Contributed Photo Credit: Ahmad J
“Jui$e Leroy remixes Notorious B.I.G’s “Who Shot Ya” and directs his message at his peers in the Dallas Hip Hop music scene. Self proclaiming himself as the greatest rapper out of the DFW. He addresses artists that have bit off of his style that failed to pay homage. Jui$e Lee also discusses the Kendrick Lamar comparisons and how J. Cole acknowledged and showed love to his music video “Blues”. -Jui$e Leroy
By Roderick Pullum
This month marks the 25th anniversary of “Who Shot Ya?” by The Notorious B.I.G. The song was originally released February 25, 1995 as a B-Side to his hit single “Big Poppa.” Producer Nashiem Myrick created the instrumental which is defined by its boom bap style kick drum – hi hat cymbal combination along with the haunting keys sprinkled throughout. B.I.G.’s lyrics were venomous – his wordplay was intricate, and the release date in hindsight was ill-advised.
Remembered for both its quality and infamy the song helped escalate the rift between B.I.G. and Tupac Shakur who was serving time at Rikers Island. He survived being shot and robbed at Quad Studios in New York three months before the release of “Who Shot Ya?” Shakur believed it contained subliminal lyrics aimed at him, furthering his suspicion that B.I.G. along with other NYC hip hop and criminal luminaries he befriended were directly or indirectly involved. The rest is well documented and tragically both icons would be dead within 2 years.
“Who Shot Ya?” was part of the soundtrack that fueled East Coast rap music’s return to relevance after being dominated by their west coast counterparts since the late 1980’s. Countless rappers have utilized the beat for battles, freestyle sessions and remixes. Attempting to make your own version of “Who Shot Ya?” without bringing your best is essentially rap-music blasphemy. Biggie was 22 years-old when it came out and he couldn’t have known the impact this song would have for future generations of hip-hop fans and artists alike.
Rapper and Fort Worth native Juise Leroy was heavily influenced by The Notorious B.I.G. In 2019 Leroy found his brand of what he calls “Conscious Trap” grow to new levels of notoriety aided by his focus on providing visuals to his music. He capitalized on the popularity of his Trappy Chan mixtape by releasing a video for “Tempo” one of the most popular songs from that project. He also gained a good deal of traction with visuals for “Blues”, “Non-Religious” and his collaboration with Rakim Al-Jabbaar “Lunacy.”
Juise Leroy is ready to claim a spot among upper-echelon of a competitive Dallas-Fort Worth hip-hop talent pool. In January he released the single and video for “I Shot Ya” which uses the “Who Shot Ya?” instrumental. The gritty black and white video directed by noted film-maker Stack Moses was shot on location in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood where The Notorious B.I.G. grew up. We spoke with Juise Leroy about what inspired the song and video.
Directed By: Stack Moses | Juise Leroy “I Shot Ya”
ELC: The “Who Shot Ya?” instrumental is classic. Dropping verses over it essentially comes with a responsibility for the MC to bring their best. Tell me what inspired you to make this?
Leroy: The inspiration came from wanting to make a statement that there is no more humble pie. I know my capabilities and what I bring to the forefront. No subliminal messages or indirect shots I wanted the people to know who and what I’m coming for.
ELC: You mention a few names on this track. The part where you say “Yella Beezy; Mo3 or whoever” sounds like standard competitive hip-hop jabs but correct me if I’m wrong.
Leroy: You are correct. I’m taking jabs at notable names letting it be known whoever you put me up against, they pale in comparison lyrically. Not a diss but it is to set the record straight. They’re doing what they’re supposed to do and I commend them and others but I’m setting the stage to leave my imprint on the game on a larger scale.
ELC: Was the part where you say Fat Pimp, Raw and Jay motivated by something personal?
Leroy: It was more-so that I noticed that they wore the Japanese Hachimaki (headbands) after I rebranded myself as Jui$e Leroy. Different people brought it to my attention and I just spoke on it from a standpoint of me being the originator of that style in these parts. I spoke to Raw already, that’s my nigga so there isn’t any beef or anything. It’s truly more of a compliment that I see other people taking on that style than me seeing it as them biting or trying to take credit for it themselves. I rock with Fat Pimp too, a cool dude. I just have to stand on me and my brand knowing what this means for and to me.
ELC: Just to clarify, Raw refers to Raw Elementz correct?
ELC: Who exactly is Jay?
Leroy: J. Cash The King.
ELC: You killed it at Premier Live’s “The One” competition last year. Was that your first time performing “I Shot Ya”?
Leroy: Yes, the Premier Live show “The One” competition was my first time performing that. I had just wrote it, recorded it, and shot the video all the week prior out in New York with Stack Moses.
ELC: What are your Top 5 tracks by Biggie?
Leroy: It’s difficult to narrow it down to just five but if I had to it would be Who Shot Ya?, Warning, Ten Crack Commandments, Kick in the Door, and Juicy in no particular order.
ELC: You made the most out of 2019. Do you think it was your biggest year career wise?
Leroy: Yes, hands down 2019 was the most productive and biggest year I’ve had yet. I put plays in place from properly preparing myself. Got my paperwork right, made legit connections, put out quality content consistently and stayed diligent in my approach, following and trusting my gut. My song “Blues” is on rotation on DJ Smoke of Shade45 Radio station. My song “Winnin” is still being featured on multiple NBA, WNBA, and sports related outlets for highlight reels, NBA team DJ’s and more. Had multiple songs featured in films that have given me a broader reach. I signed a management deal with Legna Entertainment and I’ve been flying from coast to coast for meetings, sessions, videos and more. 2020 and beyond will definitely be bigger and better.
ELC: What’s on your 2020 Vision Board? Are there any shows or release dates coming up that you can share?
Leroy: On my vision board for 2020 is more placements via blogs, movie scores, and NBA 2K. I’ll be featured in a few short films displaying my acting abilities, collaborating with major producers and building my fanbase. I have multiple projects finished, just getting the release plans squared away. My first official single for this year will be “Ri Ri” and my project will be “No White Rice”. I have some joint projects that I’m working on with a few artists and each one with display my range and versatility.
ELC: Anything else you want to add?
Leroy: I’m taking a stand for true artistry and dope emcees that have something of substance to say. I’m making an impact not only from my music and style but my dynamic approach and philosophical delivery. I’m here to uplift and push the culture forward and show the word that Dallas has more to offer than what is being presented. Follow my progress on www.juiseleroy.com also
IG/Twitter/Facebook: @Juiseleroy. Stream my content on all music platforms from YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music and more. Peace, Love and Respect.
Contributed Photo Credit: Ahmad J