N.O.R.E. has found a second act after establishing a legitimate career in rap. The Queens, New York native gained prominence in rap after releasing top hits such as “N.O.R.E.,” “Super thug,” and “Nothin.’” His debut album, N.O.R.E, was certified platinum and led to collaborations with artists such as Pharrell, Swizz Beatz, and Lil Wayne.
But N.O.R.E., whose last album was released in 2013, has found a life after rap with his podcast series, “Drink Champs.” The weekly podcast, featuring DJ EFN, was launched in 2015 and has featured entertaining interviews with Sean Combs, Dame Dash, and Snoop. During an event curated by Dutch Masters during Art Basel, N.O.R.E. revealed how he crafted his new career in podcasting.
“My boy DJ EFN kept pushing me to do a podcast,” N.O.R.E. said. “So I did one and then that podcast went viral. After that, I realized for so many years, people have been benefiting off of me. So I decided to finally benefit off of myself and it worked.”
The success of the hit podcast caught the attention of Combs who decided to help take the series to a new level. In November, N.O.R.E. and DJ EFN signed a deal with Combs to televise the “Drinking Champs” on Revolt TV and its other media properties.
“Diddy has been my friend forever,” N.O.R.E. says. “We never had a chance to work together, and he though what we was doing was dope. I think what he’s doing is dope by having a Black-owned, 24-hour television network. They’re new and we are too so why not do a collaboration and see how it works out? So far, it’s going good. We hit the number three show on cable for that hour and we hit the number five show on cable for all the networks and this is our first time being on cable so I think it’s a great start.”
N.O.R.E.’s focus on branding the “Drinking Champs” podcast appears to be his primary focus these days. At this point, he’s taking a break from rap to explore different stories in hip-hop.
“I don’t even make music anymore.” he revealed. “The process [crafting a career in podcasting] is me having fun and living life. If you’re not having fun with what you’re doing, then stop doing it. That’s my take on life.”