RIP Sean P

August 12th, 2015 by Boogie

Nine years ago, just a couple of years after I started writing for AllHipHop.com, I conducted one of the best interviews of my career. On a Saturday afternoon, I sat on the phone for almost two hours with Sean Price, who was SO brutally honest about his career between Heltah Skeltah’s debut album Nocturnal and his own solo debut Monkey Barz that I had to ask more than once if he was sure I could include parts of our conversation in my story.

Years later, I would become a bigger fan of Sean P’s thanks to social media… and come to realize that we had a ton of close friends in common. We lost a giant on August 8, 2015. But I’ll never forget this conversation…

AllHipHop.com: While in the studio, did you plan for, Monkey Barz as a big comeback or was it just another album?

Sean Price: It took a lot of consideration. A lot of the material that was heard on the album was reminiscent of Magnum Force. People didn’t like Nocturnal as much. I tried to take it back to that, but update it.

AllHipHop.com: Yeah, it’s been almost ten years. What did you do after Priority dropped Duck Down?

Sean Price: Me and Rock, we hood dudes. We do what we gotta do to get money. So we went back to the streets, what we usually do. Caught a few gun charges, caught a few drug cases, whatever whatever – the two of us did time. You know? Never stopped writing them rhymes, though. We just did what we had to do. I’m not bragging about it; it’s kinda f**ked up. But, you know, we had to do what we had to do.

AllHipHop.com: During that time, did you ever see yourself doing another album?

Sean Price: Nah, I was pretty much pissed off, fed up with the whole s**t, man. Pretty much, I was like, “F**k this rap s**t.”

AllHipHop.com: Why?

Sean Price: It got to the point where, I never been a big time drug dealer. Never. But I made more money selling crack than I do on this rap s**t. Even now, I’m not even gonna lie. So, I’d rather sell crack.

AllHipHop.com: So what made you come back to it?

Sean Price: I got tired of getting arrested, man. You know it’s real hard when you rent a car, then you got two girls in the car ahead of you with drugs on ‘em. And you in the other car, making sure they get where they going. Too much s**t, man. I’m tired of that s**t. That shit was cool when I was a teenager, I got kids now. When I did it before, it wasn’t no worries. But now my kids and s**t. My wife, she calling me every f**kin’ minute, “What’s going on?” What, I’mma tell her, I’m selling crack on the phone? Come on man! She know what I’m doing, but she get so worried about me, she worry me. I’m like, “F**k, I can’t do this s**t.”

AllHipHop.com: It’s amazing how you maintain the street life and rap life…

Sean Price: N***as is hustling, man. Man, I wish I could be more candid. I wish y’all could just come around my block and see what I go through on a regular to make money. I’m not bragging like I’m some super hustler or some Avon Barksdale n***a, or something like that. But if you come around my way in Brownsville, you see how we get money, you gonna be like “Wow! And the n***a make records too.” That record s**t don’t mean nothing where I’m at. Nobody gives a f**k.

AllHipHop.com: So why do both then?

Sean Price: ‘Cause of my son. Gotta feed the babies.

AllHipHop.com: At the same time, don’t you worry that you’re giving him the wrong message?

Sean Price: I worry about it, but I can’t worry about it. ‘Cause at the end of the day, he gonna worry about where that food at. So that makes it easier for me to go do what I gotta do. But honestly, I don’t have the hustler’s heart no more. I lost that s**t, that ain’t really in me no more. I got caught last year in Virginia with a couple pounds of weed like a f**king jerk. Word. It really ain’t in me no more.

AllHipHop.com: You sound like you really kicking yourself because of that.

Sean Price: Yeah. That’s why I talk about it so much. It’s a lot of rappers who say they hustle still – I actually do it for real, for real. And it’s not cool. ‘Cause if you a hustler, then you probably be like, “If you still hustle, why is you talking about it on magazines?” Because I don’t wanna hustle. I want this s**t to stop. I wish I can be fully rewarded for my art so I don’t have to go out there and do that other s**t. But until then, this is what it is. Straight up, I bulls**t you not. Somebody send me a lifeline or something.

AllHipHop.com: People don’t even think it’s still like that in New York. How is it that that reality continues to exist and it doesn’t get out there.

Sean Price: I have no idea. All I know is, I just pray, man. I pray that one day this s**t will do what it do, so I can leave that s**t alone. It’s not cool. I got a real organized machine, my team is official. But even my team know, I was never no drug dealer, yo. I was an aggressive, take money, choke-you-out type n***a. So this smooth, laid-back drug dealing bulls**t I’m doing right now? This s**t is corny, yo. Whateva. Then n***as watch The Wire all day, they think everybody Avon. It’s crazy out there. I just wish I could find something else to do.

AllHipHop.com: Do you ever see yourself leaving New York?

Sean Price: I’m moving to Arizona. It’s good for my asthma. Scottsdale, I’mma build my house out there. Take me, my son, my wife, and just get outta here. I’m tired of all this New York, Hip-Hop, crazy bulls**t.

AllHipHop.com: So when you make that move, that’s it? You’re retiring from Hip-Hop?

Sean Price: I’mma always make music, I’m never gonna retire, man. I’m not gonna get on a interview and be like, “Yeah, I’mma quit after this album.” What if you feel like making another album? Like Jay, I think Jay kinda regret saying he’s done. I love Jay-Z, his music, everything. I love his whole movement. I know he meant it when he said it. But that don’t stop your mind from creating rhymes. So you gonna be a rapper regardless, whether you a CEO, the President of the United States, you always gonna think of a rhyme. I don’t care though, it’s not like he contradicting himself. He can make a hundred albums, I’mma cop! Son is the best.

Read the full interview at AllHipHop.com

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