Juvenile Breaks Down His 25 Most Essential Songs

Juvenile f/ Lil Wayne, Baby, & Turk "Set It Off" (2001)

Album: Project English
Label: Cash Money/Universal
Producer: Mannie Fresh

Juvenile: “That was U.N.L.V’s song. I took the track and rapped over it because I loved the beat. That’s really the beat that got me to Cash Money. It was like ‘Damn, they’re making tracks like this now?’ I felt like—no disrespect to Yella Boy because he’s not living—but I felt like if I got on, it was gonna be a situation.

“You know what’s crazy? I was bigger than Cash Money when I signed there. Cash Money was trying to get their stuff going but they didn’t have too many guys working for them. They had just started their company with their first group, U.N.L.V. They had another guy before me named Kilo but he didn’t really do too good.

 

I was bigger than Cash Money when I signed there. Cash Money was trying to get their stuff going but they didn’t have too many guys working for them. But they had one power point—Mannie Fresh.

 

“But they had one power point—Mannie Fresh. I was looking for a good producer who could take me to the next level. Baby had been trying to get at me for years. Once I got the opportunity to record with Mannie, I thought everything was going to work for me and it did.

“U.N.L.V, they’re from my neighborhood. They’re from the same tree branch, the same limb. They signed to Cash Money and they started to make a little noise, but not on my scale. So when I signed to Cash Money, a lot of people in the city, especially people in the radio, said, ‘I think you’re going backwards.’

“I had a regional record that was playing on radio and I signed to a company that’s local. It didn’t it sit right with everybody, but I kept telling them, ‘Man, you don’t see what I see. I see a producer that’s great, that’s really better than the artist that’s singing on the song. If I could get over there and sing on those songs, the sky's the limit.’ I proved that I was right.”

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