Swizz Beatz reveals he got late rapper Nipsey Hussle half-off an art purchase, saved him from getting swindled
The revelation came in a recent conversation with Angie Martinez on an episode of 'Untold Stories of Hip Hop'
The famous hip-hop producer Swizz Beatz, whose joint venture with fellow production legend Timbaland helped spawn the massively popular Verzuz TV Instagram Live Battle music series, recently appeared on an episode of We TV's 'Untold Stories of Hip Hop'. In the course of his conversation with the show's host Angie Martinez, Swizz Beatz talked about how he and his good friend, the late great West Coast rapper Nipsey Hussle had bonded over their shared love of art. He also revealed that he had once saved Hussle from getting swindled over an art purchase and that the two had grown closer as a result of that experience.
While he was still alive, the Los Angles-based rapper Hussle was not only known as a West Coast hip-hop star, but he was also a successful entrepreneur who deeply involved in social activism and community building. He was tragically shot and killed on March 31 late year after an altercation with an associate of his, Eric Holder Jr, outside his Marathon Clothing store in LA, after Hussle accused him of snitching. The event sent shockwaves throughout the hip-hop music community and Hussle was later honored at the 62nd Grammy Awards for his societal contributions and incredible talent that was taken from us too soon.
However, what may not be as widely known is the fact that Hussle was also an art connoisseur and often relied on his good friend Beatz's knowledge of the art world to help him in his future purchases. As Beatz recounted to Angie Martinez, "He was calling me every week about art. I remember him calling me from a gallery, they were trying to take advantage of him on this one piece," the hip-hop producer revealed. "They didn't know he was putting them on the phone with me. He was just like, 'I'm gonna put you on the phone with somebody that's gonna negotiate this for me.' And the dude was like, 'Yeah, there's not too much to negotiate.'"
It turns out that Beatz "knew everything" about the Murakami art print that Hussle wanted to buy, and realized that the art gallery was attempting to swindle Hussle by raising the price by an exorbitant amount. "I just knew that they were trying to take advantage of him just from the price. They had it marked up by fifty percent over that piece," the producer stated.
So when Beatz told the gallery owner who he was, the gallery owner instantly recognized his art credentials (Beatz founded The Dean Collection along with his wife Alicia Keys) and immediately knew that the jig was up. After a brief discussion with Beatz, the gallery decided to slash the asking price to half the amount for Hussle. "They knew they couldn't play with me," the producer chuckled, who told the owner "Let's not do that. You're going to give him half-off on the piece."
After Hussle got a 50% "discount" on the piece, the rapper later called up Beatz to find out what he had told the gallery owner. "I just told him to do the right thing,'" the producer revealed. "Ever since then, he was calling me about art every other week... I became his art consultant. It was a good vibe to see him in that space." As Angie Martinez remarked in closing, "That's a good story!"