Interview: Busta Rhymes

2011-05-03 16:17
US rap superstar Busta Rhymes can't seem to get enough of South Africa and the African continent.

The musician jetted into Johannesburg on Friday for the launch show of the new season of Big Brother Amplified.

He performed two of his hit songs on stage as the new batch of Big Brother contestants entered the house for 91 days on Sunday.

The motherland

Speaking at a media press conference in Johannesburg, Rhymes said he “felt great to be back in the motherland”.

“I go where I am welcomed and it's always great to come back to Africa where people appreciate my music and talent. I haven't yet had a bad experience in Africa, so I'll always come back and visit,” said the hip hop superstar.

“I've been to Angola, Lagos, Port Elizabeth, Durban, Johannesburg and I can't even remember where else in Africa I've been but the support I get from my fans here is incredible.”

Rhymes admitted he'd he hadn't watched much of Big Brother prior to his recent visit to SA and said he would never enter Big Brother as a contestant.

“I only recently started watching the show and I think it's a great concept. Personally, I would never stay in a house for 3 months in order to win $200 000 but for the contestants, it's a great deal.”


“If I was in the house, I wouldn't want to be in a house with a bunch of dudes. There would be a lot of conflict and at some point I would want to break free from the confined spaces. I'd prefer to stay in a house with women only,” said Rhymes.

Who would be his ideal Big Brother housemates? “You can put me in a house with women such as Halle Berry, Angelina Jolie, Angela Bassett, Salma Hayek and Jennifer Lopez and then I could live in the house for five years – straight!"

Collaborations and Chris Brown

Having collaborated with stars such as P Diddy, Pharrell Williams, Janet Jackson, Lil Wayne and more recently Chris Brown, Rhymes referred to music collaborations as “artists coming together to share their talents”.

“I enjoy collaborations because no matter where I travel in the world, music brings people together and to be a part of that by using my talent, it's one of the reasons why I am in this business. Recently I worked with Chris Brown and I think it's a killer track. I've being asked whether me collaborating with him is backing up how he is a person and the answer is NO. No matter who the person is, I enjoy making good records that feels good to put out to my fans.”

The song Rhymes is referring to,"Look at me Now", he regards as "true hit in 2011". "I believe Chris and I made one of the most powerful hits of the year and I'm grateful to have worked on that record."

When it comes to African music, Rhymes said he'll be looking into a collaboration with an African artist if he genuinely appreciated it.

“A lot of people expect me to just collaborate with them and I'd love to one day work with an artist from Africa. I've heard some great music here and I would love to make that happen – but only when the collaboration feels right and it's something both artists would appreciate working on together,” he emphasised.

Home boy

When he's not on stage or touring around the world, Rhymes said he's a “family man” but refused to divulge too much about his personal life.

“I have beautiful children and my mother is still the head of the household. My eldest son just turned 18 recently and soon he'll be off to college. My family and I maintain a great deal of normalcy at home,” he explained.

Africa, the seed

Referring to Africa as “the richest part of the planet”, Rhymes said he's happy to come “home” any time he can.

“Africa is pretty much the seed and fruit of mankind. Back home in the US, we see all the images of what Africa's like but when you finally get to visit, it's not necessarily true of what those horror images are. The people and spirit here are amazing and I love coming back each time I perform here.”

Clayton Morar is a celebrity expert and autograph hunter. See his expolits at publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

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