Posted by Dave
Rap News Network
7/27/2006 12:33:56 PM
Tags and topics realted to this article include Obie Trice. Hip Hop, Rap and New Releases.
A combination of drive, passion, talent and a healthy work ethic is arguably the best prescription to ward off a sophomore jinx. Eminem protégé Obie Trice has no need to worry. Since the release of his platinum 2003 debut, CHEERS, which sold more than 250,000 copies during its opening week, he has been in prep mode. In between joining Eminem on the Anger Management Tour in the U.S. and abroad, Obie has been gearing up for his latest set, SECOND ROUND’S ON ME.
The SECOND ROUND’S ON ME (which will be released on 8-15-06) album title has multiple meanings. “First, it’s my sophomore album,” Obie says matter-of-factly, “and then I’m keeping the whole bar theme going from CHEERS to SECOND ROUND’S ON ME.”
SECOND ROUND’S ON ME afforded the Shady Records artist the opportunity to step up into the role of executive producer, overseeing the completion of the album and culling some of hip-hop’s most noted beat makers including, Eminem, Jonathan “J.R.” Rotem, Akon, and 9th Wonder, among others.
“I did this album myself as opposed to Em just being right next to me like he was on CHEERS,” the Detroit native says. “I did it at my studio, brought it to him and that’s how we got it done. It felt good.”
SECOND ROUND’S ON ME captures Obie’s lyrical maturation that not only includes some of the humor and bravado from CHEERS, but more serious topics as well. “If they are expecting CHEERS, they are not gonna get it,” Obie says. “I developed lyrically. I’m talking about a lot of things that are important in the black community. It shows my growth as an artist and as a person.”
Flexing his honed lyrical chops, Obie opted to rhyme all of the lyrics on the spot without writing them down. “I would say eight bars, and then I would listen to the beat and then punch in the next eight bars,” Obie says. “When I heard the music, I was ready to go. I did not want to sit down and write on paper. I would get an idea and want to say it at that moment.”
Last summer, Obie gave fans a dose of the new album when he leaked the rock-fueled “Wanna Know” which samples Van Halen. The song was featured on Entourage, the hit HBO comedy series produced by Mark Wahlberg. “Snitch,” the album’s official first single and collaboration with Akon, is a melodic lesson on the perils of betrayal. Neo-Soul singer Jaguar Wright joins him on “Love,” a compelling account of relationships gone awry. Nate Dogg provides the hook for “After Party,” and “Detroit Boys” includes appearances from Eminem, Big Hurk, and Trick. “Cry Now,” the last song recorded for the album, is also one of the most poignant.
Over humming bass, kick drums and sharp horns, “Cry Now” was written as Obie recovered from a near fatal gun wound in the head. On New Year’s Eve 2005, Obie was shot while driving on a Detroit freeway. Though he was treated and released from the hospital on the same day, the doctor was unable to remove the bullet from his skull.
In the emotional song, Obie professes that he does not want to be the next hip-hop artist slain: “Catch me in a Benz like ‘Pac/ Catch me in a Tahoe like Big/ No.”
When recording “Cry Now” Obie let the adrenaline take over. “I had a whole lot of anger in me,” he says. “I had a whole lot of confusion in me. I didn’t understand why these dudes would come at me like that, especially since I am an artist who shows love to my city. I was just in a zone.”
Obie’s art, family and faith helped him overcome the anger and depression he experienced. However, the same feelings resurfaced just four months later when
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