VANESSA: But that was a whole level of fresh that doesn’t exist anymore.

SHYNE: Don’t blame it on the people!

Stay tuned tomorrow for Pt. 2 of Shyne’s interview of XXL’s EIC.

  • J

    All this promo work will still only lead to a 5k opening week. SMH Damn Def Jam….Damn

  • Saratoga N. Blake

    What ** BOOKS ** did Shyne read in prison?

    Shyne keeping it real… read DUMB.

    Co-sign the 5K but that’s only if Def Jam’s buying, way less otherwise, dude was mediocre at his best, now he aspires to abysmal.

    • Ahmed B.

      Shyne mediocre at best? hommie get da fuck! shyne’s the second coming of biggie…hard,gritty rhymes! always!…smh get outta here hommie…u prolly think lil waynes the best that eva did it!

  • poop

    8=============D~~~~~~

  • The Decatur Dictator

    @ J-No one cares about number anymore dude, let that die…let the music live. ‘counting another man’s money is weak.

    • j

      Nope you missed the point – It is sad to see a machine behind this garbage. 5k only states his success/failure of creating something popular, but how can I argue with a Shyne fan. Your taste is weak

      • PUSSEE BEETAH

        ew u tasted him? nigga u gay

  • Flipped

    Who cares about numbers…

  • Da Boy 2 Watch

    @ -Saratoga N. Blake: If you don’t like his music then shut the hell up and listen to Drake-you ole’ sugar cookie eatin’ aZs boi!

    • Drake is a homo

      LOL @ faggot niggas always mad at Drake cuz hoes like him. THat nigga is a pussy but i bet he could fuck yo mama oh wait he did.

      Fuck u and fuck that bitch nigga drake 2

      • Da Boy 2 Watch

        You fool, I was eluding to the fact that Drake is a Ole’ Sugar Cookie Asz Negro, and then there you go talking out the side of yo neck like a dumb bastard. Learn to read…I should just delete this message and not give credence to the crap you speaking but too late….~

        • gunz

          to late fuck nigga u been exposed

        • Da Boy 2 Watch

          Die Fool.

        • gunz

          awww whats a matter fuck nigga u sad that u exposed yoself? hahahahaha

        • Drake is a homo

          Bitch nigga lolllllll

        • Da Boy 2 Watch

          @Gunz-

          Ain’t you a janitor or something go screw some screws in-
          take out the trash my nicca-go catch a cool wind-
          call himself gunz-should be nicca with low funds-Kroger got plenty of jobs-go get you one.
          Do something-dumb nicca beefin’ on that Double X L-
          See this dude in person he got a gun with no shells-
          Talkin about-”I was just playing”- that’s when I blaze gunz to hell-
          R.I.P-August 26th-we all wish you well.

        • with ya hoe right now

          u a whiny lil bitch nigga lol

        • Da Boy 2 Watch

          @Drake is a homo

          “Drake is a Homo”?-what a tag for a homo-
          Why you want to beef wicha boy?-knowin you on the low-low-
          Seen you on the strip-sellin yo’ asz for the low-low-
          Red skirt-white pumps-swearing they manolo-
          Nicca you wack-I’m a fighter-you done stepped into the dojo-
          next time you on double XL-just know messin with me is a no-no-
          you better off sticking ya self-then asking “gunz” to suck ya fo-fo-
          that’s slang for yall niccas is gay-and I got the photo-

        • Anonymous

          nigga u cant rhyme

        • Da Boy 2 Watch

          Yeah right, I just knew YOU would say that…Anonymous…

        • Da Boy 2 Watch

          Yeah right, I just knew YOU would say that…Anonymous…..

        • Da Boy 2 Watch

          How did I know you would say that…

          from an ole’ “”Anonymous nicca”"

        • Da Boy 2 Watch

          @with ya hoe right now-

          What’s your real name dude?, I will record a diss track and blaze you up in 30 minutes. Then, I’ll have yo hoe wit me.

          Don’t mess with Detroit Niccas-you really don’t want it.

        • PUSSEE BEETAH

          this nigga str8 homo

  • drizzy

    ;_;

  • UGK

    I GOT BOBBY BY DA POUND
    WHITNEY BY DA KEY
    SHYNE IS A PUSSY
    BITCH DA GAME BELONG TO ME

  • Saratoga N. Blake

    What books did Shyne read in prison?

    Come on, there’s gotta be SOME, why not say what helped keep his head up if he’s so “real” in any way, again, besides being Real. Fucking. Dumb.

    • (xxl staff):shyne

      “i read da book by da nigga shakespere about shootin up da club wit da nigga puff”

  • G-UNOT KILLA

    THIS NICCA SHYNE LOOK LIKE THIS DUDE I TRIED 2 GET IT ON WIT AT DA ROXXY UP N DA BAFFROOM BUT DATS A STORY 4 ANOTHA DAY U BICHEZ

  • sparkcity911

    SHYNE GOT SOME NICE SHIT OUT RIGHT NOW..
    I DONT KNOW WHAT ALL YOU LITTLE SCHOOL GIRLS
    RUNNING YOUR GEMS FOR….ON SOME REAL O.G. TIP
    THESE NEW NIGGAS IS SOFT YO….I AINT ON NO MOBB SHIT BUT I CANT RELATE TO WHAT THESE NEW
    SET OF WAC NIGGAS IS SAYING TALKING ABOUT BUYIN
    THE BAR OUT,OR YOU AINT GOT ENOUGH MONEY,BUYIN
    A BITCH WHAT EVER SHE LIKES..BUT I CAN RELATE
    TO THAT OTHER SIDE CALLED THE STRUGGLE AN BUSTIN MY GUN EVEN THO I DONT GET DOWN LIKE THAT BUT I HAVE AN IM MORE LIKELY TO BUST MY
    GUN THEN STACK MILLIONS ROCKING A 1 MILLION
    DOLLER WATCH YO…JUST LIKE MOST OF YOU GERMS
    ON HEAR……U UNDERSTAND….

  • Da Boy 2 Watch

    Crickets……..

  • El Tico Loco

    SHYNE: There ain’t nothin’ to be a fan of. I wanna be excited. I want a muthafucka to come out and make me want to go back in the studio and be like, Yo, I gotta step my shit up!
    ^^^^

    Why wait?

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  • Real Talkest

    I know 50 cent somewhere on this site talkin shit. Shyne you want to beat him? GO BACK TO THE FLOW. Drop a hit record… You got LA Reid and Def Jam. You can’t lose! You’ll lose to 50 cent if you don’t make good music! You see the comments….

  • Godfatherfan

    read the 48 laws of power shyne!!! It will help you play chess with these niggas!!!

  • http://youtube.com/reelmuzik ReelMuzikRep

    come to youtube.com/reelmuzik …beats on FIRE! -GoodMike

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  • roberts,shakeem elijah

    son is on a bic