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Despite being the only artist of MMG -- besides latecomer Stalley -- without a radio single, Pill states that he was somewhat surprised to hear the whispers. "I'm not sure how they started actually," he tells The BoomBox. "I noticed it when people started f---ing with me on Twitter, but I don't know the source of it. I mean, it is what it is. It's mostly Twitter -- people that follow me or don't follow me that hate on me daily, and wanna start s---."
At Wale's Ambition Tour close in Atlanta on Fri., Dec. 9, Pill was nowhere to be found, contributing to the hearsay. "I had studio time that night that was already booked, but I wanted to check it out," he explains. "I just got off from texting Wale, congratulating him on his number one single. People just try to stir s--- up on their own accord sometimes and you know how that goes. People love controversy and I don't mind being the butt of the controversy, but I just pay it no mind, you know what I'm saying? I just keep doing what I'm doing, and I keep working."
The rumor comes just a few weeks after his show at New York venue S.O.B.'s, which received dismal reviews, including a particularly cringe-worthy writeup from the Village Voice. The rapper says he isn't sure why certain writers didn't get it, noting a number of industry insiders who came out to support including DJ Kay Slay and Angela Yee. "Yeah, I read it, but it was perceived wrong," he continues. "They were saying like, people will be on the bandwagon after that. Like by the time my [upcoming MMG-sponsored mixtape] comes out, a lot of people will be on the bandwagon by then. But I don't really pay attention to negativity like that. I entertain it every once in a while."
There's also the matter of how Pill has been embraced. It's generally felt that he's the least known member of the trio of rappers under Ross' tutelage, although they were all signed within days of each other. Wale, of course, brought most, if not all, of his fan base with him from his previous work as an Interscope artist. But Pill and Philly's Meek Mill were both relative unknowns before uniting with Ross. Since their signing in February, Meek has had a couple club bangers and Pill is still working towards defining who he is -- "poetic, storytelling, struggle-driven" -- for those unfamiliar with his work.
With his nose always to the grindstone, he remains unaffected by the wiles of the grapevine. Since the rumor popped up everywhere online, he's dropped a number of original songs and stuck to one of his stronger suits -- releasing clever freestyles over classic beats. On Monday (Dec. 12), he filmed the viral video for his 'If I Ruled the World' freestyle. It will be the first from the upcoming mixtape 'The Epidemic.'
Pill hopes to film another four or five visuals for his tape as MMG puts the finishing touches on 'Self Made Vol. 2.' "Everybody pretty much spread out right now, and we're sparsely working on it, but there's no set date for the release," he states. "Everybody's pretty much doing what they're doing and trying to grind it out with different tracks as we go along. We've all recorded tracks already that we've compiled to submit for the actual LP but you know, I can't even really say what percentage of it is done. I recorded a lot of tracks. Wale, Meek, Ross recorded a lot of tracks and we're all just waiting on that day when we all can just sit and go through it."
The rhymer, born Tyrone Rivers, says that he's still firmly planted as a member of MMG and the story that has the internet in a fervor is a complete falsehood. He also recognizes that the only way to prove he's still working is to work. "I just make sure that I do what I've been doing and that's just providing quality music, do my shows, do my visuals and provide content for the people and try to uplift them in some sort of way and give people some sort of motivation through music," Pill reveals. "As long as I continue to do Pill, I think I'll be OK."
Pill is readying his fifth mixtape, 'The Epidemic,' for release in early 2012.