With his Mood Muzik 4 mixtape on the horizon, hip-hop's resident Jersey MC talks reality shows, girlfriends (see: Esther Baxter), Eminem and his next studio album. —Keith Murphy
VIBE: How strange is it that you've become this online tabloid fixture because of your relationships with Gloria Velez, Tahiry Jose and Ester Baxter?
Joe Budden: I really didn’t expect all the tabloid stuff. But you have to take everything that comes along with the blessings that come your way.
There’s even a clip of you and Ester playing kickball together. Are you trying to rub it in?
[Laughs] I’ve never meant to. My relationships just happen to be [of interest]. So I don’t mind it…I take it with a grain of salt.
What are your thoughts on MTV’s Jersey Shore?
I’ve never seen not one episode. But from what I hear about the show, it’s about Italians who call themselves Guidos, right? I don’t know…I wouldn’t want anyone to watch a show like that and say, “This is what’s happening in New Jersey as a whole.” I know that much just from listening to all the talk about Jersey Shore. But hey, it’s a successful show, so more power to them.
Given the interest in your own personal life, have any of the cable networks approached you about starring in your own reality show?
I’ve been offered quite a few reality shows. But I’m not going to conform for the sake of compelling television. You’ll never see a Joe Budden dating show. That’s just not going to happen.
So you are going to deny us your life of omnipresent eye candy?
Who knows [laughs]? But you’ll never see me associate myself with anyone who I’ve disassociated myself with just for the element of television. If I were to do a reality show, it would have to be on my own terms.
I can see it now: Joe Budden: The Ultimate Catch.