Harlem. 140th and Lenox. Dipset. 40 Cal. This rapper, who hit the streets hard with the mixtape heavyhitter, Trigger Happy, has followed up with Broken Safety and is on the re-up with a few more projects serving as a street savvy recipe for his continuation with the Dipset â€œmovement.â€
With the recent buzz circulating after his run-in with fellow Harlemite Loon, SOHH NYC caught up with Cal. to get his side of what went down in the Harlem barbershop, the situation with â€œFight Klubâ€ competitor Sam Scarfo, Young Jeezy snatching â€œSurvivor,â€ Mase being â€œwashed up,â€ and the â€œchanging facesâ€ of Harlem.
And contrary to most peoples' belief, his alias doesn't stem from the .40 pistol.
SOHH: You're from the "Danger Zone," right? Lenox Ave? So, I just wanted to get your opinion on what's been going on with the whole... them kicking people out of their apartments and jacking up the rent. I mean, you see what's going on in Harlem right? It's not a good look. How do you feel about that?
40: I mean, it's terrible. You already know like, a lot of people been living in their same apartment, same block, with they families for years, nahmean. And a lot of people got a lot of history and you know. What they doing now is the landlords is buying people out of their apartments for a few thousand dollars and all that. And what they're doing is moving the wealthy families in and charging, upping the rent about another thousand.
SOHH: Yeah, I'm not feelin' that too much. So let's talk about the album. You just recently dropped Broken Safety. Talk a little about that.
40: Aight...Broken Safety, first of all, it's more like a mixtape. I got a mixtape deal with Cleopatra/X-ray Records. It was like, Broken Safety started out as a mixtapeâ€"I was gonna put out like a regular Dipset mixtape. But a lot of people got wind of it and heard it before I dropped it, and they had bigger plans for it so thatâ€™s when the deal came into play. Right now, we droppinâ€™ it right now lettinâ€™ people know how I get down. Put it in stores, and we gonna see how it do.
SOHH: So itâ€™s not really a full-length LP?
40: Nah, it's just like an album. All our mixtapes be like albums anyway. It's just in mixtape format. I got different types of songs. I got a slow joint, I got a fast down south type of joint, I got a party joint, I got an old school type of joint. I got a couple hard joints. I try to get every, all type of areas.
SOHH: So youâ€™re not gonna come out with an album like maybe a while from now, maybe go all out do a video with it and everything or is it strictly gonna be mixtapes?
40: Well ,I got plans like, before this I dropped Trigger Happy, and before that it was 40 to Life which started out to be the best of me. And it was more like, people that didnâ€™t notice me that didnâ€™t really know me you know I had to give the benefit of the doubt. It was more like a mixtape. So I let them surface around the â€˜hood and then I dropped Broken Safety that marks almost like a hundred songs I dropped like this year. So Iâ€™ma let all that air out and let the DJs they do they mixtapes off of that. I stay hittinâ€™ every other mixtape with new music so you knowâ€¦
SOHH: And I mean, the album cover was hot. Whoâ€™s idea was that? â€˜Cause it was really representing with the 40th and Lenox in the background and all that.
40: Yeah thatâ€™s the block and I told them, I need the block in the background when I drop this. Nahmean. Thatâ€™s how I got my name, 40 Cal. Calvin from 40th.
SOHH: Oh ok. Now I noticed there werenâ€™t a lot of Dipset appearances... I mean there were a few, but not the people everyone would expect like Camâ€™ron or Jim Jones. I saw J.R, Freakey Zeaky, and somebody else too. But by not having so many collabo regulars were you just trying to do something different?
40: Yeah, for two reasons. I wanted to show people I could stand alone. Because lot of people know me from the features with Cam and Jim and everybody. I wanted to show more that I could stand alone, just me, and at the same time, I had did this like a year and a half ago. So at that point it was kinda hard to get the features I wanted anyway. So I just wanted to keep it like that. I got another one coming, you know, an album, album that Iâ€™ll have the regular Dipset features.
SOHH: So you do have a real album thatâ€™s coming out soon?
40: Yeah, I do. No doubt. I got a DVD coming out too, itâ€™s called Broken Safety DVD. It has my â€œFight Klubâ€ battles on there, exclusive battles, interviews and some videos.
SOHH: And that leads me to my next question with the â€œFight Klubâ€ battle with Sam Scarfo. From what I understand you won the first battle and he won the second. After that, if Iâ€™m not mistaken, he got a little big headed with the braggingâ€¦ So is this where the dis track â€œSam Scaredâ€ came from?
40: Yeahâ€¦ yeah. Basically, the way it started was, I meanâ€¦ I donâ€™tâ€¦ if somebody was to beat me in a battle, that doesnâ€™t make them my enemy or anything. Itâ€™s a battle, itâ€™s a competitive sport. Like howâ€¦basketball or football. Itâ€™s just the fact that he got on the DVD and he was talking shit about it and making itâ€¦ and defaming my name to make him look better. So you know, I was gonna get at him. I address all issues. But like I said this shit was like a year and half ago so it was kinda outdated. I was supposed to been dropped it, but he never really dropped nothing or said nothing I heard to make me wanna drop that but the beat, the track was so fire they was like â€˜keep it on the album.â€™ Know what Iâ€™m sayin.â€™
SOHH: Now, a couple of weeks ago, and I heard this story in so many different ways. But from what I understand you got into a fight with Loon at a Harlem barbershop. Like, everyoneâ€™s been telling the story the way they heard it. So do you wanna tell your side of the story?
