Don’t ever say Joe Budden never did anything for you. Last spring, Joey introduced us to his girlfriend Tahiry Jose in a series of vlogs that made us feel like we were living with the couple. Tahiry was instantly appealing as a lovable Latin girl with a sharp mouth—but it was her Coke-bottle frame and sick ass-to-waist ratio that left bloggers and commenters wanting more. Whether she was getting ready to go to her bartending gig, fighting with Joey, or just standing around looking sexy, Tahiry always made for good YouTube TV.
After landing the cover of KING’s final issue, Tahiry saw her stock rise higher, even as her relationship began to deteriorate. While there were videos of disagreements between her and Joe, and even Twitter fights, not many people figured the five-year relationship was really in jeopardy, until a few weeks ago when both parties acknowledged that they were through. (Say it ain’t so, Joe!) Budden spoke on the subject briefly, but Tahiry has yet to open up…until now. In this exclusive interview with Complex, Tahiry breaks her silence on what went wrong in the relationship, how she feels about Joe as a rapper, and what she plans on doing next…
Complex: So what’s new? Are you still bartending?
Tahiry: Yes I am. I’m currently still in the same places that I’ve always been. I’m still bartending, but I’m there a lot less now.
Complex: How has your life changed since the KING shoot?
Tahiry: I’m getting recognized everywhere I go, I feel blessed. I have fans, and I’m hosting parties. People in the bars are like, “You’re Tahiry?” It’s an incredible feeling. I’m traveling more too. There’s been a lot of new opportunities.
Complex: So with you attracting people to the bar, have you asked for a raise or anything?
Tahiry: No, I haven’t. [Laughs.] I’m still taking it a day at a time. I’m trying to soak it all in and embrace it slowly.
Complex: After the KING shoot came out, you had the Internets going nuts over the photos. How would you describe your body type?
Tahiry: Sexy. Voluptuous. Curves are beautiful. And I thank God I got ‘em. I love me in a pair of jeans.
Complex: Some woman are just “busty”—you’re smaller on top, bigger on the bottom. I think that works in your favor…
Tahiry: The ratio. Of course! I mean, it’s a good thing. I don’t remember when butts came back, when all of a sudden having them became the style. J. Lo walked out in a dress and all of a sudden, “Oh ****, its fine to have curves!” I’ve always loved my curves. And the fact that everybody’s like, “Your butt!” I’m like, “No, it’s the waist,” you know the top is small. You put my ass on a bigger girl, it wouldn’t look as big. I thank God—and my mom—for my body [laughs].
Complex: So how do you think you compare to other “ass-tastic” girls like Amber Rose and Kim Kardashian?
Tahiry: How do I compare? I don’t even know why you asked that question or put me on the same list as Amber or Kim. That’s some good ****! How do I compare? Wow. I don’t even know how to answer that. I’m just honored for you to even ask, I don’t have an answer to that.
Complex: Do you look at pictures of those girls?
Tahiry: Of course! I’m looking through a Complex issue that Amber did and I was like that bitch is bad! And I love Kim. Which is why I’m like, how do I compare. I mean you have someone on TV with the hottest show right now and you got Amber, and then you have me. Maybe I’ll be there eventually, but I’m still here for now.
Complex: That’s a good answer. So, dealing with the relationship stuff…
Tahiry: Get to the juicy stuff…
Complex: You know Joe said the break-up is none of anyone’s business, etc. Were there multiple reasons or was there one big blowout?
Tahiry: Multiple reasons. He said it was nobody’s business? That’s what he said? ‘Cause he said so much. I don’t even know. At the end, he just lashed out all out of control.
Complex: What was the biggest deal-breaker for you?
Tahiry: I just feel like…I’m never going to speak bad about Joey. I love him. Five years. It was a long time. We were just growing apart. We were not in the same zip codes. I just didn’t feel like after five years we were building that foundation together. For a long time it was, “Joe, Joe, Tahiry, Tahiry.” When it was beneficial, it was Joe and Tahiry. But you know after five years, you’re supposed to feel like you’re building something. I didn’t feel like we were building anything.
Complex: Five years is a long time. Did marriage ever come up?
Tahiry: Of course! We discussed marriage. He’s a jokester so I remember one time I said to him, “Dude, what’s up? Where’s the ring?” I put the big Juicy keychain on and he was like, “We got to size it.” He said something like “I only have one album out, I need to put another three then think about marriage.” He says to me now, that it was a joke. But we’ve discussed marriage a few times.
Complex: Did you ever apply pressure on him to commit?
Tahiry: I never gave a date and time. I’m not that girl. I’m not going to apply that pressure ’cause I don’t want you to want to get married to me just because you know I want it. You’re going to marry me when you’re ready.
