Photo via fugly.com
It’s been a rough couple decades for Pluto, and he’s ready to talk about it. “There’s been a lot of people talking [expletive deleted], like they know something. They don’t know me. They don’t know my life. This is for real.”
Pluto has had to deal with fighting labels his entire life. “I don’t care what the IAU says about me,” he tells TMS. “I don’t care what Neil Degrasse-Tyson says. I feel like a planet. What matter besides that? A trans-Neptunian object? What is that [expletive deleted]?”
Ever since he was discovered, Pluto has made a name for himself, beginning with his first album, 1995’s Pluto Doggy Dogg. Then, in 1998, his follow-up, Dogg of the Underworld, went platinum.
“Everybody knew me,” Pluto says of his stellar career. “I walk in the club and they’d start spinning my beats and we’d tear that place down.”
But some remember things differently. We spoke with recording artist Pharrell of the Neptunes, who was close to Pluto during his meteoric rise to fame.
“We watched him come in, sometimes he was a little off-kilter,” Pharrell remembers. “And yeah, it’s like he said, they’d come in and take over, but it wasn’t the party he says it was. He was out of control.”
Pharrell described Pluto as often being “cold” and “distant” during that time, but if things were bad in the late 90s, they were about to get a lot worse in the early part of the new millennium.
As pluto’s light began to dim, people started scouring the Kuiper Belt for other talent like his. And along came Eris.
“Yeah I got beef with Eris,” Pluto admits. “Twenty years ago no one even knew who she was and now they’re saying she’s bigger than me.”
Then, in 2006, the International Astronomical Union announced they were downgrading Pluto from a major planet to a Trans-Neptunian Object. The announcement was a blow to Pluto’s career.
“It’s like, all of a sudden, Dre won’t return my calls,” Pluto explains. “It really looked like the end.”
Pluto released a couple more Lps during this time with dismal reviews and abysmal sales. Broke and depressed, Pluto went back to the Kuiper belt to lick his wounds.
He has since been reclassified as a “dwarf planet” and is now returning to music as “The Planetary Object Formerly Known as Pluto”. The move is mostly due to a sour deal with his former record company over the rights to his back catalog, but the artist sees it as a positive thing.
“Yeah, I see it as kind of a big middle finger to the people who wanted to put me down and make me less than I am,” he explains proudly, “but I also see it as an opportunity to redefine myself and grow as an artist.”
The new album, titled The Return of Pluto, drops July 14, 2015.