Can Young Jeezy Revive His Career With Thug Motivation 103?
After countless album delays, a slew of potential singles, and more mixtapes than we ever would have expected from the Snow Man, Young Jeezy finally has a release date for TM103! TM103 is, of course, the loooooong-awaited fourth album from the Atlanta rapper—the one was supposed to drop almost a year ago but never did after Jizzle had trouble landing on the right single. Jeezy is planning on releasing TM103 to the world on July 26.
But by our estimates, he still hasn’t landed on the right single single yet—”Ballin,” featuring Lil Wayne is dope but hasn’t exactly made much noise of any of the Billboard charts—and we’re afraid that six years after the release of TM101, Jeezy’s career might have run its course. When you consider that he dropped his last album The Recession almost three years ago—a lifetime ago in rapper years—it becomes even harder to imagine Jeezy making the same sort of impact as he did in 2005 when he dropped TM101 with this new project. And to prove it, we came up with a list of five reasons why TM103 might not do as well as Jeezy hopes it will. As Jeezy himself would say, let’s get it!
1. Rick Ross and his Maybach Music Group are winning right now.
Last we heard, Jeezy and Ross were entangled in a rap beef that saw both of them take shots at the other on records. We’re not going to say either of them “won” but we are going to say that Ross managed to overcome that beef, launch his own label, and build his buzz up to deafening heights over the course of the last couple of years. Jeezy, on other hand, decided to take a break after that beef and hasn’t really recovered. So real or not, the perception is that Ross won that battle because he came out looking victorious, while Jeezy was stuck trying to find another way to get people to rally around him in preparation for TM103. And that’s bad for business, especially rap business.
2. There isn’t much buzz for Jeezy as he prepares to release TM103.
There’s nothing that’s happened over the last six months that gives us any reason to believe that now is the right time to drop TM103. “Ballin” got our attention—for a few days, at least—but Jeezy hasn’t dropped any mixtapes that have been particularly hot recently and he doesn’t have the momentum you’d like to see an artist have leading into a new album. Which leads us to our new point…
3. Jeezy’s whole career used to be built around his “movement,” which seems to have disappeared during his long hiatus.
Remember when TM101 dropped? Everyone was checking for it! People literally couldn’t wait to run to the store on July 26, 2005, grab TM101, and rip the packaging off of it. It was one of the truly great debuts of the last decade—and it was made possible by all of the faithful fans who were clamoring to hear Jeezy’s first album. Those fans still exist but they’re not running through walls for Jeezy like they used to. And unless TM103 is a straight classic, the “movement” behind Jeezy is probably never going to be as big as it once was.
4. Jeezy has almost no Web presence outside of dropping songs and mixtape to the rap blogs.
Here’s the one thing that we can say Jeezy is truly at fault for in the last three years. The guy has done next to nothing to connect with his fans through the Internet. Sure, he’s dropped a few songs and a couple of mixtapes at 1:03PM on random afternoons to try and capture their attention, but he hasn’t had a real presence on Twitter or Facebook. Yeah, we see he’s finally got a Twitter account but even that looks more like a promotional tool (it’s called OfficialTM103!) than something Jeezy plans on using to build connections with his fans. Jeezy’s Web presence has been one giant FAIL to us.
5. He picked a pretty bad time to finally release his new album.
Eminem and Royce Da 5’9″ have an album coming out this summer. Lil Wayne has an album coming out this summer. Ross and Co. have an album that’ll be hot well into the summer. None of that bodes well for Jeezy, who is going to have a tough time getting people super excited about his new album between now and the end of July. It’s one of the reasons we’re still wondering why he didn’t drop it last summer when “Lose My Mind” was popping. He could have saved himself a lot of time and trouble. Because while we’re not counting Jeezy out just yet, we are losing a bit of our thug motivation when it comes to TM103.