Our chat with Method Man and Redman at the Def Jam offices on the occasion of Blackout 2, their second collaborative album (out today), is one of those interviews that’s better for its, er, spontaneity. Red was more engrossed in his Chinese takeout and magazines than in any of our questions, and Meth was generally uninterested. At the time, we chalked it up to fatigue, or perhaps the aromatic THC-imbued product he was toting, but later we realized it probably had to do with a feud that had broken out over a fellow emcee taking exception to Meth’s placement in Vibe’s ranking of the best rappers alive (Red mentions it at one point).
In the ten years since Blackout!, what have you learned about dealing with labels?
Redman: You know what? I tell you what. I’m my own label. I know Def Jam is the machine that turns it and gets it out, but man, nowadays, it’s about you being your own label and selling yourself. You can’t wait for no label to promote you and shit, man. Especially when some labels ain’t doing they job, man. [To himself] What kind of spring rolls is this?
Was there a moment you both knew you’d work together for a long time?
R: (flipping through magazine) 50 Cent got a body spray? Nice. That nigga aint’ playing. Um. You know what, as for me, the moment just clicked in with me when we bumped into each other. When you run into another dude that’s on your wavelength and shit and you aint’ got to talk too much about the situation, where you can just look at each other? That did it for me. And then the music was going to be a breeze.
Do you think there’s a lack of humor in hip-hop? You guys have always been pretty loose on records.
Method Man: That’s what separates us from the pack. Cause it’s still fun for us.
R: (To Meth) You getting any more tats? You gonna get tatted up or you gonna get tatted up? I’m thinking of just getting tatted up.
M: I’m getting my arms done. And the rest of my back.
R: Me too. I think I’m just gonna go ahead and do it before I get any older. You know you gotta do it before you got older.
We have some silly weed questions, if that’s okay.
M: You ain’t gonna get me to talk about no weed. I ain’t got nothing to say about no weed. I’m an active member of my community; I’ll do it on records cause half the teachers and coaches don’t listen to records anyways. But they do read interviews. You wanna answer weed questions?
R: What’s it about? I can’t be answering too much shit, I gotta go to court. I forgot. For real, that shit is real talk. I gotta go to court for some bullshit. I’ll answer some.
Uh, okay. What’s the perfect weed-smoking scenario?
R: If I could set the scene perfectly for smoking weed — it’d be with a nice beautiful chick with an ass and some pretty feet. And she blow, too.
Who’d you smoke with if you could smoke with anyone?
R: If I could smoke with Cheech & Chong …
M: Cheech don’t smoke no more.
R: If they smoked I would love to smoke with them.
M: Willie Nelson seems like he’d be fun.
R: I would love to smoke with …
M: Woody Harrelson!
R: Yeah, Woody Harrelson
While we’re sort of on the subject, can you reveal any plot elements of How High 2?
M: There’s not going to be a How High 2. If we can’t improve on the original, there’s no reason to do a second one. But we are gonna do another movie together, we’re just not gonna call it How High 2. It’s too early to talk about.
R: What magazine is that they had the best rapper thing in?
R: This one?
M: I don’t know if it was that one. It was online.
R: Okay go ahead, I’m sorry about that.
Will it be ten years before Blackout 3?
R: Oh, oh, oh, oh, stop that.
M: We’ll see how this album does, honestly. And if there’s a demand, we’ll do it.
R: Shit, I’ma tell you — we need to just do it anyways. Because we need to get that bread. I need that bread. Plus we need to keep it going — these windows in rap are not as open as they were in the nineties. You gonna hear another Blackout!, who knows when, but it’s coming. (To assistant) Yo, Ev, can you order me some more spring rolls? How many come in a pack? I need like four of them.