Guru Starts Label, Working On New Projects

Guru, the mouthpiece

for Gangstarr, has embarked on a solo deal that will spawn a pair of albums for

the veteran rapper in 2005.

“We have

a new project, a new venture. The label is called 7 Grand and the project is

called Guru 7.0,” the veteran rapper announced to

Additionally, Guru

revealed that he’s already secured worldwide distribution though Studio

Distribution, who has also released projects for Freddie Foxxx, of

the Black Eyed Peas, Jazzy Jeff, Pete Rock and Marley Marl.

The Guru 7.0

album is slated to drop on April 19, 2005.

The rapper said

that he’s found a new start with a relatively new partner in producer

Solar, who co-crafted the music with Guru.

“We're very

excited about a label because it’s a chance for myself and Solar to take

total control over our musical destinies, so to speak,” Guru explained.

“I came in the game at a time when everybody was signing to the majors.

The independence wasn’t that big. That stuff came after my [initial] era.”

With the advent

the indie market, Guru said that he’s been able to exchange information

with his younger peers and shifted the direction of his career.

“I was able

to look at the younger cats and see what they were doing and learn from them

as opposed to being one of those bitter cats looking at the young dudes in a

spiteful way. I could never be that dude,” he continued.

Agreeing, Solar

said, “In essence, [we ’re saying] how can we take this to the next

level. We learned from [younger artists], but it’s also an opportunity

for them to learn from us as opposed to being preachy.”

In the past Guru

has dabbled in the independent market with labels like Ill Kid Records, which

spawned acts like Jeru Tha Damaja, Group Home and Bahamadia.

“7 Grand

is more thought out [than previous ventures]. This is one stage, for lack of

a better word. Ill Kid was more underground,” Guru stated. “7 Grand

is an opportunity to be that great entity in the marketplace in the template

of a Bad Boy or Roc-A-Fella. This is just a different version.”

Presently, Guru

is the first artist on the label with others to be revealed at a later date.

Guru also stated that the fourth installment of his Jazzmatazz series

would drop in 2005.

While rumors have

been rampant that Gangstarr had broken up, Guru clarified that he and DJ Premier

were still a unit.