Tha Realest Leaves Tha Row, Preparing Debut Album

Rapper Tha Realest

has become the latest artist to leave Suge Knight’s Death Row Records imprint

and recently inked a deal with Omerta Entertainment/Tommy Boy.

The Oakcliff, Texas native

said he suffered numerous setbacks while recording for Death Row, including

getting shot in front of a recording studio in 1999.

With his release secured,

the rapper said he hopes his long awaited debut album Witness Tha Realest

will push him to the forefront of Hip-Hop.

"They say: 'good things

come to those who wait.' The position I was in at Death Row wasn't right for

me,” Tha Realest said. “I didn't always get the due credit I believe

I deserved and I finally got out of that deal. I put so many songs on Witness

Tha Realest because so many people have been waiting so long for my CD

to drop. You won't have to fast forward through any of the songs on the CD.”

The rapper made his debut

on the platinum "Gang Related" soundtrack in 1997, under the name

Tenkamenin. In 1999 he changed his name to Tha Realest.

His debut album features

an all-star cast of Hip-Hop artists, including Fat Joe, Dub C, B-Legit, Aaron

Hall, Ritchie Rich, Dru Down, Napoleon, Devin Tha Dude, C-Bo, Swoop G, Val Young,

and Kola Locc.

“You're gonna' have

to give me an hour and ten minutes of your time when you listen to this CD,”

The Realest explained. “I'm not about to give you only three songs worth

listening to, $15 is lunch money for a lot of kids. With Witness Tha Realest,

I'm a holla at you. I'm going to give you something that you can knock for a

while man. Value for your dollar is long overdue in today's music market.”

The first single from the

album is "Sumthin Like A Pimp," which features contributions from

Devin Tha Dude and Dru Down.

Witness Tha

Realest hits stores July 12 on Omerta Entertainment/Tommy Boy.