The regular people are living in tough times. Jobs are scarce, crime and racism are up, and the headlines are getting unfathomable.
And although he 's been fortunate to live the second half of his life better off than the first half (as an intelligent but unchallenged, poor kid in South Philly), even Beanie Sigel is taking stock of how people are struggling.
So he's getting sick and tired of rap that throws decadence and lack of concern in people's faces. The word 'SWAG' in particular has him pissed off, and some of his closest, former allies are some of the main culprits for the so-called "opulent rap" that throws the "good life" in the faces of a struggling rap audience - without balancing it with some uplift.
That Beanie Sigel even cares about people in the 'hood may come as a surprise to some. He's been pegged as a bad boy over the years - a troublemaker with a propensity for the streets and a likely trigger-happy temper that doesn't make for good business.
But on a cool Brooklyn evening late last week, inside a small West Indian studio, that's not the Beanie Sigel we encounter. He's fun - full of laughs - like someone with a new lease on life. He runs down his music over the years that HAS taken people's problems into account. He recalls that he was and is those people, and immediately, "Feel It In The Air" and "This Can't Be Life" come to mind as two of his finest, emo moments.
He's also vocal but guarded - speaking his mind, but making sure that it comes out the right way. The new and improved Beanie, with a new EMI deal and The Classic album in the works, is thoughtful that way. He doesn't wish malice on his "enemies," but he does want them to stop making music that doesn't matter. Hmmm, okay, so it seems Beanie Sigel is like most rappers - a complex mixture of good and bad. We know his bad side well, but we're really starting to like the good. Check his exclusive video with AllHipHop.com below:
The Beanie Sigel exclusives keep coming this week on AllHipHop.com! Follow Beanie Sigel on Twitter (@BeanieSigelSP).