Mase Reflects on His Decision to Leave Rap: ‘Everything Now That We See Playing Out Was All the Things I Escaped’

The rapper suggested that destiny has a lot to do with his success with 'It Is What It Is.'

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While discussing his belief that destiny can play a role in people's lives, Mase reflected on his decision to give up rap at the height of his popularity.

Around the 1-hour point of the March 22 episode of It Is What It Is with co-host Cam'ron, Mase looked back on his decision to take a five-year hiatus from music from 1999-2004, during which he enrolled at Clark Atlanta University and became an ordained minister. "When you're put on the earth, there's somewhere you supposed to be," he said. "But you could pick any place. That's just like me, right? I took my life, I was doing music, and I said, 'You know what? I'm not going to do music. I'm going to go over here.' ... All you get to do in life is pick your choice, but the consequence you don't get to pick."

He said that people will know if they made the right decision in life based on the end result, which prompted a question about whether his choice to leave rap was the right decision. "I did," he responded. "Everything now that we see playing out was all the things I escaped. The car, the shine, the Loon, Puff Daddy... The Craig Mack, the Biggie Smalls. So even though I made those decisions and it cost me money, that's why I got with Killer [Cam] and they gave me the money back. I didn't lose no money. Destiny."

He said the question coming up further highlighted why he believes in destiny. "I couldn't have planned that," he said after laughing. "You asked me the right question and we at the right place, this is how [it] was meant to go, man."

The pivot to It Is What It Is has proved fruitful for Mase and Cam, who shared with Complex last year that they've gone from receiving offers related to the podcast from $90,000 to $13.5 million.

While Mase and Cam usually have fun on It Is What It Is, they frequently get serious about subjects that matter to them and some of the unfortunate situations they've found themselves in. Last month, for example, Mase opened up about how his former business manager scammed him.

"When I first got a deal with Bad Boy Records right, I think it was my first business manager. He ran off not just with my money, he ran off with everybody money, so we ain't have no money to pay taxes," Mase recalled. "This n***a ran off with everybody money like, we couldn't find them, and it was so easy to just say, 'Oh DMX, he ain't got the money because of this' or 'This person ain't got the money because of that' and then when I look back, I think a bunch of us...I think it was, I don't want to say nobody name, but it was a few rappers more than a handful of."

Mase hasn't released a solo single since 2013, but the rapper did make a comeback in 2004 after his five-year hiatus and made another brief comeback in 2009.

Check out what Mase had to say about his decision to walk away from rap above.

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