Hip-hop star Jazzy Jeff is glad he stepped back from the limelight, because
his art is more important than making money.
After shooting to fame as one half of JAZZY JEFF + THE FRESH PRINCE with
longtime pal Will Smith, Jeff made the break to concentrate on producing work
with artists like Jill Scott and to create his own critically-acclaimed album
And he insists his change of direction was exactly what he wanted, because
he had to get out the cut-throat world of stardom.
He says, "The only way I was gonna do an album like that was if I had
creative freedom. It was too much like, 'Are you gonna get Will Smith on your
"What it made me feel was, 'You guys aren't really concerned about the
type of record I'm making. You just want me to be one of those stocks.' I
didn't feel comfortable doing it. I don't want anybody to think that I'm
anti-music or anti-radio,
I'm just pro-freedom.
"I don't criticise anybody who's done it the other way. I chose to do this
and it might not be the way for everybody.
"I was somebody who did what I loved and it became popular. Then I started
doing what I felt people wanted and made a bunch of money and thought, 'Wow, I
made a bunch of money - and I'm not happy.' What makes me happy is when I can
do what I