Too $hort | The Pimp Tape (Episode 660)

Too $hort (@tooshort) is a pioneer West Coast rapper who has probably been making music for longer than you’ve been alive. His new album, The Pimp Tape, drops soon.

“When I died, I sold another 1.3 million albums.” -Too $hort

The Cheat Sheet:

  • When and how did Too $hort die? (Spoiler: he hasn’t, but don’t tell Google.)
  • How and why has Too $hort kept business separate from his personal life?
  • How did Too $hort emerge from a middle class background to become an O.G. hip hop legend?
  • What keeps someone going and remaining relevant over thirty years in the entertainment industry?
  • Can music save lives? Too $hort thinks so, and has a new message for Oakland’s modern youth.
  • And so much more…


(Direct Download Episode Here)
(Download Transcript Here)

Regular listeners to The Art of Charm who are familiar with O.G. West Coast hip hop legend Too $hort’s work over the past thirty years may wonder how he fits in with our usual format.

Then they might consider the value in hearing what someone — who’s not only survived, but thrived in the entertainment industry over those thirty years (with six platinum and four gold albums) — has to say. Listen, learn, and enjoy!


More About This Show

Even though news of his death has been greatly exaggerated and he managed to survive working with both Tupac and Biggie during their feud, rap legend Too $hort doesn’t really have what he’d consider a hard luck story. He comes from a middle class background, is the son of two college graduates, went to a private school, and had ambitions beyond being a vendor at baseball games, cooking fries, and selling cassette tapes from a paper bag in high school.

But he’s always been driven, no matter the situation. Even though he started his career in the ’80s before the Internet existed as the brand amplifier it is today, he knew networking and branding were the way to get noticed and move forward.

“The appeal to me was never the money that I would make — it was always the audience I would get,” he says.

“The same thing that bought me tennis shoes when I was fifteen is buying me tennis shoes at fifty-one.”

Listen to this episode of The Art of Charm in its entirety to learn more about how Too $hort got his name, what he did to get his brand recognized before anyone knew what branding was, how he unceremoniously quit one of his first jobs, what his mother thinks of his music, how he feels about the subsequent etymology of a certain word he introduced to hip hop culture, what “blow the whistle” really means, and lots more.


If you enjoyed this session with Too $hort, let him know by clicking on the link below and sending him a quick shout out at Twitter:

Click here to thank Too $hort at Twitter!

Click here to let Jordan know about your number one takeaway from this episode!

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Jordan Harbinger - author of 668 posts on The Art of Charm

Jordan Harbinger has spent several years abroad in Europe and the developing world, including South America, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East, and speaks several languages. He has also worked for various governments and NGOs overseas, traveled through war zones, and been kidnapped -- twice. He’ll tell you the only reason he’s still alive and kicking is because of his ability to talk his way into (and out of) just about any type of situation. Here at The Art of Charm, Jordan shares that experience, and the system borne as a result, with students and clients.


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