Complex: Right. So this year, a lot of people have said that you helped Joey be relevant again…
Tahiry: Really? [sarcastically]
Complex: Would you agree with that?
Tahiry: I won’t say that I made him more relevant. I think that people got to know him through his blogs. People got to know a rapper who was on his downtime, who was busy underground, who was busy releasing these digital albums and stuff. I think that the minute he started recording these blogs and then they see this girl and are like, “Oh my god,” they’re like, “Where has he been?” It’s like a combination of things—getting to know the fun side of him, or how humble and normal he is, and how crazy his Latina girlfriend is. So I think people think we’re relatable. I wouldn’t say that I made him relevant, per se.
Complex: Did you ever feel exploited?
Tahiry: That’s a good question. My mom thinks I was. I enjoyed it. I didn’t care. To me, the first time we went on this whole blog thing it was sort of like fun to him. He thought he was onto something. I think it caught us both by surprise. I enjoyed it and I wouldn’t change it.
Complex: So it was never like he was using you?
Tahiry: I don’t know his intentions. Again, he was my man, we were fine. We were in love. I think that sometimes he went overboard with certain things. Like discussing certain things that you don’t discuss online. But all in all, I enjoyed blogging. My life is an open book, I chose it that way, so I can’t be mad.
Complex: So, last week your Twitter account got hacked.
Complex: There have been rumors that Joe was behind the hacking. He definitely did it?
Complex: Seems a bit childish. Has he talked to you about that?
Tahiry: Again, a lot of it is out of control. He’s dealing with a lot of emotions. It’s five years so we’re both dealing with our emotions. You know if you’ve ever been hurt, or if you’ve ever lost something, or something’s just disappeared, or the rug was pulled from underneath you…if you don’t suffer, then you’ve never loved. People react to that suffering different and we’ve spoken after that. He’s apologized.
Complex: Now, what you just said, the rug was just kind of pulled from under him…
Tahiry: Listen! I said, “if the rugs been pulled from underneath”…I didn’t say if it was him or me! [laughs.]
Complex: Were you guys having problems? Or did it kind of blindside him?
Tahiry: Men and women again, are from different zip codes. You guys understand—well this is just my opinion—you guys don’t understand with words. You guys understand with actions. I think whatever happened between me and Joey, or the fact that the foundations weren’t as stable as they should be, it’s probably been happening as a woman, to me for a minute. Did we have happy moments? See the videos. We’ve had happy moments. By far, it was my best relationship. I’ve been in maybe two more. I don’t ever want to make him out to be a monster. But maybe it was a little shocking to him because, you know, everybody has their own brain, their own world going on.
Complex: What were some of your fondest memories with him? I know five years is a long time…
Tahiry: Yeah, it is tough…[breathes] you know, again, it’s the little things that guys fail to realize. Five years is a long time so it’s just the little things…You’re going make me cry and I have makeup on. My first surprise birthday party he gave me. I never had one of those. [Tears up] You know what, I couldn’t tell you about special times because I can’t even think right now, but with Joey, just…I don’t know how to explain it. It was just the carefreeness, the laughter…and it was just easy. Then it stopped being easy. [Sniffs] The little things I probably can’t forget. But I can’t sit around right now and pinpoint…maybe when he held my hand when I was really nervous for the KING shoot.
Complex: Didn’t mean to make you cry…
Tahiry: I need a fucking cigarette. This is the first time I cried, first time since the whole thing.
Complex: I hear you. Here’s a question—why do you think Joey has so many conflicts with rappers?
Tahiry: He has plenty! I don’t even know how to explain it. He’s very strategic. Joey’s a very, very, very smart individual, to the point where it was exhausting my brain. He knows how to connect those dots and make it for him. I would say that.
Complex: So there’s a method to his madness…
Tahiry: Madness? I would say maybe not in the beginning. Maybe things just happened. You know how the media is. You might just say one or two things and they make it into this big blowup. And then once you’re in the situation, he works it. So he’s very strategic. Very intelligent. Sometimes he’s not looking for it. It just happens and he’s ready. Quick on his toes.
Complex: Now TahiryTV…is that an extension of JoeBuddenTV?
Tahiry: Yes it is. It’s kind of like a mini-divorce.
Complex: How is that going to work?
Tahiry: We haven’t really been talking. We just had a great conversation last night. I was happy that we did. But eventually I would have to get my own website or we’ll see what happens. We haven’t gotten there yet. He’s been busy doing what he’s doing, I’m busy doing what I’m doing.
Complex: Are things civil with you guys now?
