Beanie Sigel is an amazing rapper who makes the absolute worst life choices. The dude just cannot stay away from the slammer. In 2005, at the peak of his group State Property's rise and the same year he dropped his third solo album The B. Coming, Beans was sent away for ten months for illegally possessing a gun. It fucked his career all the way up. He got out, made some records, but never fully recovered.
Then, this past July, Beanie was sentenced to two years in jail for failing to file taxes, with the sentence set to begin on September 12, 2012. This week, though, Beanie dropped a new solo album called This Time on the revamped Ruffhouse label. It was like his way of saying “Fuck you, I may be going to jail, but I still got raps and I'm not done yet.” He even booked a small tour, which he called the “Pre-Prison Tour,” and he was supposed to play Late Night With Jimmy Fallon on September 6.
Don't hold your breath. That shit's probably not gonna happen now because Beanie got busted early yesterday morning by state cops while crusing with a buddy on I-95. The staties found a gun, a small amount of marijuana, several pills, some prescription bottles, a bottle of codeine syrup and $4,650 in cash. In short, Beanie is almost definitely totally fucked. He's just not capable of ever, ever, ever doing the right thing.
Back in January, before any of this shit happened, I had an unexpected phone conversation with Beanie. I was interviewing another Philadelphia rapper, Young Chris (also a State Property veteran), and Beans randomly snatched the phone out of Chris's hands and started talking to me. During this brief chat, he talked about State Property's comeback. As a big fan of Beanie, and State Prop, I was stoked to hear how optimistic, confident and sober he sounded. For a split second, it all seemed possible.
Listening to the tape yesterday afternoon, after everything that's happened since, it all just seems really fucking sad. Here's how it went down.
Noisey: Hello? Chris…you still there?
Unknown Voice: Yo, yo, what's the dealie?
What's up? Who's this?
It's Beanie Sigel.
Oh. How's it going?
Beanie Sigel: I'm good. I'm in the lab with Chris cooking shit up.
Chris and I were just talking about the possibility of a State Property comeback.
Yeah, yeah. That's what we doing. We coming. We definitely coming to claim our spot back. We were running forever, so we wanted to take a break and enjoy our families. Everybody had to chill and relax and be regular for a minute. We still got it. We never stopped. We was under the biggest label running, so we was always on a roll. We never had a chance to sit back, so we missed out on a lot of important shit, like kids' first steps and birthdays and all that shit. Everything happens for a reason, though, and now everybody's got their heads clear. Now, we ready to get back in there and get at it. We ready to go in. The music game needs us. There ain't been nothing like State Property since NWA, man. We always wanted to be the people's choice. Now everybody's following the blueprint State Property created.
I agree. I want State Property to come back.
Definitely. We coming. We got tracks in the bag already. It's like we never took a break. We in the studio banging out records. It's amazing to me how everyone has gotten better since. Rapping is a skill, and you gotta always work on it. You know, ballers gotta go to the gym and shoot a thousand jump shots and work on their drills. You gotta always practice.
When you do put out a new State Property album, is it gonna be self-released?
Oh, definitely. We learned so much from being on a big label, and watching the moves that was going on. We took it as a learning experience. Everyone's gotta pay their dues the first time around. We was like a Cinderella story with the Roc. It just started happening for us, and we was rolling with it. We was in the car rolling. We was on the yacht, and we didn't know where it was going, and it turned into the Titanic. We had to be like Leonardo DiCaprio and get up outta that thing. We had to get up outta the water, you know what I mean? We fell in the water, but we ain't drowned.
At this point, Young Chris grabbed the phone, and my conversation with Beanie Sigel ended.