In the early 2000s, Fat Joe and Irv Gotti, along with Ja Rule and Ashanti, combined to make the only good commercial rap music.
Who can forget cranking up the volume of the great “What’s Luv?” The hair on my arm still stands up every time I hear Fat Joe yell, “Turn the fucking mic on,” at the beginning of the song, a moment perhaps only matched by his period correct other f-word use on the song “Lean Back.”
“We Thuggin’” more than earns its place on the list of songs featuring R. Kelly that are simply too good to be forgotten. I don’t care how many teenage girls he peed on.
Sadly, Fat Joe and Irv Gotti have since had a falling out over remarks made by the latter on a recent episode of Drink Champs, and I’m not sure if Fat Joe and Ja Rule are on especially good terms either. They may never combine to recapture the magic found on those recordings.
If Ashanti appreciates Fat Joe coming to her defense, she probably won’t reward him by allowing him to score, raising the question of what purpose his intervention served. (She can’t very well claim to not make sweet, passionate love to people in the music industry.)
On Drink Champs, Irv Gotti revealed that he and Ashanti were once an item, on the low. He would hit that, and then he would come up with especially good ideas for songs while he was in the shower washing his schlong. Nullus. He wasn’t sweating when she got with Nelly, which can be a sad reality for guys who don’t have a very good physique, or so I’ve been told, but then she distanced herself from him when it looked like he might get locked up for money laundering.
Lately, she’s been trying to get him to give her the rights back to her music, but it sounds like he couldn’t if he wanted to. If she wanted to own her music outright, he says, she’d have to buy it from some guy who sounds like the name of a ‘70s-era Bond villain.
If she thinks she might be able to offer him a little something in exchange for her publishing, she’d better hop to it. According to Noreaga, she still posts decent thirst traps on Instagram, but it can be difficult to tell from a photograph to what extent, if any, skin retains any elasticity, nor can you pick up that moth ball smell girls develop in their late 30s.
Irv Gotti seems proud to have taken down Ashanti, which, why shouldn’t he be? Not only did he hit that. He hit that back when it was about something. It might be his career’s crowning achievement, especially when you consider that he didn’t actually produce any of the songs he’s credited on. (Dr. Dre doesn’t produce his own songs either, he says.)
Would Irv Gotti be putting Ashanti’s business in the street if she hadn’t cheated on him with Nelly, turned her back on him at the most difficult moment in his career and threatened to rob him of his right to benefit from his intellectual property by recording new versions of her album a la Taylor Swift? You want people to know that you scored with an especially attractive woman, and she’s not likely to let him hit it again anyway.
If I scored with Ashanti, or any reasonably attractive woman, I’d keep it top secret. I’d never want a potential conquest to think that I’d ruin her reputation by revealing that she’d stoop low. I have a hard enough time as it is. Irv Gotti has no such concerns. He recently got some money from BET, in addition to whatever he got for Ashanti’s publishing, so he doesn’t have to sweat appearing to be a good person.
He’s on the outs with Fat Joe, but they might eventually reconcile, once Fat Joe realizes there’s no benefit to playing the white knight. Has he never seen an episode of “Cops?” Girls don’t like it when you defend them from another guy. If anything, this might drive her back into the arms of Irv Gotti. She might get her publishing back just yet!