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Well, I can't say I respect his reason for considering this. Age ain't nothing but a number...and saying you love terrible commercial rappers like Lil' Wayne, Drake, and Future shows a truly twisted look at the music game.


Andre 3000 To Retire Next Year? The 39-year-old rapper set to bow out after he turns 40

Justin Dwayne Joseph

Posted: 09/03/2014 10:34 AM EDT

Filed Under Andre 3000 Music News Antwan Patton Big Boi Outkast Big Boi


Andre 3000 is considering retiring from the rap game next year after he turns 40.

"I remember, at like 25, saying, 'I don't want to be a 40-year-old rapper,'" he told the New York Times. "I'm 39 now, and I'm still standing by that. I'm such a fan that I don't want to infiltrate it with old blood."

The Outkast star, born Andre Benjamin, also revealed that he recruits his teenage son Seven (his son with singer Erykah Badu), to critique his verses because he is no longer confident about what will resonate with young music listeners.

"I struggle with the verses. I don't sit around and write raps, I just don't. Now the only time I'm really inspired to write raps is if an artist that I enjoy invites me to their party. So if Future calls and says, 'Hey man, I want you to do this,' I don't want to let Future down. I don't want to let Lil Wayne or Drake down, because I love them ... My son, he's 16. Him and his buddies, they'll be in the car, and I'll say, 'Hey, what do you think about this verse?' That's my gauge at this point. I don't have the pulse. Part of art is knowing when not to put paint on. And when to change your medium."

Benjamin, who recently reunited with his Outkast bandmate Antwan "Big Boi" Patton for a series of shows this past summer, will most likely mark his retirement with a new album.

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Considering for ages Outkast as a duo promised new music, I'd be dissapointed if they dont do one more. Big Boi has put out two very good solo albums in the last few years. Im also annoyed at myself for not going to one of their festival shows this summer. My workmate is literally watching them live right now at Bestival on the Isle of Wight. I was just hoping for some proper tour nights and not on the festival circuit.

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i think andre 3000 will rap past 40, there's quite a bit of 40+ hip hop artists putting out music/touring still and a lot of them said they'd "retire" but they came back, there is no retirement in hip hop, and btw he has the right to like whoever he likes as long as he don't start sounding like them i could care less

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I feel like he'll definitely do cameos after 40, but I think it'll take inspiration to commit to full albums. He seems so far from music most of the time. If you've read recent interviews about the OutKast reunion, he was kinda reluctant to do it.

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...and to be honest Festival crowds aren't gonna get him buzzing to do more. They're not the hardcore fans rapping back to you. Mostly the Ms Jackson ad Hey Ya singalongers and not a lot else.

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It looks like he's had a change of heart. It's all good news, but he doesn't mention new OutKast music.



Andre 3000: “Just To Be Clear, There’s No Retirement”


Andre 3000 has done quite a few interviews lately. And, by quite a few, we mean 3, which is a lot for the classically introverted one-half of Outkast. After opening up for an emotional interview with The New York Times and sitting down with Ellen Degeneres, Andre 3000 finds himself on the cover of Billboard magazine, where he opens up about his solo career, Outkast, and his future in Hollywood.

It’s been a very hectic year for Andre, who has spent the majority of 2014 in a place he rarely finds himself, and is admittedly uncomfortable in: the forefront. He and his partner-in-rhyme, Big Boi, have performed at nearly every major music festival across the nation and the border, ranging from Coachella and Governor’s Ball to Drake‘s OVO Fest.

We haven’t been granted access to Andre’s full interview, but Billboard did provide a few excerpts which you can read below.

Solo Album
While there’s one in the works, he’s not rushing it: “I haven’t even started on [it],” says Benjamin. “I’ve got to find something I’m excited about.”

More Movies
“I do read scripts,” he says. “But I have to be excited about it to really fully throw myself into it. The older I get, I don’t know what my decisions will be. I may start just taking roles just to support myself, just kind of keep busy.”

He’s Turned Down $100,000 Guest Verses
A rare Andre 3000 guest verse, which goes for at least $100,000, isn’t a guaranteed thing: “[in some cases] I had to call them back and say, ‘I’m sorry, I couldn’t come up with nothing cool.’” We’d probably beg to differ.

“To be clear, there’s no retirement,” Benjamin says of his rap career. Which, obviously, is a relief.

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why can rock artists keep making albums and performing into their 70s.. but if its a rapper.. oh know he's past 40! it's a twisted and wrong view in my opinion. there should also be classic hip hop radio stations like classic rock.. not enough respect is shown to the past

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I think it's because Hip-Hop is a modern art form. I guess rock is too, but Hip-Hop is even more fresh. We're still figuring out where it goes and how it lasts. It's shelf date is pretty short for most artists in terms of commercial success and commercial success is unfortunately looked up on as over all success. It's look at as a young boy's game because the younger generation seem to be the only ones likely to get success...which is why we have no leaders on the charts. I feel that we are in a time where a handful of the legends keep pressing on and touring. I'm hoping it creates a new thinking.

