LOS ANGELES (by Phyllis Pollack/ Def Press Public Relations) - The long-awaited arrival of the debut album, 'Talk Of The Town,' from Oakland rapper Habitt is now slated for release on May 17. His record label, the Los Angeles based Fat Daddy Records, headed by television and film actress Yvette Wilson and her husband Jerome
Harry, had originally anticipated a February release, until they decided at the last minute to switch distributors. Harry explains, 'We really felt it was the best decision for our label, even though it slowed down the process a bit.' He adds, 'The support for the album has been incredible. The response has been amazing.'
Much has happened since initially preparing for the original February date. One of those events, however, left all involved shattered, and that was when actor Lamont Bentley was suddenly killed in a car accident. Bentley was a friend of the label, as well as a close friend of Habitt's. Both Bentley and popular actor Ken L. had just recorded a skit with Habitt, which is on the album, and it is titled 'Shakin' It Up.' Habitt reports, 'It was such a shock to lose someone who is a friend like that.' He adds, 'I dedicated my album to Lamont. He was a true friend, and we all miss him a great deal.'
The Habitt van is currently making its way across the country, and is slated to hit 29 states across the country, and it gets reaction wherever it goes. Scheduled arrival dates for this next week include Oakland, Sacramento, San Francisco, Vallejo, Las Vegas and Seattle. 'Ride with us,' says Habitt, inviting fans to check out his music and participate in the interactive promotional tour. 'I've got song on the album called 'Riders,' and that's what it's all about. Ride with us.'
Other guests on the album are label mate Black Diamond, who is scheduled for a release in 2006, the Luniz, and Knocturn'Al, who Harry used to manage. There is one more very special guest on the album, and that is Persian vocalist Aku G. Fort, who appears on the track 'Hypnotize.' Her vocals are sung in Persian, as Mid East meets West Coast hiphop.
Habitt says his life has really turned around because of the album. At times, things were not so easy, he says. 'I was running around in the streets when I was seventeen and got shot. It must have been meant to happen in the grand scheme of things, but I was not meant to go at that time. Somebody ran up to the car I was in and shot it all up. I was in the passenger seat in front. I just prayed that I wouldn't get hit. It was shot in my stomach area and in my thigh, so it was very serious, and I almost died. Somehow though, like a miracle, the bullet missed all my organs.
It was right below my heart.' He adds, 'I wanted to change the situation, and did everything I could to turn my life around.'
Regret is expressed in his song 'Lesson,' while 'Strictly Game' is about using those lessons for good benefit. Habitt explains, 'Everything you do is entirely about your game, and if you're doing a good job at whatever it is you're doing. But without game, you can't have anything in life.' Early critical response has also given a nod to tracks like 'N From The O' and the indelible 'Cross Me Border.' Habitt says that one of his personal favorites on the album is 'Street Life,' which he notes is an autobiographical portrait.
The current single 'Pick It Up' has received great reaction from record pools across the country, and as one DJ aptly noted, 'That's it for the album, too. Pick it up, because it's well worth it."