Master P Recorded with Nipsey Hussle 2 Days Before His Death, Says 'His Legacy Is Going to Change Lives. This Man Was a Star'
When Master P stepped into the studio with Nipsey Hussle to record a song for the upcoming film I Got the Hookup 2, he says both rappers wanted to create “street music with some soul and substance” — the result was “Street Millionaire.”
Just two days later, on March 31, Hussle (real name Ermias Asghedom) was killed in the parking lot of his Los Angeles clothing store. He was 33. “Street Millionaire”, which is set to release July 12 on the premiere day of I Got the Hookup 2 was possibly the last song the “Hussle & Motivate” musician ever recorded.
“This was a talented brother who cared about the community and did a lot [for it],” Master P, executive producer and star of I Got the Hookup 2 (a sequel to the 1998 crime comedy) tells PEOPLE. “This man was a star. His legacy is going to change so many lives.”
Get an exclusive preview of the track (which includes explicit language), below, as well as the film’s trailer, above.
Following his death, the Los Angeles native debuted four songs on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, three of which (“Double Up,” featuring Belly and Dom Kennedy, “Last Time That I Checc’d,” featuring YG, and “Dedication,” featuring Kendrick Lamar) are from Hussle’s 2018 album Victory Lap, according to Billboard.
“Everything he got after he died, he deserved that before,” Master P, 44, tells PEOPLE. “He could really make music. People know now. His music touches millions of people now. I had people say, ‘You know, I never listened to his music. It’s really good’. But you waited ‘til he died? It makes no sense.”
The rappers track, “Racks in the Middle,” featuring Roddy Ricch and Hit-Boy, entered the Hot 100 at Number 44. According to Nielsen Music, Hussle’s music streams were up 508% just one week after death.
But, with the release of “Street Millionaire” and the rest of the I Got the Hookup 2 soundtrack on the horizon, Master P wants to help give his late friend even more of the recognition he deserves — not only for his music, but for his charity work and his commitment to longtime love Lauren London.
“He took care of his kids and he took care of his girl,” Master P tells PEOPLE. “I do a lot in the community where he lived because of him. The marathon will continue. Through this project, we’ll be able to go back and take care of kids in the community and show them that it’s about doing what’s right, ‘Don’t worry if you’re not celebrated. Keep doing what’s right’.”
Master P says both he and Hussle wanted to dig deeper with “Street Millionaire” and use it as an opportunity to speak to young people. Lyrics like, “Blueprint, we’ve got to stop killing us / Man, killing the leaders, killing the ones that sacrifice and paving the way, that’s putting the money back in the hood / Man, we’re buying properties, we’re buying buildings, we’re investing in us. / We’re trying to build a generational wealth and it starts right here in the hood, man” reflect this.
Aside from the Hussle track, I Got the Hookup 2’s soundtrack has a good variety of old-meets-new style and hip hop-meets-R&B. Master P tells PEOPLE, “I think it’s going to be an incredible project. I can’t wait for it to come out.”
The rapper and actor stars opposite his son, Romeo Miller, in the upcoming film, which features a large and diverse cast.
“This is going to be a new wave,” Master P tells PEOPLE of the film’s potential. “A lot of African-American and Hispanics and Latino filmmakers are going to benefit.”