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Ray J: Respect My Hustle
Contributed by: CZA
Source: ballerstatus.com
Posted on: March 17, 2008 10:05 MST
Filed under: R&B

Ray J

PT Barnum was once quoted as saying, "There's no such thing as bad press," an adage that may have held true in his day, but then again, he never had to worry about TMZ publishing every sordid detail. Today's scandal could and usually is a career-ender for most of the celebrities who fall victim to it. That is unless you understand the game, and even better, know how to make it work for you just like Ray J did with his now infamous role in one of America's new favorite pastimes -- sex tapes.

How Ray J spun a bad situation into one that made him even more popular takes more than just a good publicist; it requires a charm and wit comparable to the greatest minds in history, an attribute he has in spades. For those that don't understand, we'll keep it simple. Ray J is a bona fide hustler. All I Feel is a new chapter in his life, one he is eager to set into motion but first, he wants to clear the air one last time. Love him or hate him you have to respect him.

BallerStatus.com: What's been going on with you lately?

Ray J: I've been busy just getting my new album, called All I Feel, off the ground with a new deal for my label, Knockout Entertainment, Koch and DEJA 34, Shaquille O'Neal's label. We're looking to make our impact this year, really make our presence felt. Ray J is coming; get ready because this is our summer.

BallerStatus.com: You put out a mixtape with DJ Kay Slay called Unkut that was, for a lack of a better word, uncut. What was the process for that?

Ray J: We went in on that one. We just wanted to air out all the little media s---. We just wanted to have some fun on there, put it in people's faces that we weren't afraid to do us. We're grown men, and as grown men, we should be able to speak on any subject we feel like. We wanted to confront it, once and for all and just put it behind us.

BallerStatus.com: There was a track on there where you came at Chris Stokes kind of raw.

Ray J: F--- that mother-----. Man, that n----'s a bitch. He's a thief. He tried to take my records and pull me off of television shows and put Marques Houston on the shows, basically replace me. It was a lot of weird things going on over there and I felt like he was trying to dig into my money and try to compromise my career. He and Marques Houston take it in the butt together. I'm real, so I say it how I see it.

BallerStatus.com: Was Kay Slay apprehensive about some of the topics you touched on?

Ray J: He was like, "I'm down with you, Ray, but you're really going in!" I told him that I needed to do this and he supported me. He's the type of person to let you be yourself, let you make your own decisions but he'll ride with you nonetheless.

BallerStatus.com: Let's talk about your new single, "Sexy Can I". How did it come to be?

Ray J: I already had the song written and because he had done "Sexy Lady," I felt it would be a good match. I did a couple records for him, so I called him and he returned the favor. He got on it and it was magical, and the rest is history.

BallerStatus.com: Who's featured on the album?

Ray J: An all-star cast for this one. We got The Game, Lil Wayne, Snoop Dogg, Lil Kim and my Knockout artists. It's a well rounded album, man. I promise. There isn't going to be anyone who can't vibe with something on the album. It completes everything that I've wanted to do for a long time.

BallerStatus.com: What kind of feel do you have on the album?

Ray J: It goes two different ways. It has a strong hip-hop approach to it, but it also has a strong R&B backbone. The album is one of those where you can find something that matches whatever setting you're in whether with your girl or going to the club or in the club or anywhere. It just fits like it's supposed to.

BallerStatus.com: What producers are coming through on this one?

Ray J: It's staying mostly inside my camp, but Rodney Jerkins gave me song strong ballads, enough to make you say, "Who got a lighter? Put it up!"

BallerStatus.com: When's the album release date?

Ray J: We're trying to get it out April 8th. The album will be here and the people can get to know me better. This is probably my best album so far and it's deeply personal and introspective. Y'all are going to love it.

BallerStatus.com: There's a rumor going around about you and Lil Kim. Is there any truth to that?

Ray J: Kim and I have been cool so long, it goes beyond her and I being together man. We got a lot of love for each other, and whatever she needs I have and vice versa. That's my heart and my other big sister. I'll ride all day for that girl.

BallerStatus.com: Where can fans find out more about you?

Ray J: Hit me up at MySpace.com/RayJ or my website RayJ.com.
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