T.I.’s “Top Back” Was Originally Meant for Juvenile
Back in December, one of the best rap podcasts out, Da Take Over, had none other than the great Mannie Fresh a.k.a. Mannie Glover sit down and give one of the most in-depth interviews he's ever done. What's more, the hosts, Thedo and Maq are incredibly well-versed in New Orleans hip-hop and Mannie's career, so they came correct with the questions. Most websites (including the one you're reading) ran with the Carter V snippets Mannie played at the end of the interview, but there were a ton of other jewels buried in the hour-and-forty-minute interview, including this one: T.I.'s "Top Back" was originally meant for Juvenile, and Tip actually took a shot at Juve for passing on the beat.
At around the 50:20 mark in the video above, Mannie starts talking about how it went down. "When I first did that song, it was Juve's song and Tip had already did the hook from past relationships we had," Fresh recalls. "Juve came in the studio, he was like, 'I don't like that shit, it's too loud.' And T.I. turned to me and was like, 'What the fuck he mean he don't like that!?'"
Mannie goes on to explain that at the time (circa 2006) they were trying to make Juve relevant again and Fresh thought he had the perfect beat to make that happen for the former Hot Boy. But when Juve turned "Top Back" down, Mannie said he was kind of hurt, and when T.I. says on the intro, "I'ma show these niggas what to do with one of your beats," that was apparently a jab at Juve for turning the song down.
"Tip felt some kind of way because of our relationship, and he was like, 'I gotta kinda throw it out there,'" remembers Fresh.
Mannie has said in the past how he made that beat on an EPS and an SP-1200 and even saved the beat under the title "Juvenile." "[T.I.] did all three verses, full-on. He already knew what he was gonna do, he had it memorized," Mannie wrote on Genius last year. "I was like, 'This is one of your singles, bro.' He gave me a modest, 'We’ll see.' Juve was like, 'Man, I should’ve set up on this one.'"
The entire Take Over interview with Mannie is worth a listen, as they also talk about Biggie being a fan of Mia X, difficulties he had with Birdman and Slim and a whole lot more. Watch it up top and listen to the classic "Top Back" record below.
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