Jimmy “Henchmen” Rosemond: Out of the Shadows Part One

J immy Henchmen’s name has been met with equal parts fear and contempt since Tupac venomously barked the emerging mogul’s name on “Against All Odds,” a creative highpoint of the rapper’s Makaveli album. A decade later, Jimmy Rosemond attempts to shake the negative notions about him in exchange for the numerous positive strides he’s made […]


immy Henchmen’s name has been met with equal parts fear and contempt since Tupac venomously barked the emerging mogul’s name on “Against All Odds,” a creative highpoint of the rapper’s Makaveli album. A decade later, Jimmy Rosemond attempts to shake the negative notions about him in exchange for the numerous positive strides he’s made as a businessman and person.

As the CEO of Czar Entertainment, The 40-year-old manages the careers of The Game, Mario Winans, Brandy, Smitty, Trillville, Sharissa and has recently visited his native Haiti to help underprivileged children from the L’Athletique d’Haiti soccer program. Henchmen’s aspirations, which include feature films, may be stunted if a recent conviction doesn’t go well at sentencing. In January 2006, Rosemond was found guilty of beating a Washington D.C. disc jockey during an appearance with his artist The Game. He maintains his innocence, but admits to facing a jagged crossroads on his road to resurgence.

Find infamy, insight and inspiration in the ever-changing story of Jimmy “Henchmen” Rosemond.

AllHipHop.com: Ethan Browne’s book, Queens Reigns Supreme came out last year, what were your thoughts on that, you were interviewed for the book, right?

Jimmy Henchmen: Nah, I was interviewed for [another] article, and they used some of my statements from that in the book. I’m really upset that I’m portrayed in the light that [the author] portrayed me, and that was a small issue that we dealt with. I’m learning more and more that if this is what writers really want to write about, this ain’t what I’m really about. I don’t make the kind of money I make yearly from beef – really, it hurts my image you know what I’m saying.

AllHipHop.com: Right, right.

Jimmy Henchmen: I’m not the East Coast version of Suge Knight. I’m far from it. In fact, I’m trying to find somebody right now who can say I hung ‘em out a window or made them sign a bad contract, so that some of these rumors could at least be somewhat factually true. I mean, outside of this [Washington DC] radio incident, – which was all lies – outside of that, there was nothing on my record to show that I’m that kind of person that people are really trying to portray me to be. And I just attribute that ‘cause people want a villain in the business, and I guess then that I became that villain.

AllHipHop.com: You had a comment for Suge Knight at one point, “Suge didn’t want any problems with me,” or something along those lines. Do you remember saying that?

Jimmy Henchmen: Yeah, I remember saying that. Back then, I should be n***as’ hero for saying that, you know what I’m saying. You got the schoolyard bully, and you got one guy is not only willing but able to pass it to him. And I have always been confronted with the situation, and he’s never, ever [done anything]. I’m a small dude [too]. I came up fighting the bully. I’m always with the underdog. I’ve never liked the way he did his, I’ve never liked it. Our paths have crossed several times and that’s been the vibe always, you know the bully never wants to fight the n***a back, who’s ready to fight him. But those are the battles I’d rather fight, you know, [than] f**king [DJ] Zxulu. I need 15 n***as to whip yo’ ass, come on, come on, man. It ain’t even in my demeanor till a n***a say something to me, and then I just go off and just whip his ass like that, that ain’t even what I’m about man. [When] I grew up in the late ‘70s, early ‘80s, at least a f**king punk just stood in a punk’s place.

AllHipHop.com: Yeah, do you think that image of a villian has helped you at all, in some other ways?

Jimmy Henchmen: I think that image has got me convicted in the state of Maryland. It’s cool and fun, and it’s like it’s wrestling, but it ain’t cool and fun when this n***a is being prosecuted and persecuted for that image. I believe the government has been trying to do to me all my life since I’ve been a kid, a troublesome kid coming up.

AllHipHop.com: How do you look back on the radio station incident now?

Jimmy Henchmen: You know, I don’t even hate [DJ Zxulu]. I’m just a little upset that he let himself be used like that. Because if he wanted to sue, that was one thing. But him trying to send me to the penitentiary, that’s a whole other issue. We agreed to fight, and I don’t know how a fight turns into an assault.

AllHipHop.com: Right, right. Now what does this mean to you legally? I know you have a previous record, I heard you’re facing about ten years but aside from that —

Jimmy Henchmen: I’m not facing 10 years. See that’s the thing that people fail to realize you, the charge carries up to 10 years, but I’m not taking 10 years.

AllHipHop.com: Okay.

Jimmy Henchmen: If the kid had a broken rib, if the kid had a broken jaw, if the kid was pissing blood like he had claimed he was in his initial statement, – then I may have to face 10 years. But [from the] evidence that came out, he was given two Motrin’s, and sent home. [He was] in the hospital for three hours, and I’m sure two hours of that was waiting on the doctor, you know. And you know medical reports show that nothing was wrong with him.

AllHipHop.com: There seems to be a perception that you know, everybody that went to jail is now coming in to the game, either as a rapper or an executive. Is this true or is this just a misconception, you know how do you feel about that?

