Back in 2007, the Remy Ma/Makeda Barnes-Joseph incident and subsequent case was a big deal for me. I covered the trial for MTV (and later XXL) on the professional level and then, on a personal level, I had a good relationship with Remy. Back in 2006, I used to run the streets in NY a lot, Home, Guesthouse, Lotus, as far as clubs and the burger spot where the shooting went down was also a normal late-night destination. So, it wasn’t unusual for me to run into Remy around town.
This first started happening a year earlier, during Mixshow Power Summit in the Bahamas. All weekend long, it seems Remy and I would be at the same place, same time. We both noticed and later when she visited the Vibe offices (we ended up doing a feature story on her and album review after she charmed the staff) I think she winked or acknowledged it again. We even had lunch one time and she tipped me off to her next album title.
As for Pap, we covered him for Mixtape Monday (forget the exact project) video piece and I grabbed his info afterward. The shoot was done at Phillipe Chow on the east side. Who he was then is about the same as who he is now: stoic, grounded. Love & Hip-Hop really shows off a more charismatic side of him, but he’s older and around his family, so that’s to be expected. At the time, though, he felt guarded. I hit him up occasionally on the jack but it was what it was, you know?
So it was a surprise, really, when I woke up for work one day and checked my BlueBerry to find an email from Pap; he and Remy had started dating and…it was hard to believe, because to the public it came out of nowhere.
And then this:
“We always wanted to keep our personal lives personal, so that’s why we never went public with our relationship,” he wrote, from this Sidekick, which, if memory serves me correct, his address was firstname.lastname@example.org. “Right now, I just feel like she gotta live through me. Yes, we were scheduled to be married on a yacht April 27th. But due to circumstances beyond our control, we are now making arrangements to be married in prison.”
A major scoop. I confirmed I could run with it and he gave me his blessing. To state the obvious, that story took off.
It’ll be eight years for them this Monday.