Death Row East Opens Up-Nas Protege Signs On
Former Nas Associate Lake Signs With Suge Knight
By Houston Williams
Former Nas associate Lake has signed to Suge Knight’s Death Row Records subsidiary, Death Row East.
“I’m the flagship artist [of Death Row East],” Lakey the Kid said on DJ Kay Slay’s Hot 97 radio show today [Feb. 24]. “We doing this for the streets. Death Row is back. The streets is ready, the penitentiary is ready. The foundation of what we doing [starts with] the music.”
Lake was once affiliated with many of the artists out of the Queensbridge area, but said that many of the relationships weren’t fruitful to him.
“The dudes that I was with weren’t supporting me so my career was at a stalemate. A lot of dudes didn’t want to support me coming up,” he lamented without citing specific rappers. Lake has been associated with fellow Queensbridge rappers like Cormega, Mobb Deep and has lyrically berated former friend Nas.
Big Delson, the VP Death Row East, was also on the show and said that he and Lake, a Queens native, have many commonalities that extend far beyond mere music.
“Me and Lake, we been in it together, we did time together, I got love for him,” said Delson. “And I really believe in his ability. I’ve watched him grow as a person, as a person and as a man. And there is no way I could turn my back on his, because loyalty and integrity is everything to me. I don’t know how to be crooked. I only know how to be straight up – 6 o’ clock.”
Suge Knight told the listening audience that Lake’s street creditability was extremely important. “Everybody knows Lake is hot. It speaks for itself. It’s really important for me to sign somebody that can go back to their own neighborhood.”
Also, Knight weighed in on the changes in the music industry since his beginnings in the early 90s and alluded to some of his run-ins with the law.
“My whole thing is that, far as the music business, it used to be fun. Its time for me to deal with people that don’t tell on me and I don’t tell on them,” Knight said. “Don’t tell the police. Everybody did they time. One of the things that I am excited about the [Kay Slay] show is the show gives to the penitentiary”
Lake expressed that he felt a unique kinship with Suge Knight, deceased rapper Tupac and Death Row as an organization.
“To the people that don’t know, you gotta understand what this is – its Death Row East – but its Death Row. Death Row had the best,” Lakey said. “I couldn’t go no where else.”
At the show’s conclusion, Suge Knight also revealed was also attempting to contact and sign incarcerated rapper Shyne.