The Roundtable Interview w/Kim Osorio

Yet another throwback. Here’s the Roundtable interview.

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Straight From the Source…Another excerpt

I have been asked to publish more excerpts from the book, so here it is… I just put out another release on the wire today so here’s a little taste of a part of the politics that went on behind the scenes. Thanks to everyone who has reached out on myspace and facebook to say how the book has affected them personally. I am currently working on the proposal for the next project which I’m not spilling the beans on just yet.

From pages 172 -173 (the back story to this)


If you ask me, though, we were doing pretty good for a magazine that was blacklisted from the label that controlled most of the genre’s artists. The drama between the Source and Interscope was dying down a little, and we were tapping into the South to help beef up our content. 

I got another call to Dave’s office one night to revisit the conversation that we had left off about the exposes that Ray had instructed us to do. Ray was addicted to them now, and it was probably because they had injected me with so much evil that I was doing a good job of executing Ray’s stories the way he liked. But this time, given the latest victim he wanted to attack, I knew it would be a problem. 

“We’re putting 50 Cent on the cover,” he said as soon as I walked through the door.

“We are?” I was confused because we had been planning a Ludacris cover that month. I knew 50 wasn’t going to grant us an interview, so I automatically figured this was going to be one of Ray’s specialties. But because I was the one who really knew 50, I felt as though anything that was printed in the magazine would be assumed by him as coming from me. Knowing the information that 50 had on me, I didn’t want to keep the war between us going because he had a bigger platform than I did, and I couldn’t risk losing. 

“We need to explain just how fucked-up what he is doing to rap music is.” Ray was huffing and puffing as he talked. He was clearly aggravated with 50’s success, criticizing 50’s influence on hip-hop….He had appeared on the cover of our competitor XXL, and that issue was the first ever to outsell the Source. He had taken a stance against the Source because of his loyalty to Eminem. He was on the other side of the fence, and I was forced to pick sides.

Separated At Birth: Gargamel & Benzino

here comes the bad guy…

From that moment on, I likened Ray and Dave to Gargamel and Azriel of the Smurfs cartoon. When Gargamel was around the Smurfs would run for cover and try to avoid him at all costs to save themselves from being swallowed whole. Azriel was Gargamel’s pet cat, who performed some of Gargamel’s evil duties. When Azriel disobeyed Gargamel though, he was punished. Ray was a real-life version of Gargamel and we were the Smurfs. Dave was now viewed as the lowest man on the totem pole. He was Azriel. At least the Smurfs could be happy when they were at home with no sight of Gargamel, but Azriel was always with Gargamel. That was his home.

From Straight From The Source… p. 153

More From Straight From The Source (MagaZINO…ooops did i say that?)

from pages 147 – 149…

Here’s another excerpt…

The Source was a hip-hop magazine, but somewhere along the way Ray decided the the Source was going to change its tune. It was going to be more of a men’s lifestyle magazine. Men in jail and involved in street activities. It was part of the reason wy he became so infatuated with F.E.D.S. magazine and hired Antoine–who was not making my job any easier. I had to come to work every day and deal with him after our incident. Fortunately for me, he barely came to work. When he did, however, I pretended as if his being there didn’t bother me anymore.

At one point, Ray was inspired to launch a completely new magazine. Originally to be called Source Style, it almost made its way onto newsstands. Meetings were conducted, stories were assigned, and a staff was assembled. Everyone was extremely excited about it until all of a sudden Dave called us into his office to inform us that the title for this spin-off had changed. It would now be ZNO magazine. For the rest of our days at the Source, we would refer to it as MagaZINO. Luckily, MagaZINO was never released because of budget concerns. But it didn’t matter, because the Source itself was slowly making its transition into MagaZINO anyway.

Straight From the Source…

The book excerpts will go up now. Book comes out this Tuesday, Sept. 9. Here’s another preview…

Excerpt from pages 14-15…

By the year 2000, the hip-hop industry was comparable to a male football locker room. Most of the top executives were men, the majority of hip-hop artists were male, as were almost all of the producers, video directors, engineers and DJs. That basically left video model or personal assistant as the most likely career option for a woman. But as a female, if you were successful, and rose to the top of the corporate ladder, your reputation became that much more vulnerable. If you looked halfway decent, then the misconception was that you slept your way to the top. On the contrary, if you were not easy on the eyes, then you must either have been gay or related to someone. As a woman, I knew it would be hard to beat the odds. But because I had put so much time in, I wasn’t about to let the odds come between me and what I wanted.
But a woman doesn’t only have her resume to worry about, she’s also got her reputation, and when it comes to a woman’s reputation in the business of hip-hop, it’s almost customary to define her by the men she’s been linked to. Pick up any hip-hop magazine and compare the stories done on women to those done on men. I guarantee you’ll find out more about he woman’s past sex life than you will about the man’s. That code doesn’t just apply to celebrities, it’s the same behind the scenes as well. For me, it was no different. The more successful I became in the industry, the harder it became to keep people out of my personal business.
My days and nights revolved around the magazine and around hip-hop, and my social network was composed of people who were just as obsessed with money, power and hip-hop as I was. Therefore, the majority of the men that I met along the way had some sort of function in the music industry. But in this particular sect of the industry, known to us as the hip-hop culture, the usual double standard applied to women is administered in much bigger doses. Once Snoop said “Bitches Ain’t Shit,” it was a wrap for us.

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