“Mike Jones”

14 years ago view-show 591,228

By Kevin L. Clark

 

      Everyone wants the American dream. You have people from foreign lands still past the remnants of Ellis Island searching for “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” For Mike Jones, his dreams were realized with the platinum major label debut, “Who Is Mike Jones?” With everyone knowing who the Houston, Texas rapper is, Jones is prepping his second release, “The American Dream.”

 

      The promotional genius, who cites his grandmother as continued inspiration, hopes to motivate many to achieve their dreams. With appearance from Bobby Brown to former nemesis, Chamillionaire, the H-Town looks to be on the verge of another shot at the spotlight.

 

      Currently on a promo tour, Mike Jones called in to CrackSpace via his tour bus to let us know what’s going with his album, how the late, great, Frank White inspired him and explains why the grind never stops.

 

HHC: With an album called, “The American Dream” – what has been one dream that has realized since the success of your last album?

 

MJ: I would have to say that anything can come true if you believe in it. Before I got to where I’m at, a lot of people told me that I couldn’t do this. I had a lot of haters. I mean, it all comes with the territory, but my American dream was huge.

 

HHC: But what about the cars, jewels and all that?

 

MJ: I mean… that all comes with making a success out of yourself. I have the houses, the cars and the jewels. That’s nice and all, but I can help encourage others who want to live that same lifestyle. With this album, I’ll be able to tell others how to get it.

 

HHC: You promoted hard for your last album; gave out your number and all that. What are you doing to let people know about “The American Dream”…?

 

MJ: I’m on a tour bus. We’ve done three to four months of promotion, straight. You know… the number (281-330-8004) is still in effect. It’s right here by my hip. We have a movie this time around and it basically shows where Mike Jones came from. It shows where the name, the number, how it all started. I went from struggling and made it to the top. I made it exclusively for the fans, so they could get motivated to get up and capture their hopes and dreams.

 

HHC: With so many Houston rappers coming out with albums – did you guys have to negotiate release dates so there’d be no conflicts?

 

MJ: No, man, no conflict… we’re just coming out. It doesn’t matter just as long as we all get some shine and eat from our projects. Paul Wall and I had our dates on the same date, but I had to push mines up because the movie wasn’t done at the time.

 

HHC: What should the public expect with this album?

 

MJ: I want people to know that on this album I’m trying to give game and show people that you can live your dreams. You can do that if you work hard and grind harder. Look at me… I’m living proof. I’m here!

 

HHC: As a mainstream rapper, how can you change up or branch out from typical subject matter and do something different without alienating your fan base?

 

MJ: I’m not going to really change up, I’m still going to do what I do. I love money, jewelry and cars, it’s just that I have a message behind the music. There are a lot of people who want that and you can get those things if you want that. I had wanted the same stuff when I didn’t have anything at all. I wanted it so bad that I went out and got it, you can do that to. It just takes a lot of work. I want this album, my life to be represented as motivation for others to make something out of themselves.

 

HHC: With more money come more problems. What has been one negative aspect of being in the spotlight?

 

MJ: It would have to be how people just expect you to do certain stuff. They don’t expect me to be going into Wal-Mart or fly Southwestern. Why would I want to spend the millions that I worked hard to get?

 

HHC: But you’re a millionaire… so do the perks of success outweigh the negatives?

 

MJ: Yes, the perks are a lot easier. When you go out to eat, there’s a risk involved. You want to eat in peace, but you can’t.  You have the kids surrounding you who want an autograph or a picture! You want to be mad, but you can’t because they know, just like you do, you may not get a chance like this. So, because of the fans you have to sacrifice yourself, because they put you in the position where you at. It’s something that you got to get used to. It could be bad for a relationship and stressful for your family.

 

HHC: “Back then, they didn’t want me… now I’m hot, they all on me,” is akin to something that B.I.G. spit while he was here. What is one thing that you’ve learned from the deaths of Biggie and 2Pac?

 

MJ: Biggie was what I am now. He was a motivator. That song, “Juicy,” was my life. He dropped out of school and I dropped out of high school. I understood his song. I went through all that stuff. The stereotypes that people label on young Black kids are evident in the song. I can rap that same rap and it’d fit me perfectly. He could’ve made a song about balling and he does, but he wanted to let you know that there’s another side to the story. That’s how I am. People used to diss me, but I’m still here and now they changed their mind about me.

 

HHC: With the game being fickle – how does “The American Dream” keep you in the spotlight?

 

MJ: For one the market is going down because of bootlegging. If the label gives you $8 million for you to go platinum… you’re not going to see any money anyway. It’s hard these days. The people who get those big numbers are the ones who have those machines behind their music. I rather come out during the first/second quarter like I am and not spend too much money off of my budget and do the numbers. That’s what I did on my first major album. I made, personally for myself, about $5 to $6 million.

 

HHC: Since you’ve escaped the nightmare and are living the stuff of dreams – what is some advice that you’d give to anyone trying to pursue their own happiness?

 

MJ: If people tell you that can’t do it… don’t believe them. With success come problems. As long as you know that, you’ll be alright. That’s not just if you’re trying to be a rapper. That’s whether you want to be a doctor, model or whatever. Anything that makes money will make more problems. People think that you can get the fame and then you can just live life regularly, but you can’t! I missed my niece’s birthday. I had paid for all of it, but I couldn’t be there… [sighs] I had to keep my name buzzing, so the money doesn’t stop coming in.

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