"Now, what y'all wanna do? Wanna be ballers? Shot-callers? Brawlers?" You don't have to be a fan of hip hop to know where those lyrics are pulled from. "It's All About the Benjamins" dropped way back when in 1997, but it's still a relevant hip hop, party jam. The Deric "D-Dot" Angelettie-produced classic had multiple versions that featured Diddy, Notorious B.I.G., Jadakiss, Sheek Louch, and Lil Kim. Diddy's bars are some of the most memorable from "It's All About the Benjamins," and Jadakiss talked about penning Puff Daddy's lines during a recent visit with People's Party with Talib Kweli.
According to Jadakiss, he was just minding his business, spittin' a few bars when Diddy overheard him. "I already had that rhyme," the rapper said of Diddy's verse. "He heard it and was like, 'Nah, that's me. Let me get that rhyme right there. He took that and put that on 'Benjamins.' Me and [Sheek Louch] didn't like the 'Benjamins.' He almost forced us to record the verses that we have on there. We didn't really understand what that beat...it [didn't] grasp us at the time. We wasn't eager to just record it."
Yet, Diddy had a vision and knew it would be a hit. "That's what makes Diddy Diddy," Jadakiss added. "That really was like, our first commercial and 'hood hit that catapulted us besides the mixtape stuff that we was doing." Diddy's final "All About the Benjamins" verse wasn't how it was initially penned, because Jadakiss also revealed that the rap mogul "did about four versions of it."
Check out what else Jadakiss had to say below, including bits about Mase writing for Kanye and how he felt about being mentioned in Yeezy's 2005 hit "Touch the Sky."