T he Diplomats have proven themselves to indeed be a movement. However, some criticize that the movement ends after its Three Kings: Camron, Juelz Santana, and Jim Jones. Nobody could disagree more than Hell Rell.
Fresh out of jail, Hell Rell has gained endorsements from his own Dip-mates, Star of Star & Buc, and even from Underground King, Bun B. His upcoming debut, For the Hell of It isnt trying to be a work of art, but rather a stream of consciousness look at life from a wealthy, young Black male who sees a bright future for himself.
In a candid discussion with AllHipHop.com, Hell Rell speaks about his youth, his bid, and some interesting commentary regarding Fat Joe, Styles P, and the dudes who shot Cam in D.C. not to mention a label move, already? Hell Rell rocks the bells.
AllHipHop.com: What part of the Bronx are you from?
Hell Rell: Im from 175th and Weeks Avenue; the hottest block in the Bronx. You know they got the shit in the precinct, that big ass board in the precinct where they red dot all the hottest hoods in the Bronx. My block is red dotted, Weeks Avenue whats good.
AllHipHop.com: What did you listen to coming up?
Hell Rell: Big Daddy Kane, Rob Base.
AllHipHop.com: Rob Base?
Hell Rell: Yeah I f**ks with Rob Base. You already know, Its Takes Two was my s**t. Doug E. Fresh, Slick Rick.
AllHipHop.com: How do you get down in the studio, how do you approach making new material?
Hell Rell: I dont event write, Im a monster. I just go in there, throw the beat on. However Im feeling or whatever comes to mind. I dont go in the studio thinking, Im going to make a party song, or Im going to do a diss song. I write in my head. I actually developed that around the way; being on the corner hustling waiting for fiends to come through and cop my s**t, I was standing there would coming up with rhymes in my head. So by the time I got to where I had to go to lay it down, I had already memorized it.
AllHipHop.com: Okay, Im from the Bronx as well. Considering that we started this, its a shame that we havent really been popping since Big Pun was here. Why do you think we fell off so hard?
Hell Rell: I dont know what it is. Bronx n***as is always used for on something else. If a Harlem n***a is getting money, the Bronx n***a is the enforcer - hes the goon. Weve never been on some rap s**t, like we been on our real gorilla s**t. Now theres a lot of talent coming up in the Bronx. Like I be in the hoods, a lot of young n***as thats fire in the Bronx. Your boy Hell Rell is definitely taking us to the top. Shout out to Joe, I dont really know homey. But he aint really holding down the Bronx like that, no disrespect feel me? He doing what he do. He paved the way, but its consistency my n***a, you got to stay consistent.
AllHipHop.com: How you feel about Remy Ma and how she is repping the BX?
Hell Rell: I love Remy. Remy hardbody. She is the hardest chick in the game, right now.
AllHipHop.com: How did you hook up with Dipset before you went in?
Hell Rell: Me and Cam traveled in the same circles, we all knew the same people. Im from 1767 Weeks avenue in the Bronx. Jim used to live in 1801 in the Bronx, so I knew that n***a before he moved to Harlem and started his Harlem thing. So we basically knew each other, we all traveled in the same circles.
AllHipHop.com: What were you arrested for?
Hell Rell: I got caught with 200 grams in a fiends apartment. I actually made a sale in the fiends apartment. Undercovers came and kicked the apartment in. They charged the crack head with the 200 grams because it was her apartment.
AllHipHop.com: How was your time in prison?
Hell Rell: I was hotter than some n***as that was out there with a deal. No disrespect to G-Unit, but we started that mixtape s**t. Like when the first Diplomat mix tape came out, we had the streets on fire when Cam first signed to the Roc in 2002. I was featured on the Diplomats Volume 2. I was incarcerated at the time; I remember I had spit freestyles while I was in Rikers Island.
You had a bunch of hating ass n***as in there though. Jim took care of me when I was in. I stayed on the visiting floor, I had packages, I was fresh to def, I had jewelry, and I kept the weed. I was the weed man. All them n***as in jail do is read magazines and watch videos. So every magazine the Diplomats appeared in, they shouted me out, so n***as would be jealous because they knew I had something to come home to. A lot of n***as in jail be miserable because they have to go back to being on the corner or go back to being broke. I was a made man. I had that hate, but I came home without a scar on my face. So its nothing
AllHipHop.com: Did they try to test you because of that?
Hell Rell: Yeah! I aint special. It wasnt like, Oh, he Hell Rell, leave him alone. There were a couple of n***as that tried to come at me.
AllHipHop.com: Was there anybody else famous that you bumped into while you were in?
Hell Rell: I actually bumped into Shyne in Clinton. Shout out to Po, get home, my n***a. When I was there, Po was good. He was going onto the visiting floor. Russell Simmons came to see him when I was there, thats when he worked out his Def Jam deal. I only seen him one time. I wrote him one letter, he wrote me one letter, but that was on the strength that he knew who I was and I knew who he was. Chi Ali was there too. He got 20 to life. He was my n***a too.
AllHipHop.com: Flipping the jail time into a positive - how was your homecoming?
Hell Rell: My homecoming was retarded, B.
AllHipHop.com: Lets get into it.
