After a 2 year hiatus, veteran LL Cool J is gearing up for the release of Exit 13, his 13th and final LP under his Def Jam recording deal.
Unlike his other albums, the Farmers Boulevard legend has worked closely with another Queens native, rapper 50 Cent.
I did a whole album with 50, I did an album by myself, then I went and did another album by myself, LL disclosed to AllHipHop.com. I decided to use like two or three songs from the album I did with 50, one from the second album I did by myself, and the rest is all new material.
Some have expressed concern that LL may pattern himself after 50s more successful albums, such a Get Rich or Die Tryin, a claim the MC quickly denied.
Watching him work made me hungry again, but it was also important for me to come out with an LL Cool J album that doesnt sound like Im trying to be 50 Cent, LL clarified. Im not doing that.
LL also dismissed rumors that he was attempting to sign to G-Unit over his dissatisfaction with Def Jams promotion of his last album.
There were a lot of, for lack of a better word, doe-does out there that were like LL is going to sign to G-Unit, the veteran laughed. I dont know what these guys were thinking. Why would I work for 20 years to sign to another artist? I dont know where the stupidness came from. I dont think they understand who theyre dealing with and the reason why Im here.
LL openly criticized former Def Jam president Jay-Z about his work in promoting rap albums on the label.
Now with a new regime, he feels rap projects including his own, will get the attention they deserve.
Before Lyor and them left we did a deal and I got my full catalog. LL Cool J owns his whole body of work. Im very happy about the growth Def Jam has experienced, he revealed. Now, do I feel the Hip-Hop side of the music needs more attention? Yes. I think Hip-Hop will be served more now that Shakir Stewart [new Def Jam Executive Vice President] is up there doing what he does. People are excited about Hip-Hop. People are excited about my project and I know its going to succeed.
Exit 13 is set for release on August 26.
The album features production from DJ Scratch, Tricky Stewart, and Raw Uncut.
Guests include KRS-One, Jim Jones, 50 Cent, Lil Kim, Trey Songz, The Dream, and Richie Sambora of Bon Jovi.