Shyne Talks Diddy, 'Gangland' Album, and Returning To America
Over two years since completing his prison stint stemming from the much publicized 1999 Club New York shootings, Sean "Diddy" Combs' former protégé Shyne is now focused on investing into global technology. The rapper turned Belize Goodwill ambassador and Orthodox Jew (now legally known as Moses Levi) recently partnered with Israeli startup, All Our Power, an international movement that aims to negotiate with large retailers on behalf of its members for long-term discounts.
During a recent interview with the Huffington Post, the former Bad Boy recording artist opened up on his latest business venture, reconciling with Diddy in Paris, upcoming music projects, and his plan to return to the United States. --Brennan Williams
What led to you becoming an investor of All Our Power?
I’m good friends with Joe Kalfa, the founder. When he told me about it I definitely felt like putting my bank where my mouth is because it’s definitely something that I believe in. I’m always for the underdog because I’ve always been the guy who was disenfranchised and I feel this is an important step for people that are being marginalized, taken advantaged of and left out to come together. It’s a global crisis right now, everything is collapsing financially around the world, so I think now more than ever the little guy needs to get with the other little guy and that could be 10 million of those underdogs and they could dictate the prices that they could dictate. As consumers they can exercise their purchase power and I think that’s important, because everybody ain’t ballin’, everybody ain’t a millionaire.
In the past you’ve always spoke from an underdog’s perspective through your music. Are you still trying to convey that message in any of your new recordings?
Yeah, I have the “Gangland” street album coming out in July. And then I have another album coming out in December. You know, just music to feed the people and reestablish the brand. And then my official solo album is going to come out probably out in the spring of 2013.
Are you releasing the Gangland albums via Island/Def Jam or independently?
I’m independent. I’m really all about entrepreneurship, and that’s what All Our Power is about. All Our Power is understanding that you don’t have to think what the big corporations to tell you. I never liked bullies. I was always the dude that would get up on the table and try to knock the bully out. I like to stand up for what is right. And it’s the same thing with my music and with my business. In today’s world especially, you definitely don’t need to be with a major [label]. The place of a major is way later, and that could just add to what you already got going on. But you have to be an entrepreneur in today’s market. So for me, major distribution is in the pipeline, but as far as what we have to do now with the street album is feed the people with Gangland Records.
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