Hell Rell: I came home August 13th, Friday the 13th. So I thought I was going to get hit by a bus, a train or stuck by lightning. A n***a coming home on Friday the 13th, thats a bad luck day. I didnt speak to Cam two weeks prior to me coming home.
AllHipHop.com: What joint you came home from?
Hell Rell: When you get released from jail, they give you a state ID thats valid for 90 days, a check for whatever is in your bank account. You get an account when you locked up. I came home with 7,000 in my account. They give you a pair of state greens and all star Converses. So I got on the state greens I didnt have nobody to send up my clothes over because I think my n***as picking me up. I was coming home with two other n***as and they stunted on me like, I thought you were Dipset, n***a? Where ya mans at now? So we standing at the at the Greyhound bus station and Im thinking, I got to go home on the bus. Next thing you know, my boy pulls out with the stretch white Excursion. Cam hops out with two tennis chains on his neck, takes two of them off, puts them on my neck and gives me a stack of 50,000. All in hundreds, a big ass knot the size of an X-Box. He put it in my hand and said, Welcome home, my n***a, lets get rich.
AllHipHop.com: What happened when you got back to the city?
Hell Rell: Soon as I got to the city, Killa said, What you want to do? You want to go shopping; you want to get some p*ssy? Want to get fresh? I said, Take me to the studio. Thats when I laid my verse for Family Ties.
AllHipHop.com: Who shut it down harder?
Hell Rell: Me! I went hard on him, no homo. I love my n***a, he came with 50,000. I spent that in two days. He gave me another 100,000. I spent that in two days and then I got my deal. So Ive been good ever since. He took care of me my whole time in jail; my n***as is stand up n***as. Everyone got their own little bulls**t, that goes in the crew. [It] aint no slimeball s**t over here. A lot of n***as breaking up. You see Death Of A Dynasty, because n***as get a little bit of money, and get big headed. F**k all that, its a team. I was here before all the Diplomats eagles and the pink Ranges, before Jims Jones and the Byrd Gangs and all that, and we still here for each other, feel me? Thats why we call ourselves a movement we knew each other before we got rich and we still here with each other.
AllHipHop.com: If the Diplomats were the 2006 Juice Crew, who would Hell Rell be?
Hell Rell: Kool G. Rap! The hardest in the group. [laughs]
AllHipHop.com: Youve been referring to your self as the hardest out. Styles P of the Lox was running with that title ever since he came home though.
Hell Rell: Its H.O. Its an abbreviation. It stands for hardest out, hungriest out, and home owner. A lot of these rappers still living with their mothers. I own homes. Thats one of my names. I f**ks with [Styles] P man, but P aint going harder than me man. Cmon on brother, you been in rap for ten years, youre supposed to have that retirement plan. You supposed to be living good, n***a. You got DJs running around with Bentley GTs, living better than rappers. I came in the game listening to these n***as. P is hard. But I dont feel he harder than me, and thats no disrespect, thats not starting no beef or nothing. He probably feel the same way about me, like, This little n***a dont go harder than me. But thats how I feel, I go harder.
AllHipHop.com: Were with you with Cam when he got popped in Washington D.C.?
Hell Rell: Nah, I was actually having a new born.
Hell Rell: Thank you, man. I was a having a baby shower, I got the call. You know those hating ass n***as man, they just hating because they cant ride in Lambos like us. Go to Miami ten times a year like us. Cam is that golden boy. N***as was just hating, that was out of hate.
AllHipHop.com: On the Get Em Daddy remix which you were on with him, Cam hinted at some O.Gs set him up.
Hell Rell: It is what it is, you never know. N***as is probably jealous of my n***a. Somebody sent the whistle, but you not gonna get me to dry-snitch.
AllHipHop.com: Nah, never that.
Hell Rell: Okay, Okay. But you never know. Thats just how he felt in the booth, feel me?
AllHipHop.com: Whats good with the album?
Hell Rell: [My] album is hardbody, Im glad I got artistic control over my project. Because if I didnt Id be on the block right now, because I refuse to undermine myself, or my style or my lyrics so Im glad Killa let me zone out on this album. By the way, I got one album deal at Koch. Im not signed to Koch, Im signed to Diplomat Records. So Im putting out one album Koch. The reason why I named it For The Hell Of It is because I got the money, I didnt do it for the money and Im not doing it for the fame. Im just doing it for the hell of it. Whatever Hell Rell felt that day, thats what, came out. If I was arguing with one of my b*tches or whatever whatever, and I was mad thats the type of mood I was in. It was no strategic plot or plan with this album. Its raw me straight out the pen. My next album, Imma sit down and come up with concepts and get deep into my brain and give you a piece of my life story. This one is straight for the hell of it.
AllHipHop.com: So you are just going to drop this one album and feel out any major label interests?
Hell Rell: Im doing a 100 [thousand] my first week, usually n***as end up doing a 100 [thousand] all together with their project. The reason I didnt come out with my album in 2004. I could of came out. Cam was like You want to come out, you sure? I had a buzz in 05, this year Ima be a house hold name. So when I drop this year, n***as is going to know my name and my face and my lyrics. I am coming out again fourth quarter with my major label album, Im not telling you who Im signing to, because I didnt sign the deal yet.