With money comes power. And with a ridiculous amount of money comes the ability and freedom to enjoy oneself outside the realms of how normal people enjoy “entertainment”. Ultimately, this is something that we’ve seen our favorite rappers partake in throughout the years. Probably dating back to the eras of Biggie Smalls and Tupac Shakur when Death Row Records was the most formidable label on the streets and kingpin Suge Knight was equally as imperious.
During the late 90s Tupac and Biggie were regularly photographed in casinos with girls draped over them, chugging on King Edward cigars and Dom Perignon on a virtual conveyor belt. Throwing money at roulette tables like it was play money, the wealthiest rap superstars soon found their home in the most lavish casinos that Las Vegas had to offer.
Unfortunately for Tupac in 1996 an unnamed gunman killed him after leaving the renowned Bellagio. But his legacy lives on and the appeal of casinos has transcended across today’s generation of rap icons.
Jay-Z, the ever-consummate businessman even tried to co-own his own New York casino with the city’s Governor David Paterson but after being lambasted by the media, the rapper pulled the plug on the investment. That doesn’t mean that Jay-Z shied away from any other further investment. Just recently the high roller bought a stake in champagne brand Ace of Spades.
But it’s the modern day rap artists that are looking at casino gaming differently. Ever since InterCasino the first online wagering casino was launched, people had the platform to practice the likes of blackjack at home against other like-minded competition. Now stars like Ja Rule are using their skills to perform on a professional level and earn money and, notoriety through casino gaming.
Unlike the Biggie and Tupac’s of the 90s, Ja Rule isn’t blowing money for the sake of it, in fact he has been studying poker under the tutelage of poker hotshot and future Hall of Famer Phil Ivey. Since they became friends he has competed against some of the world’s best poker players and has continued to build a strong friendship with the biggest ever cash game earner poker has ever seen.
It’s a testament to the business acumen of today’s rap stars; the likes of Ja Rule and Jay-Z have adapted to the changing landscape that surrounds them and earned money, where before it would have been floundered.