40: Yeah, wellâ€¦ I donâ€™t know how they heard it.
SOHH: Yeah they were just saying thatâ€¦ people just twist things up and tell it however they wanna tell it so Iâ€™m really not sure of how credible any of it is. They were just saying basically that you got in a fight with him and someone had a shovel. They were saying you had a shovel and some said he had a shovelâ€¦and, I donno. So you just wanna clear the air a little bit?
40: Aight. What happened was we was in the barbershop, and me and him have the same barber. Basically, he tried to sneak me while I was in the chair. And my back was turned and he came behind and tried to hit me. He wasnâ€™t successful, I got up out of the chair, he swung again, I blocked it, went pushed him in the chair, snuffed him, he ranâ€¦no he picked up a shovel after that. He had a shovel after he umâ€¦ he got up. I told him put the shovel down. He ran outside, jumped in his car and I finished getting my line, my hair cut.
SOHH: And that was it? So I mean, it just ended that quick? He just jumped in the car and leftâ€¦
40: I mean, I just gave you a quick formation. I mean um, like after I pushed him in the chair and snuffed him, he grabbed me and the barber broke it up. And was like â€˜come outside.â€™ He grabbed the shovel, went outside, dropped the shovel and ran. Or passed the shovel off and ran. Jumped into some like, Ford Focus. And I finished getting my hair cut.
SOHH: Thatâ€™s crazy. So I mean, where did this come from? I mean, I heard he was going at Dipset, that he was just running his mouth. I mean, where did it start?
40: Somethinâ€™ aboutâ€¦we was arguing on the radio so he said somethinâ€™ about I was on a dis track, and was talking about him. The history go back further than that â€˜cause we knew each other for a long time. Before Dipset you know, he used to be under me. The dudeâ€™s like older than me. So I put him under my wing, taught him a lot of shit. I donâ€™t â€¦ he got the Bad Boy deal, I had got locked up for a like little while, I had did this short, short bid. Came back, he wasnâ€™t putting nobody on. Wasnâ€™t trying to put nobody on. I fucked with Cam, got on with Cam, and he got on the radio and said on the line that he ainâ€™t likeâ€¦ I heard he was mad, came around my block, and was poppinâ€™ shit. I wasnâ€™t around. But when I seen him, approached him it wasnâ€™t none of that. It was just like, he was just coppinâ€™ pleas about how Puffâ€™s doing him dirty and shit with a song he wrote. But, I mean, itâ€™s a long storyâ€¦
SOHH: Right. Well do you feel confident with the album? Would you have done anything differently?
40: Nah. Not really. Iâ€™m notâ€¦ I wouldnâ€™t do nothing different. Iâ€™m real comfortable with the album. I put a lot of work in them tracks. A lot of shit like, to me that was like a masterpiece. A lot of tracks got leaked â€˜cause itâ€™s only for so long that you can hold on to something so fire. But you know, for instance, like the history of the song â€œSurvivorâ€ with Akon. A lot of people donâ€™t know I had the original track before Jeezy. At the time I had just met Akon. He had did another song for me called â€œOutlawâ€œ that I never put on the album. But a lot of people donâ€™t know. He had did that track. Thatâ€™s how he was doing. He was sellinâ€™ beats and the hooks at the same time. Long story short I had did that track and I ainâ€™t really release it but I ainâ€™t get good clearance with Akon. Long story short you know, Jeezy got that Jeezy paper [laughs]. All I did wasâ€¦you could see the hook is slightly different from the other shit. The only thing thatâ€™s the same is the â€˜keep on movin'â€¦â€™ I told my boy Reck, thatâ€™s my producer, to switch the beat andâ€¦ it came out good like that.
SOHH: So you donâ€™t feel a certain type of way about Jeezy taking it over?
40: Nah itâ€™s all business man. I mean, he ainâ€™t know. He ainâ€™t know I wanted it. I would do the same thing if I was him.
SOHH: Now Mase is from Harlem. A lot of people say heâ€™s washed up. Just with the way of him bouncing back and forth between preaching and rapping or whatever it is heâ€™s doing... I don't know. He donâ€™t even know himself. I mean, do you feel like heâ€™s misrepresenting Harlem?
40: Well um, Maseâ€¦ I donâ€™t know man. Yeahâ€¦I agree. I think he is washed up. I donâ€™t know what kind of fans he has. I mean, he might haveâ€¦ suburb fans. Like, urban friends, I donâ€™t see none of thoseâ€¦like honestly, ainâ€™t nobody in the â€˜hood talking about Mase. But who knows. He couldâ€"50 [Cent] do his hook, come out with a hot beat, anything is possible. I donâ€™t know man. I ainâ€™t with that man. Dudeâ€¦ dude Mase, I donâ€™t know about him, man. A couple of my friends be with the G-Unit entourage and I be hearing the stories about Mase. I donnoâ€¦that dude need to wash it up, man.
SOHH: Well is there anything else that you wanted to address that we havenâ€™t touched on?
40: I mean you already know man. Broken Safety is out. Cop that. Broken Safety DVD coming up next, battles after that. Got a new mixtape coming out. Iâ€™ma drop it soon itâ€™s gonna be hot. Iâ€™m droppinâ€™ â€˜em like mini albums nahmean. I might call it â€œDonâ€™t Beat Me in My Head Volume Oneâ€ [laughs] nahâ€¦ or um, â€œThe Koofey List.â€ And we gonna get it in like that and address all issuesâ€¦you already know. Dipset all day.