"The game as a whole is fake,” Mr. Round of Applause said last summer. “I'm tired of just going through what I go through and then at the end of the day, the forecast is always rain. It always rains on my world. It's so many different haters, fake smiles, fake hugs, so to prevent myself from doing anything, I'd just rather quit. I’d rather work at Wal-Mart than rap.” Of course, that didn’t last long. Catch Waka on tour with Drake, Meek Mill and J. Cole this summer.
Lupe Fiasco was “85 percent sure” that he was leaving the rap game in 2007. “My whole energy for making hip hop music is slowing down.” But his energy saw a comeback in 2011 with the release of his long-awaited Lasers, which debuted at #1.
Soulja Boy took to Twitter to announce his supposed retirement in 2009. “F**k all of y’all,” he tweeted. “I’m taking my money and leaving. Gonna go blow kush and live my 2nd dream. This rap s**t lame now.” His third album, 'The DeAndre Way,' dropped a year later.
The man on the moon was plotting retirement before his debut album even dropped in 2009. "After the release of my first LP this summer, I am not making any more solo albums,” he wrote on his blog. “The drama that comes with it is more overwhelming than [what] I was dealing with when I was piss-poor broke.” Two solo albums, one prime-time acting gig and an alternative collaborative project later…
Jay-Z loves to flash the retirement card. Reasonable Doubt was supposed to be his first and only album. In 2003, 'The Black Album' was supposed to be his last album (he even did a “final show” in Madison Square Garden and released a documentary titled Fade to Black). Then came the side collaborations (R. Kelly, Linkin Park). Then came 'Kingdom Come.' Retirement what? "I think I pulled the retirement ripcord too many times,” he admitted in 2007. “People looking at me like, 'Please shut up.' I was looking at 'Fade to Black' the other day. I was embarrassed … I had to turn it off.”