Mr. Cheeks: Super Star

Before Mr. Cheeks was a household name in hip-hop, the dreded rapper gained critical acclaim as a member of the Lost Boys. When Lost Boyz member Freaky Tah was gunned down, the group soon disbanded. In 2001 Cheeks broke the silence with his solo debut, John P. Kelly, which spawned the hit single "Lights, Camera, […]

Before Mr. Cheeks was a household name in hip-hop,

the dreded rapper gained critical acclaim as a member of the Lost Boys. When Lost

Boyz member Freaky Tah was gunned down, the group soon disbanded. In 2001 Cheeks

broke the silence with his solo debut, John P. Kelly, which spawned the hit single

"Lights, Camera, Action."

Now that his silence has been broken, it appears

Cheeks has no intention of remaining silent. For his second solo album, I’m

Back, Cheeks has tapped Pete Rock & CL Smooth, M.O.P., Floetry and even

80’s legend Alexander O’Neal. Cheek’s is back. So you say your growing up a little

bit now?

Mister Cheeks: Yeah, I been growing up through

the game. I been doing a lot of things, rockin’ and I got the Back Again

jumping off.

AllHipHop: Do you think it’s hard for artist

to grow up?

MC: Yeah because it’s a lot of things that

happen in the industry with record labels and everything. That’s before

we did it, why you don’t see some n*ggas that aint in the game now? Where’s

Nice & Smooth at right now? It’s

really hard to maintain a career in music.

AllHipHop: The Rolling Stones have had a 30-year

career but a Run DMC can’t full a coliseum, it seems like Hip Hop is definitely

a young man’s arena.

MC: Just like the NBA you got the nice young

talent coming in and you got the old school n*ggas doing it, but they not producing

for the team like there are supposed to so you got to go with the new.

AllHipHop: Have you balanced that?

MC: I go hard; I make sure I’m on top of

my game. When I lost my man Freaky Tah I always said we are going to have to

step it up forever now.

AllHipHop: I noticed some interesting collaborations

on the album, can you speak on Alexander O’ Neil on Brighter?

MC: I grew up listening to him. My man brought this track to me it was Alexander

O’ Neil “Sunshine”. I was like hold up how a n*gga flip this

track? So I had to immediately come with something to rock with that track

and it had to make since. So that’s the story behind I’m always on

the road and I’m trying to get home to see my lady, I can’t go a day

without my sunshine. I called Charles and said you got to get Alexander O’

Neil to come

through, I couldn’t do it without him.

AllHipHop: How did y’all find that guy,

he’s definitely a legend but he hasn’t been in the limelight too much


MC: I know we had to work.

AllHipHop: I didn’t feel that that the M.O.P

collaboration was a natural collaboration, but when I listened to it they was

dope and it was on a smooth track too. How did you guys hook up?

MC: We friends from a long time ago. Me and Billy

Danze always be kicking it, he comes to queens to see his grand pops and I was

at my grandmother house and we just bumped heads. When I got the track from

my man Mr. Sex I had to bring these cats on it. I got my little brother on the

chorus with his man so it all worked out beautiful. A lot of people probably

like Cheeks don’t go hard on no street sh*t and won’t think I would

do something like that or they think that M.O.P. is just mad riot, they flow.

Me and the god’s got the comfortable slowdown smooth street sh*t too.

AllHipHop: What made you remake T.R.O.Y.?

MC: The cat that rhymes on it, my man journalist

gave me that idea. He got a hold of Pete Rock and C.L smooth and sh*t just fell

into place. Mr. Sex did that track too. Anything that Mr. Sex do he call me

up and make history.

AllHipHop: What’s Poppin’ with the

Lost Boyz, I would’ve thought that y’all would’ve had an album

by now or something that we could get a little reunion?

MC: At the time Tah passed away, n*ggas went

their separate ways and did things. But, as far as LB we still here, we got

this album we trying to work on dropping in June on my label and we looking

for someone to distribute it, but that’s how it’s been since Tah passed.

I do this solo sh*t to make sure I keep the LB name known.

AllHipHop: Being a successful solo artist what

have you experienced, it seems almost that your solo success has gone beyond

the group even though one can’t be without the other but it seems like

you have really blown up on the solo tip even more than when you were with the


MC: I’m just moving around more; I don’t

have to wait around no more. It’s like I’m not solo ‘cause I

be with my boys still with the crew. We just had to get our sh*t back in order.

