S1 E43 | 2 Eleven
Big Bank and DJ Scream return with another hot episode of “The Big Facts” podcast featuring special guest and West coast’s own 2Eleven. The Inglewood native sat down to discuss some of the things he’s been up to lately, his former affiliations with Jeezy and being signed to his CTE music label, career mistakes and the legacy of Nipsey Hussle.
The group got straight into the discussion when Bank posed 2Eleven the question of what he thought the difference was between the west coast and the south. “First off, the southern hospitality—that shit is true,” the “My Money” emcee began. “My experience, don’t get it fucked up, [a] nigga will rob you with a smile on [they face]. But, it’s just the southern hospitality. The Black excellence, Black money, Black businesses.”
2Eleven believes when it comes down to the ladies, the south just provides something you can’t get anywhere else. “They might hate it, but you know, the women out here, the Black women out here, they’re bosses,” he continued. “A lot of women on the other side, they gimmie gimmie or you’re tryna win, no disrespect. They outnumbered by the boss bitches.” Yet, the 36-year-old, whose real name is Rondey Gibson, believes your surroundings have a lot to do with that particular situation. “The dynamics and the geographics of the city and shit.”
The “On My Shit” rapper admitted that prior to the start of his music career, he was getting into activities perhaps he shouldn’t have been while living in Inglewood. “Sum it up man, I was just a big old gangbanger,” 2Eleven said. “Drug dealer, but not no big drug dealer.”
However 2Eleven said there were several factors that made him stand out from most people who ran the streets. “Not to toot my own horn or nothing, I just knew when to leave, I knew when to go home, you feel me? I scratched off everything on the check board” he said. The artist understood the assignment, but “never went for the extra credit to put me in jail.”
Roughly around 2006, after bouncing around across states, the rapper finally settled in Atlanta where he landed a record deal with Jeezy’s label Corporate Thugz Entertainment (CTE). “Honestly, I think I didn’t get signed off no rap shit,” the rapper explained. “I wasn’t hot. I wasn’t a rapper like that. I probably got signed off being a Blood nigga with a little bit of money and 50 niggas with me everywhere I go.”
Eventually, he fell in love with the art form, but subsequently resigned. The rapper said it was on some “gangsta shit.” When asked to clarify what he meant by resigned. The “Top Down” emcee claimed that during his first deal, “I ain’t get no money.” He continued, “I just got a chain, you know what I’m saying? But, I didn’t know the business. I signed that shit. They threw me a party at the Royal. I didn’t know shit about no business.”
The “Another Play” rapper said, ultimately, he took some time off to learn about the business side of the music industry, learned how to negotiate, and perfected his craft. Though he felt he was only getting these opportunities because of his image, he used it to his advantage when it came time for renegotiations. “So we renegotiated, threw me a little piece. I dissed like five niggas on the record and I thought I was signed,” the rapper quipped. “I had a record deal for like two months and niggas catted off on me… Left me in Atlanta with unsolved mystery beef and I went back home like man this shit crazy.”
Despite his bumpy journey, 2Eleven said there were many valuable lessons he learned, including staying consistent. “It was like consistency, that was my weak point,” the rapper admitted.
He continued: “First, it takes a little minute to make a project. Make the project, you got to figure out the strategy of dropping it and then if you’re not recording like that, you’re gonna wait three, four, five months and then be like damn, ‘Damn I’m falling off. I gotta make another one.’ Two, three, four, five months to make it, record it, another month to strategize it. Drop it. And now you’re a year behind—two, three, four rappers done took your spot and now gotta work double.”
For artists trying to avoid running the risk of “falling off,” 2Eleven advised, “Just stay rapping, stay dropping and stay ahead of the game.”
Elsewhere in the convo, he reflected on the death of Nipsey Hussle. As many fans may remember, the west coast rapper was shot and killed outside of his Marathon Clothing store in South Los Angeles on March 31, 2019. The 33-year old’s death shook the hip hop community.
“I was like I hope a homie ain’t do that shit cause this finna fuck the city up,” the “24 Summers” rapper said of finding out about Nipsey’s fatal shooting. “I was praying that a Blood didn’t do it. It’s a territorial thing. So, I think if that would’ve happened, it would have just been Bloods against Crips again.” Although they were from different neighborhoods, 2Eleven said Nipsey always showed him nothing but love and support.
If you like what you heard, be sure to stay tuned every week for new episodes of “Big Facts.” Also, don’t make sure to watch the latest show above!