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While a new solo album is in the works, it looks like there will be no more OutKast...at least for now...


Andre Benjamin on OutKast: 'That Ship Has Sailed'

The rapper and actor talks limitations in music and portraying Jimi Hendrix.

By Clay Cane
Posted: 10/03/2014 08:45 AM EDT


Andre Benjamin might be quiet on the music front, but the OutKast frontman is garnering rave reviews for his portrayal of the late, great Jimi Hendrix in the biopic All Is by My Side. The late guitar god changed the landscape of rock music, but his journey was cut short when he died at the age of 27. Written and directed by Oscar winner John Ridley, who penned the screenplay for 12 Years a Slave, the film examines the life of the “Purple Haze” singer before he became a star.

Here, Benjamin talks to BET.com about becoming Hendrix, the future of OutKast and fame in 2014.

How has playing Jimi Hendrix changed you?
Not much, to be honest. People have asked that question, "Has it given you anything?" I've learned a couple of more chords — that's about it. Really, it was just a great experience. I can't say I took a lot away from it. I can't say I took away some big, life-changing thing.

Jimi Hendrix is one of the first Black artists to be accused of not being Black enough — and even to this day, Hendrix isn't as embraced by the Black community. Why do you think there is a disconnect?
It's funny you say that...I have no idea. Even to this day, most Black people don't like distorted guitars. If it is a sweet tone, they can deal with that but something about the distortion that kind of throws Black people off a lot. Depending on who you are, some Black people...I love it, [but] the majority of Black people, it's kind of like a dissonant sound that does not work in some kind of way.

Jimi Hendrix appeared to be uncomfortable with fame. I get the sense you are, too.
Yeah, it's odd...I think it's a personality thing, too. I think some people are built for it. I know friends, I know entertainers, they are just outgoing. They love it because that's their personality. I think it's how you grow up. I grew up an only child. I wasn't the cool kid in school. Once I got the attention...that energy coming to you, it kind of throws you off, especially in this day and age. It's so intense. The whole industry is built on people following you around and taking pictures or people trying to film you or people trying to TMZ you. It has become a biting industry. It's not good for people. I don't think it's good for entertainers. I don't think it's good for the whole music industry at all because it changes whatever you do.

Imagine if TMZ would've been around in Hendrix's day...
I don't think a lot of people would have made it. I really don't. I don't think we would've got a lot of things that we got. People act differently when they know they are being watched.

What do you think Jimi Hendrix would’ve thought of OutKast?
I think he would've thought we were interesting. I don't know if he would've liked us, I have no idea. I would hope he would've liked it, but maybe we would've been too down to earth for him.

Is OutKast a chapter in your life that is now closed or do you see yourself going back to that?
It's not up to me to close chapters because I'm not God or anything like that. But I can say, as the human side of me, I can say that that ship has sailed because I've done that before and I know how I am as a musician, as a person. I'm excited about new things. I think chemistry is really important. We were OutKast because of the chemistry, because of the excitement for wanting to be in the studio, because of the excitement of wanting to see what we could make. You just get to a point where you want to move on and see what's the next thing. It doesn't mean a confrontation thing at all; it's just a growth thing. Some bands last forever because they're still in it; they're still excited about the chemistry. They are still excited about each other. I'm just personally looking for something else.

I think it's harder for Black artists to do something totally different. Miley Cyrus can do it, Taylor Swift can do it. Except for Tina Turner, I can't think of many Black artists who were able to totally try something new and be embraced. Do you feel that way?
I do. I think Black people, we want comfort. I think we want to stay comfortable with stuff; we don't like a lot of changes. We just don't and I can understand that but I'm not here to please people in that way. I would hope somebody enjoys what we're doing, but I'm not really upset. I think I'm blessed that I've had success as a young guy. So now, if I sell 50,000 albums or whatever project, as long as I love what I'm doing, I'm fine with that because I've already had a career at this point. If I could sell a couple albums and a couple people come to the show, I could be surfing and help some more people come up in the industry — that's cool with me.

If Jimi Hendrix lived, where do you think his career would've gone?
It's hard to say because it's hard to go through a lot of ages. The Isley Brothers have probably done it the best; Aretha Franklin has done it in her own way. But, in the end, you have to kind of conform. But a lot of these non-conforming artists, I don't know if they would last because you get left behind if you don't conform. It's kind of hard.

Was it hard as an artist and actor to not have the Hendrix family support for the film?
It wasn't hard at all. I think it would've been cool if we could've had support from the family. Only in a kind of spirit way to know that they were happy and smiling on board. But from day one, [with] the script that was written, it never required any of that. It probably would've been cool to end the movie on a Hendrix song that people know, but I think [not having their support] was the biggest blessing for us because it forced us to make a different kind of movie. It forced us to get into this part of Hendrix that people don't get to see on YouTube.

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