Big on Japan

Now that he's fled eastward, NYC hip-hop won't have B-Money to kick around anymore

He contrasts the genre's rising popularity in Japan with falling U.S. rap sales, and bemoans the American trend toward producing blockbuster albums on the cheap by employing no-name beat-makers. (Ironically, this is how Hughes got his start—he says G-Unit is a notorious practitioner of this technique.) "I'm not trying to say one country is better than the other, and I know a lot of my people are going to complain when this article comes out," Hughes concludes. "I love my people, but the thing about it is, hip-hop is kind of overflowing right now. There's a new producer popping up every day. The U.S. is good for making you into an icon, but no star in America lasts forever."

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