Tuesday, June 17, 2003

The biggest difference between 50 Cent and Ja Rule is also the simplest: I (and, I think, most serious hiphop fans, as opposed to the pop kids) believe 50.

Ja Rule just feels phony, whether playing the thug or the loverman. He’s all about the Cristal, the jewels, and the ladeez, and feels so smarmy I need a bath after hearing one of his records. And Ja? You’re no 2Pac, so just forget that, please. 50 Cent, on the other hand, reeks of realness: yeah, he may just be “into sex [and] not into makin’ love,” but he’ll cut you, too. He’s hard. And as opposed to Ja’s sweet songs (“Mesmerize,” “Just Between Me and You”), 50’s “21 Questions” asks genuine questions (to wit: “if I didn’t smell so good, would you still hug me?”) rather than being filled up with empty sentiment and platitudes.

It also comes down to their mentors. Ja’s is Irv Gotti, the self-styled East coast man-who-would-be-Suge (Knight). 50’s is Eminem. Need I go on?

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