Steve Stoute Reveals Kobe Bryant Was Around Nas, Foxy Brown During Rap Career

Steve Stoute once signed Kobe Bryant to a record deal back in the day.

BYAron A.
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Kobe Bryant was a basketball legend, father, and husband but he wore many more titles. Among those was rapper. His career was short-lived with his debut album getting shelved by the label. As an MC, he worked with Brian McKnight and had Tyra Banks on his debut solo single. 

It was Steve Stoute that brought the NBA legend into the world of hip-hop. In a recent interview with The Breakfast Club, Steve Stoute sat down to discuss his relationship with Kobe Bryant which inevitably led to the music executive sharing some anecdotes. Stoute explained that Kobe has always been a fan of hip-hop, mainly because it's consistently been about fighting against the system.

Kobe was in New York City where he was training and Steve Stoute revealed that Kobe was hanging around some of the greats at that time, seemingly soaking in game about the rap industry.

"He stayed in New York. He spent a lot of time with Nas, with Foxy [Brown], like really trying to acclimate himself to what he was going to do as an artist. To learn," he said. "That's the thing that I got from him, is what when he decided to do something, he went so all in."

Stoute spoke on an incident when he was with Kobe in New York City. After going into a club, Kobe and another man got into an altercation but Stoute went outside to deal with it.

"The guy calls me to go outside. Boom, he got his hand on the reach," Stoute said. "Kobe comes outside. I'm like 'Go back inside.' He's like, 'I'm not going nowhere.' That's the type of guy he was."

Following news of Kobe's passing, Steve Stoute shared a heartfelt tribute where he shared other details on his relationship with Kobe including that Kobe stated at his house during the 1996 rookie season. Peep the full interview below.  

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About The Author
Aron A. is a features editor for HotNewHipHop. Beginning his tenure at HotNewHipHop in July 2017, he has comprehensively documented the biggest stories in the culture over the past few years. Throughout his time, Aron’s helped introduce a number of buzzing up-and-coming artists to our audience, identifying regional trends and highlighting hip-hop from across the globe. As a Canadian-based music journalist, he has also made a concerted effort to put spotlights on artists hailing from North of the border as part of Rise & Grind, the weekly interview series that he created and launched in 2021. Aron also broke a number of stories through his extensive interviews with beloved figures in the culture. These include industry vets (Quality Control co-founder Kevin "Coach K" Lee, Wayno Clark), definitive producers (DJ Paul, Hit-Boy, Zaytoven), cultural disruptors (Soulja Boy), lyrical heavyweights (Pusha T, Styles P, Danny Brown), cultural pioneers (Dapper Dan, Big Daddy Kane), and the next generation of stars (Lil Durk, Latto, Fivio Foreign, Denzel Curry). Aron also penned cover stories with the likes of Rick Ross, Central Cee, Moneybagg Yo, Vince Staples, and Bobby Shmurda.