Fat Joe Breaks Down His 25 Most Essential Songs

Fat Joe f/ Kool G. Rap & Apache “You Must Be Out Of Your Fuckin’ Mind” (1993)

Producer: Diamond D

Album: Represent

Label: Relativity

Fat Joe: “God bless Apache, right? Kool G. Rap, one of the greatest of all time. You see, that’s what I’m trying to tell you about when I look back on my career. There’s this interview, you can probably look it up on the Internet somewhere. It’s me at The Fever on Video Music Box, and I look mad young, and I’m talking about how my album is coming out in a month.

 

When I first started, I thought I was wack. The thing I had over everybody was that I was the realest rapper. For one, it was like, ‘He’s Spanish. And ain’t no nigga come out that’s Spanish talking that shit like that.’ And two, ‘This is the nigga we see at the clubs, beating up the whole club, icey. He’s the truth. Even though I knew I wasn’t as good as a Nas, I know they knew my stories were real.

 

“I had Black Sheep there with me, Nice & Smooth, Sadat X, Showbiz and A.G. That was the equivalent to having Drake, Lil’ Wayne, and fucking every other nigga you can think of that’s large, sitting next to you while you’re saying, ‘Yo, I’m coming out next month with my album.’ I was sitting there [recently] looking at that interview like, ‘What the fuck did that look like to a regular hip-hop fan?’ Like, ‘This nigga is with the powers that be!’

“I knew Kool G. Rap before I was rapping: I used to go to all the clubs and pop bottles, I met him like that. He’d come and hang out at my table and I started fucking with him. He’s really a beautiful person. And he was like one of the largest niggas on Earth at the time too. So he came to the studio in the Bronx with me.

“And Apache had that ‘Gangsta Bitch’ song out, which was the biggest song out of the year at that time. I knew Apache too from just being around in the clubs and all that. So I was like, ‘My man, I’m doing my album, and I need you to get on it.’ So he came and got on it. That was huge for me. Not even big. Beyond huge.

“When I first started, I thought I was wack. Lyrically, I thought I was wack. The thing I had over everybody was that I was the realest rapper. For one, it was like, ‘He’s Spanish. And ain’t no nigga come out that’s Spanish talking that shit like that.’ And two, ‘This is the nigga we see at the clubs, beating up the whole club, icey. He’s the truth.’

 

I have a scar above my wrist, where my fist is at, from a razor blade slash. I was in a fight, and a nigga tried to cut my face, and I literally blocked it.

 

“So even though I knew I wasn’t as good as a Nas, I know they knew my stories were real. Or if they verified and went back and asked their cousins from the Bronx or something, they would be like, ‘Yo, those are some crazy niggas right there.’

“But lyrically, I knew there was no way in the world that I could stand next to Kool G. Rap or Apache. But I grew up real violent. If you really analyze my music, there is a lot of violence in my music, because the Bronx at the era and time I was coming up was almost equivalent to how a Braveheart or Gladiator movie would be.

“I have a scar above my wrist, where my fist is at, from a razor blade slash. I was in a fight, and a nigga tried to cut my face, and I literally blocked it. So that comes out in my music. So for ‘You Must Be Out Of Your Fuckin’ Mind,’ getting the two hardest niggas out was necessary.”

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