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The following excerpts are taken from Big L's last interview, conducted by Oxygen FM in Amsterdam in 1998.

Interviewer: "What are your opinions on the independent and the major thing at the moment?"

Big L: "Right now I'm putting out my own records because right now that's the best thing for me to doS to make major labels to respect me as an artist, y'know, to let them know that I really don't need y'all like that. I'm looking for a dealS not a deal, the deal. 'Cos anybody can get a deal. If I don't get the deal, then I'll continue to put my own music out, and make my own money, until they give me the deal I need, the deal that's gonna blow Big L up as an artistS"

Interviewer: "It's so positive to see the strength in hip-hop, that what started off is growing and growing and to see people like yourself still doing it. If something goes wrong with the major labels, you do it yourself."

Big L: "It's also for the love, for the love of the music itself. The financial reward is also great, but really without it I still got love for the game itself. In ten years, you probably won't still see me rapping, but I'm gonna be in the game somewhere, behind the scenes, producing."

Interviewer: "Hip-hop has gone so global now. Is that something that you would have ever envisaged when you first picked up the mic?"

Big L: "In the beginning, all I ever saw me doing was battling everybody on the street corners, rhyming in the hallways, beating on the wall, rhyming to my friends. Every now and then, a house party, grab the mic, a block party, grab the mic. I never really thought about making records and travelling the world. I didn't even think I could get a deal. I knew was a good MC. And then I went and made some demos, the first four or five labels just turned me away instantly. I was, like, heartbroken behind that because I felt I was better than a lot of MCs at the time. All of a sudden, [Lord] Finesse is calling me, like, 'Yo, one of the A&Rs from Columbia Records is really feelin' your music and he wants to sign you.' [deep sigh] You don't know what's that like, man. All my dreams came true. We just went into the studio, made the album, and the rest is history."

Interviewer: "Big L, peace man. Any words of wisdom?"

Big L: "Keep on lovin' Big L 'cos Big L love y'all. We gonna keep making hot music. The next album I'm gonna make is gonna be a classic. I'm not saying it just to blow my own horn or whatever. There's a difference between confidence and being cocky, and I'm real confident because I know what I'm capable of. It's gonna be crazy."

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