AllHipHop: I know you had a collaboration with

the kid from the Marley’s are you still working on that?

MC: Steve Marley that’s my man, that’s


AllHipHop: How is that going on with that?

MC: We got the studio setup in Miami right now,

right now we are dropping Julian Marley’s album so we just chillin’

right now.

AllHipHop: is that through y’all label together?

MC: It’s through Ghetto youth.

AllHipHop: Is that the label y’all have


MC: One Fam is what we got together. Ghetto Youth

is my label and Ghetto youth and then you got One Fam music. It’s all coming

through the One Fam music.

AllHipHop: Did you still live in Miami?

MC: Yeah, I love it down there.

AllHipHop: Is it different?

MC: It’s another world, it’s like gangsta

paradise out there. I go down there hit the beaches up at night and the clubs

don’t close until like 5 or 6, the ocean right there, the shorties, everyday

you got the Summer.

AllHipHop: You don’t ever think it’s

too hot ‘cause I just came from there and it was ridiculous?

MC: yeah, but I mean you got A.C. Wherever I’m

going to be I have to make myself comfortable. I been down there for 3 years

already so I’m kind of comfortable. It’s good down there; you got

good trees down there.

AllHipHop: So you still smoking trees and all


MC: No doubt about it.

AllHipHop: I know you got the album, what are

other things that you might be working on?

MC: Me and Joe got this joint, from the tribute

to Stevie Wonder. I got this movie coming out with me and Trina called Miami


AllHipHop: What’s that about?

MC: Trina is this chick that is fed up with everything

that is going around in her community, the streets are f*cked up, n*ggas got

beef and all of that. It’s a Spanish gang and a Black gang and she trying

to get the girls from that gang to go and tell the shorties over there not to

give the n*ggas no ass and put the guns down.

AllHipHop: Do you want to continue acting?

MC: acting is cool, yeah why not.

AllHipHop: What kind of roles do you want to


MC: I want to have an action role, jumping over

sh*t, bussin’ off guns. I could be a cop, I could be a robber, I could

be anything. Any role is good but I’m not being a Fruit Loop, I’ll

never do an Oz role, no n*gga is going

to be slapping me on the ass.

AllHipHop: So it’s a side gig for you not


MC: Hell no, believe me if I can get a Box Office

hit and be straight then I’m good.

AllHipHop: Can you talk about the vibe on this

album ‘cause it seems to me that musically its more, not serious but the

beats sound more musical?

MC: I might have jacked the Sunshine track but

that sh*t is crispy. I might have jacked a carwash track but that sh*t is crispy.

I can’t be like these other cats and run with all the same producers ‘cause

a n*gga got a hot name.

I don’t want a n*gga all on my track I find n*ggas on the grind.

AllHipHop: How was it working with Lil’

Kim ‘cause that was an unlikely collaboration too but it seem to work really


MC: That was real fun and it was comfortable we knew each other since the Jack

the Rapper days. So when she called me up that showed me love, you want to do

my sh*t that’s love.

AllHipHop: What’s your opinion on Hip Hop

these days?

MC: I don’t know I’m just doing the

damn thing, I’m trying to sell these records and all that it’s so

much other sh*t you have to go through in the world, we making music you supposed

to enjoy what your doing.

AllHipHop: What about the war, can you give me

opinions on the war and what you think of that we might be going to war but

people are worried about Michael Jackson, Hip Hop, 50 Cent and little beefs?

MC: That’s the real deal, they sending n*ggas

over there to take care of that sh*t, it aint no rap war. n*ggas trying to fight

terrorism like you can fight terrorism, terrorism is a word to describe a group

of motherf*ckers, it’s no one n*gga you can kill. There are suicide bombers

and they want to have a war on terrorism.

AllHipHop: Do you think we should invade Iraq

and do you support Bush?

MC: Nah

AllHipHop: How come?

MC: You got kids and sh*t over there too, families

and establishments over there too. How you feel if n*ggas came bombing up your

sh*t over here. Like that Twin Towers sh*t, that sh*t hurt and that’s how

n*ggas been doing that to them for years. They don’t know the full story

on that sh*t we get that sh*t from the news. The news be telling you everything,

they’ll tell you where the president at tonight, “The president is

over in Camp David chillin” f*ck are you telling all this stuff for.