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Ja Rule talks Creation of “Put it On Me” in VIBE interview

By The Hip Hop Writer
Hip Hop Vibe Staff Writer

When Ja Rule was on top of his game, there was no one who could deliver as many hits as Rule, and in a short period of time. Due to his affiliation with Jay-Z and DMX, Ja Rule had already garnered much publicity. Ja Rule had the attention of the hip hop world, but he needed a way to maintain this. His debut album, Venni Vetti Vecci, was met with a strong critical reaction, but many felt the album was too similar to DMX’s 1998 releases.

With Def Jam wanting more gritty rhymes from Ja Rule and Irv Gotti seeing an untapped market, the stage was set for a complete 360 from Rule. Late in the summer of 2000, Ja Rule released “Between Me and You,” featuring Christina Milian. The song soon found its way to the top ten on charts and countdowns all around the world. Following his breakout hit, Ja Rule developed a formula, which he milked with his second single.

Even when Ja Rule’s downfall occurred, his rival rappers mocked “Put it On Me,” showing just how influential the song was, at the time of its release. Early in 2001, Ja Rule’s “Put it On Me” was released and became one of the biggest hits of the year. Over time, fans have realized how influential the music from Ja Rule was, at the time of its release. One of the earliest hits in his strong run was “Put it On Me” and Ja Rule explained to VIBE how the song came to be. Ja Rule explained he and his wife had an argument, which led to him displaying his feelings about her over the track.

There were a series of beats Irv Gotti had for Ja Rule and he ultimately decided to use Tru Stylze’s beat, which would become “Put it On Me.” The lyrics of the song came from Ja Rule writing of how important his wife was to him. Rule explained to VIBE how the voice is also an instrument, so it had to harmonize with the song. Vita’s verse was actually written by Cadillac Tah, but she said she brought a “sexy, but hard” vibe to the track. When it was time to submit the song to Def Jam, the label was close to rejecting it, because it was different from the previous songs from Ja Rule.

When Rule 3:36 was released, the copies were selling well and “Put it On Me” was a favorite. Due to the strong fan reaction, Ja Rule decided to make it the second single off the album. Lil’ Mo was recruited to sing the hook, along with Ja Rule’s hook, admitting she freestyled, because she did not want to take the song over. DURO, a popular engineer, suggested Lil’ Mo also sing an intro and outro for the song, which played on some radio versions of the single. The contributions from Lil’ Mo led to the song becoming one of the year’s biggest hits and it remains iconic.

Those were the days for Ja Rule, who since experienced one of the worst downfalls in hip hop history. Ja Rule is not saddened by his downfall, instead he has pushed hard for his comeback. In the time since his last album release, Ja Rule has been releasing several mixtapes and music videos for the internet. However, he finally returned with his P.I.L. 2 (Pain is Love) album yesterday.

Watch “Put it On Me” by Ja Rule ft. Lil’ Mo and Vita below:

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