I’ll admit when we rolled up to the photo shoot for the album cover, I might’ve partaken a bit too much on the way over.
But, that’s just ‘cause I got excited an’ all. I’d finally made it, the labels had picked me and I was gonna be the next big thing.
“Playa’ has arrived! Where the ladies at!” I shouted as I walked into the warehouse-sized photo stage. A semi-circular green screen hung from floor to ceiling.
“Shot them earlier. Don’t need all of you here at once.” Said the photographer, fiddling with the buttons on his camera.
“But the Bentley stretch limousine, that’s here right?” I asked, my mellow suddenly fading.
“Did that, too. We’ll put it all together later in Photoshop. Stand on the X over there, please.” He pointed at a duct tape cross near the green screen.
“That seems kinda, ya know, dishonest.”
A stage hand walked over and gave me a fan of hundred dollars bills. They were fake, only printed on one side, and taped together to hold their fan.
“Welcome to the rap game!” smirked the photographer. “Now let’s get to it, got three more shoots just like this today.”
I’ve got a friend that’s a local rapper, been working at it for years and years. He once told me how he hated all that stereotypical crap they put on the covers of start rap records. Girls, cars, money, jewelry, explosions, all of it faked with a computer. Catch was, people didn’t buy your record if you didn’t have that stuff on it. It was the catch-22 of underground rap.