JAY-Z,l and Nipsey Hussle, photographed by Jennifer Johnson at a PUMA event celebrating the Crenshaw rapper’s Grammy nomination, held at The Peppermint Club in West Hollywood on January 16. Nip’s debut studio album Victory Lap is nominated for “Best Rap Album” at the upcoming 61st Grammy Awards; while Hov is nominated for three awards alongside his wife Beyoncé.
The party also served as an anniversary celebration of sorts, with it being one year ago that Hussle signed an endorsement deal with the sportswear company. Hov’s longtime friend Emory Jones was critical in bringing Nipsey into the PUMA family, working alongside the brand’s Manager of Entertainment Marketing Chief Johnson. “It’s part of me being an L.A. native,” Hussle said of his alignment with PUMA. “Certain sneakers were a part of our culture growing up. The Clydes, the Suedes, some of the classic silhouettes we just grew up wearing them.” Jigga has been a longtime supporter of Nipsey and his journey through musical independence. In September 2013 Nipsey had taken a risk by selling 1,000 limited edition physical copies of his eighth official mixtape, Crenshaw, for $100 a pop. The mixtape was also released for free online, but Nipsey saw an opportunity to test his reach in the rap game and break the traditional release system. “It’s the price of revolution,” the South Los Angeles told Rap Radar upon release. “It’s the price of rebellion against an industry that has tricked us all into making products that have no soul, for fear of not being heard if we don’t do what they say.”
Shawn “Streets is Watching” Carter caught wind of Hussle’s “#Proud2Pay
” release plan, and had journalist and friend Elliott Wilson send a supportive “#NewRules
” salute on his behalf. (Continued below)
#JAYZ @nipseyhussle @jenjphoto @PUMA