Jimmy Henchmen: I definitely feel there’s a misconception. It’s the industry’s responsibility of how they market the artists – and I mean, I may be to blame of that also for Game. I mean, there’s other people to blame for 50 [and other artists]. It worked for ‘Pac. It worked for 50, and then it worked for Game as a gang-banger. People have tried to use those things to market and promote their artists. We are in a time of reality TV, where people are going into people’s homes, and wanting to see real life.

AllHipHop.com: So moving on, what’s good on The Game’s album?

Jimmy Henchmen: We’re trying to slate for June 6, 06, 2006 [or 6/6/06] Because the name of the album is Doctor’s Advocate, not The Devil’s Advocate. We’re looking to destroy all haters and non-believers. So that’s why 666, 06/06/06 is an opportune date for the “Doctor’s Advocate.” You know so we’re hoping for that and we’re hoping to complete a Brandy’s album we’re working on right now. We’re also looking at a Smitty record on J Records.

AllHipHop.com: Do you think there’s a perception that people believe that a sophomore slump may hit The Game? Plus, there were a lot of the forces that were behind him initially?

Jimmy Henchmen: We’re looking to dispel all of those messages, and all of those [beliefs] on that date. I wish I could give you a good [taste] of what the kid’s album sounds like because it’s definitely, it’s definitely the making of a classic all over again, without some of the elements that was involved before, you know. In fact, when you got the good [Dr. Dre] it’s hard to really know what’s the real element behind this whole album anyway. We’re just waiting for Dr. Dre to sprinkle some of his medicine on it.

AllHipHop.com: Now, will Game chill on the G-Unit stuff?

Jimmy Henchmen: Yeah, absolutely. It’s taken its course. You know one of the bigger fears that Game had in the beginning when the whole G-Unite campaign started was that, we’ve all witnessed what 50 was allowed – and you know, I say that with exclamation mark – that’s what 50 was allowed to do. At that time, Ja Rule was running things and Murder Inc. was running things, and then there’s a little outbreak in one of the parish, but you get wind of it, but you don’t even really pay it no mind. And you don’t know that, that little rumble can turn into the overthrow of the whole empire. And we watched how 50 was allowed to do that to Murder Inc. So all we did was take the lesson that 50 taught us, and we seen how easily he can mash a person. We didn’t allow him to do that with Game. Game is a viable artist. And it would have been easy for him to do that so we went on a campaign too. And so we didn’t go, you know for 50, we just went after the brand.

AllHipHop.com: Did you ever have any issues with Interscope? At one point, there were rumors that 50 commanded them not to mess with The Game anymore…

Jimmy Henchmen: The rumors were all from 50. Those wasn’t real rumors, you know? My conversations with the head of Interscope always was “How could we drop a guy who sold four million records?” Come on, [Game] generated $40 million dollars for us, says drop him and give him to somebody else because of 50, come on? It was almost like everybody was saying, Jay-Z was gonna diss Game at his [“I Declare War”] concert, and [meanwhile], I’m having conversation with Jay-Z and he’s like, “Man, what? I ain’t doing that s**t, man, f**k,” you know what I mean? People put those rumors out there. It was never no real rumors. But I believe that you know 50 and his crew put those rumors out there to try to weaken Game, and in fact, it only has made this kid’s album the most anticipated.

AllHipHop.com: Right, what did you think of 50’s reply diss?

Jimmy Henchmen: That sure enough wasn’t the half of the [potency of] “300 Bars,” so I mean what we’re finding out now, even myself, even Interscope, even 50 is that Game is a better lyricist than we kind of thought he was before.

AllHipHop.com: Tell us how you lined up with Brandy…

Jimmy Henchmen: You know what, it’s funny you would say that because that’s the first thing people kind of think when they see us together or even see us, you know they hear about you know that we hooked up. You know the thing is, is that, you know artists sometimes need new ideas, and innovative ideas, and ideas that isn’t of the ordinary idea, you know. And they need people round ‘em to take chances and stuff like that. So, in my opinion, I think Brandy, the best move of getting somebody like me because I’m not the traditional thinker in the music business. Brandy is a real down to earth person who went through ordinary things, except that she’s on TV everyday, while we don’t really see her as that. Maybe some people look at her as a spoiled brat but, you know even me when I got to meet her and get to really know her, she’s really down to earth and goes through the ordinary stuff that regular girls go through, [like] heartbreak. She done had a baby out of wedlock and how many, that’s what a lot of the hood girls go through but, man, she’s going through that and in Hollywood lifestyle, even with that clean living.

AllHipHop.com: She’s at a pivotal image point in her career.

Jimmy Henchmen: The thing with Brandy is that she’s in that crossroad of people remembering her as the little girl, and now Brandy done grew up and she’s in that kind of space where people don’t know how to take her. So you know, I really see Brandy as the next Whitney Houston. As that, she can put that gown on and put a mic in front of her and blow her heart out and I can also see her as the girl in the jeans, you know what I’m saying? So, you know you take those two elements together you can definitely have a great all around album that can sell a lot of records worldwide.