The name “Memphis Bleek” elicits all sorts of negative connotations within Hip-Hop discussions. As a former Roc-A-Fella artist and the unofficial Jay Z sole heir apparent, the Marcy Projects rapper did spawn several gold albums and stellar guest appearances throughout his career.
But if Memphis can point to any singular event, line or verse that lead to him being labeled as the most notorious weed carrier of all time, it would be his man Hov’s shout out to him on Kanye West’s “Diamonds From Sierra Leone (Remix)” from the 2005 album Late Registration.
The line goes, “Bleek could be one hit away his whole career/As long as he’s alive, he’s a millionaire/And even if I die, he’s in my will somewhere/So he can just kick back and chill somewhere,” and according to the man born Malik Cox, that is all she wrote for his credibility as a rapper.
Bleek tells ThisIs50’s Jack Thriller that he is not a fan of the well-intentioned nod saying, “I don’t like that line ’cause that line put a stamp on my career, like I look at people looking at me like [Jay] is just taking care of me and I’m just chilling and I’m not working. As you see, I’m here.”
A quick perusal of the Hip-Hop Wired archives will back up Bleek’s claim that he never stopped releasing music but there is also a logical explanation on why it never made it past local radio shows or rap websites.
“Put it like this: If I’m hollering at a DJ and I have a record I feel I need the look on, I’m like, ‘Fam, I need this look.’ You know what that DJ ‘gon say to me? ‘You good already,” Bleek explained without any bitterness in his tone. “What that mean? He don’t need to play my record because I got money in the bank?”
Nonetheless, Bleek maintains that Hov “is his guy” and that he never harbored any ill will towards the sentiment that backfired miserably. Watch the entire video of the interview below and check out living proof of Bleek’s current moves on the next page as he busts a quick freestyle for DJ Kay Slay.