From a broke-down project in Shreveport, Louisiana to celebrity status, Famouz has truly been there and done that. Taking his “50 state hustler” mantra to new levels, Famouz played collegiate football for Rutgers University and is a former 4-year veteran NFL football player for the New York Giants (1999-2003) and also played for the Nashville Kats of the Arena Football League.
While there have been a host of former athletes turned entertainment entrepreneurs’, Famouz is different as he has been rapping since he was 12-years old and even opened up for E-40 at the young age of fifteen. Aware of the skepticism regarding athletes turned rappers, Famouz assertively laments “I am different from any other athlete that has ventured into the music industry. First of all, I was a walk on for the NY Giants. I wasn’t drafted and I had to prove myself to make the team every year, as every year I was cut and played my way back on the team. Secondly, I wasn’t making a lot of money and the money that I did make went into my passion which was music. The difference is that music is my passion and my football career just happened to come first. I had the talent to go pro, but music is something that pumps through my blood daily; it keeps me alive. To quiet those people who say that athletes can’t be good at more than one thing is what I intend to do. I’ve proven I can perform at the highest level and produce results in anything that I set my mind to; I’ve been doing it my whole life.”
Backed by the production of One Drop Scott, the multitude of musical styles, display the versatility and talent of the creative genius Famouz. “I was inspired by the Isley Brothers, Run DMC, Prince, UGK and Tupac and grew up listening to funk, rock, rap and R&B. All of that helped me to develop my own style of pushing the envelope and creating a musical ghetto gumbo of sorts. Yeah, musical ghetto gumbo” laughs Famouz.
Famouz’s debut album entitled, Ghetto Passport, explains the struggle, experiences and realness of the rapper, entrepreneur / hustler. “Push” (which was inspired by the “get knocked down, get right back up” mentality of NBA Star Dwyane Wade) revolves around the spirit of working hard to get what you want. Famouz also teamed up with Jon Bon Jovi to interpolate Bon Jovi’s classic “Bad Name” with a Hiphop twist and as Famouz explains, the collaboration came to life due to mutual interests “I first met Bon Jovi when I was with the Giants, then when I was in the Arena League, I played against the Philly Soul (the team Jon owns) and they were a huge rival of ours. Later on we presented the idea of collaborating to Jon and the rest is history.” Also, be on the lookout for the controversial “Trippin” featuring E-40, the hypnotic call and response number “Swervin” and “Wiggle” a club banger that will have all of the females running to the dance floor to shake their moneymaker (“front, back and middle”). A few of Famouz’s personal favorites from Ghetto Passport include “Heaven” because as Famouz states “we are living in very tragic times and it will speak to people” obviously “Bad Name” because “it’s fuc*ing Bon Jovi” and the remake of David Bowie’s “Fame” now re-entitled “Famouz” as it truly takes music to another level; and it took forever to clear and my man Huff Daddy got it done” .
Famouz’s vision was further solidified when he signed with World Jam Records, which is headed by David L. Huff aka Huff Daddy. Huff Daddy realized the talent and work ethic displayed by Famouz as he balanced his job and passion for music. Their collaboration brings more unbelievable music to the table.
The promotion for Ghetto Passport is well underway, as Famouz joined Los Angeles Lakers players Kobe Bryant, Luke Walton and Brian Cook in March 2007 to host a free to the public fiesta featuring music from Famouz and World Jam Records. In addition, a US club-tour is already being solidified and as Famouz comments, be ready for some A-List guest stars to appear on the road with him “I have a lot of friends that still play football. They know that I’ve been working on this music stuff for along time. I’m not going to mention names right now, but come on, I was a former Giant. But aside from those surprise guests, in the long run, my music will definitely speak for itself.”
So, get ready to sit back, relax and enjoy the ride as Famouz’s debut, Ghetto Passport, gears up to hit the streets and clubs on September 25th, 2007.
Tracklisting and credits for Famouz’s Ghetto Passport:
1.) Take Off
2.) Ghetto Passport
3.) Gettin’ It
5.) Trippin’ f/ E-40 & Rankin Scroo’
7.) Bad Name f/ Jon Bon Jovi
11.) Thug Taboo
12.) Voice Mail 1
14.) Twist Twist f/UGK’s Bun B & Billy Cook
16.) In Too Deep
17.) Crunch Time
18.) Nothing Can Stop Me
19.) Neighborhood Star f/ 5 Ent