He remembers the struggle, so he wants to help new talent.
There aren't many artists who are not only veterans in the rap game, but who are also considered icons, respected by their peers, and continuing to make music. The Bay Area's E-40 has been releasing albums for 30 years, the most recent of which was his 26-track, 26th studio album, Practice Makes Perfect. We live in a time where many veteran emcees struggle to keep up with the new generation of hip hop artists as the game, and the sounds, of rap changes, but E-40 decided to work with new blood instead of against them.
The 51-year-old hip hop mogul's latest effort was a feature-heavy project, many of whom were young artists. E-40 told Billboard that because he remembers the struggle of being an up-and-coming rapper, he supports the next generation as much as he can. "I’ve got a big heart and I believe in good karma," he said. "I can’t save the world. I can’t help you if you don’t want the help. I just try to play my position. There’s a special place in my heart for up-and-coming talent. They can also help me. I can be introduced to some other fan bases, too. But it’s mostly just how I am. If I like you, I like you. Let’s go, let’s get this money. There’s enough money out there for everybody."
E-40's name isn't always included in the "Top Rappers" lists, but that's something that's he's said he isn't bothered by. However, he definitely doesn't believe he's given the just due that he deserves. "I’m definitely underrated. By far. By far, far, far," he said, adding that he's motivated by being undervalued. "The game is goofy. They’re squares. If you ain’t from it, you might never comprehend me. If you’ve never been through what I’ve been through, if you ain’t had to adapt the way I’ve had to adapt, you may not feel me. If you woke, you gon’ love E-40. If you snoozin’, listening to mediocre rap, you trippin’. Get with a rapper that’s trying to teach you something, who is painting pictures with his lyrics. I come with so many styles and flows, I have a uniqueness. I just bring super dumbass slaps." Make sure to check out E-40's Practice Makes Paper here.