Fat Joe says he feels as youthful as ever. “I’m 14 years into my career, and the girls still think I’m handsome,” Fat Joe said during a recent stay in New York. Mr. Crack had his usual grin that shines like glitter and a few of them sparkly things on his neck and wrists. The Terror Squad Don says life in the rap is great.
“Truthfully, I feel mad young,” he said. “I don’t feel my age. I’m so current, and I’m in the streets. I never got old. I don’t know what ‘played-out’ is.”
Joe was only in NY for a short stay; he had to hurry back to Miami where he was getting ready to film the video for “I Won’t Tell” with J. Holiday. The song is the first official single from Joe’s next LP, The Elephant in the Room.
“This new single I got with J. Holiday is my grown-and-sexy, young-boy-fresh look,” Joe said. “I always wanted a Biggie ‘One More Chance‘; something they play in the club that was hard but smoothed out. Mad people are coming through for the video shoot: Lil’ Kim, Juelz Santana, the LOX, Busta, Weezy, Birdman, Rick Ross, T-Pain, everybody! We on some unity right now. We ain’t with that bullsh*t.”
Although the love for Joe has always been evident (his very first video, for “Flow Joe,” was cameo-heavy), Crack says he’s being slept on by some fans and media.
“With hip-hop music, I been in the game for 14 years,” he said. “I’ve come with so many hits and been so consistent and got better and better, but I still see nobody bigs me up like, ‘Joe’s one of the hottest n—as.’ Even though it’s right in your face. The elephant is right in your face. Even though I keep hitting you with #1 hits. How could you ignore this? That’s pretty much how I came up with the album title. When you think about some of your favorite rappers, a lot of n—as sell off of the hype of what they brought to the table before. A lot of our favorite rappers haven’t had a hit in years. I keep coming. Real talk. I’m being real.”
“I Won’t Tell” is about cheating. On the record, Joe makes promises that he’ll keep his mouth shut even though he is creeping with a woman who already has a man. The street joint from The Elephant is called “Crack House” and features Lil Wayne.
Swizz Beatz, Rick Ross, Cool & Dre, Street Runner, DJ Khaled and DJ Premier all pop up on the album. The DJ Premier track is called “Thank God for That White.” “Primo gave me his hottest since ‘Kick in the Door.’ Remember I told you,” Joe promised. Oh, and Diddy makes an appearance too. Let’s not forget about him.
“I got Diddy,” Joe laughed. “That might be the next single. I made Diddy sing my hook like he did on ‘Last Night.’ That joint is produced by Danja. That’s that crossover-big smash-hit record.”
The Elephant in the Room comes out March 11, but before that, Joe is making his first-ever mixtape. “I’mma do it in this next month,” he said. “I’mma write mixtape material, do 12 joints for the mixtape, put a couple of unreleased joints on there and let it go. I never wanted to do a mixtape, but I’m going in.”
The Bronx native also has his sights set on recording with new recruits O.Z. from Miami, H-Mob and the Leader, as well as his loyalists: Cool & Dre, DJ Khaled and Tony Sunshine.