Magazine article Newsweek

'Everything I Cook Is Good'

Magazine article Newsweek

'Everything I Cook Is Good'

Article excerpt

Byline: Jessica Bennett

Best-known for his 1995 hit "Gangsta's Paradise," Compton, Calif.-born rapper Coolio, now 44, is trying to move beyond the microphone. He's the star of a new weekly Webisode series on mydamnchannel.com called "Cookin' With Coolio," in which he pimps out his culinary skills and shares recipes for dishes such as "Tricked-Out Tilapia" and "Finger-Lickin', Rib-Stickin', Fall-Off-the-Bone-and-Into-Your Mouth Chicken." Coolio, born Artis Leon Ivey Jr., spoke with NEWSWEEK's Jessica Bennett.

Coolio, where have you been?

I'm about to release [a new] album, "Steal Hear." My six children have grown up. I've been divorced. Me and my new woman are working on a clothing line. And I've developed my culinary skills to a fine point. I've also changed my style of dress--I wear a lot of suits now.

Ah, so you're a businessman?

Well, you either be the business or you get played by the business.

Do you still have your braids?

I sure do. I have them in a brohawk--that's a mohawk for a brotha. My hairline has started to recede, so I had to change it up a little bit.

How'd the cooking show evolve?

I've been cooking for a while; I even got a little formal training. Me and my cousin were playing around in the kitchen one day and I said, "Damn, what if we had a cooking show?" It became something we realized could be a reality.

And you're having fun?

I'm ecstatic. I don't think I've ever used that word before. This show is our baby--she's really beautiful and she's an Amazon woman. …

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