Album: Pain Is Love
Producer: Irv Gotti
Ja Rule: “I love ‘Always on Time.’ It’s just one of those records that’s fun. It kind of introduced Ashanti. She had done Big Pun’s record [‘How We Roll’], but she wasn’t featured. So it was kind of like a coming-out party.
“It was just a party record. I did records so fast. I hear the beat, I think of the hook. That record was put together very quickly. I wrote everything [Laughs].
That was my first number-one record. I didn't understand the magnitude of it at the time. A lot of those moments I didn't soak up the way most artists do nowadays because they know what it means.
“That was my first number-one record. I didn’t understand the magnitude of it at the time. Everybody was excited and I was like, ‘Great—what are we doing next?’ A lot of those moments I didn’t soak up the way most artists do nowadays because they know what it means. They know the meaning of it and know how big it is to have a number-one record or number-one album. Those things didn’t register to me like that.
“I was just happy to be in the studio making records, living my dream. I wanted to make records and people to like them and dig them. For me, that was happy. For it to go number one, I didn’t really understand how big that was. I do now, but I didn’t then.”