Tahiry: I really want them to be. Breakups shouldn’t be ugly and I’m trying for it not to be ugly. Like I stated, we had one conversation last night and I was happy that we did. And I don’t know because you’re dealing with so many emotions—Monday you’re fine, Wednesday you’re nasty, Thursday, Friday, you know? You’re dealing with different levels. And I can relate because I’ve done some crazy **** when I’m in love.
Complex: Like what? What was the craziest thing you did?
Tahiry: This is going to make me sound crazy. I pushed the door in.
Complex: Hmm, explain to me what happened.
Tahiry: Now we’re digging deep. Okay about two years ago we broke up for five months. This was the only breakup in five years until now. I was angry and I had to get some stuff and he wouldn’t open the door. I was already out, I was at my mom’s house. I needed some time, he needed some time. He wouldn’t open the door and of course I thought he was having a party—you know what kind of party. So I knock on the door repeatedly and he doesn’t open it. Then I just pushed it. It must have been a really weak door because I’m a little girl—I’m like really small. I walked in to him looking at me like, “You crazy bitch.” [Laughs.]
Complex: So he looked at you like,”What? I’m not doing anything”?
Tahiry: No, he was just like, “You broke the door.” I was like, “Call somebody, I’ll pay for it. Why didn’t you fucking open the door?” This is crazy, crazy, insane love ****.
Complex: So now that you’re single, what are you looking for?
Tahiry: Holler! What am I looking for? What are you asking? For, in general? Or in a man?
Complex: Are you looking to get into something quick?
Tahiry: I’m like the quick J. Lo nevermore kind. Only when I’m over it though. This breakup has been difficult. I’m not looking. I’m looking to find me. People say it’s sick love. I like, I love, I breathe, I ****, and I eat you. That’s who I am. I think that’s one of my talents, to fucking love. That’s who I am. So when I’m there, I’m there 100%. But in doing that, I realized I lose me and my identity and what I want to do next because I’m living your dream. I’m like that supportive whatever-you-want, do-what-you-want-to-do. We’ll tear this **** down and not tell anybody and run. Like I’m Bonnie and Clyde kind of sick. And I feel like Tahiry needs to find Tahiry. Tahiry needs to find out what makes Tahiry happy. Tahiry needs to be alone maybe. Tahiry needs to stand on her own two feet and be happy just being by herself. And I think that’s what I am going to do. If I go on a date, if I want to boogie, or whatever, I need to walk in into my own place. It’s time for me to be with myself, and stop living your dream or stop loving you to the point where I forgot to love me.
Complex: That makes total sense. Would you ever date a Complex type of dude?
Tahiry: Would his name be Joe? [Laughs.]
Complex: I’m just saying! Or, maybe, another rapper?
Tahiry: I dated one other rapper [Ed. note—that would be Fabolous]. We’re very good friends now, contrary to belief. Very good friends. Remember after that I said, “Ugh! Never a rapper!” Not because he was bad, because it was a lot. People think it’s easy. All glitz and glamour, but it’s not that easy. Then Joey came. And when he came, it wasn’t supposed to happen, but I’m glad it did. I’m not interested in dating anyone right now. But I’m not saying never say never because you know **** happens.
Complex: So if a rapper comes and sweeps you off your feet, you’re not against it.
Tahiry: No, no. I’m attracted to a man who does whatever he does…and does it well. That’s a turn-on to me. You could teach a Little League game and I could just watch you show these kids and tell them what to do. If you do that well, then I’m fucking with you. That’s just who I am. To me it’s about your brain, the power. Like Joey’s very good with words. Joey can sit down and in 24 hours have a dis track right back at you, tearing your ass apart. That’s attractive. But he happens to be a rapper. I’ve not only dated rappers. It’s just what people believe. So as long as you do it well, I’m wet.
Complex: I will remember that.
Tahiry: Yeah, it’s about a man who knows whatever he’s doing.
Complex: Real talk, how do you rate Joey as a rapper?
Tahiry: Damn, you know I’m going to be biased. He’s my ex-boyfriend. He’s fucking amazing. Joey’s very talented. I think he’s very underrated. What’s the rating? From 1-10?
Tahiry: He’s a fucking 10. He’s a 10, just very underrated. He’s great with words. I used to be surprised like, “Really? Did you..? Aww man, you’re sick.”
Complex: You kind of touched on this before, but the relationship was very public, with Twitter, the video blogs, etc. Are you looking for the next one to be private?
Tahiry: Right now I signed a contract with an L.A. production company and I’m working on my own reality TV show about the struggles and my life as a girl trying to make it out after dating a rapper, after the dating period. I think a lot of women could relate to being with somebody half a decade and just saying, “Holy ****, what now?” Or you’re looking at yourself and just saying, “I could never see myself without you” and then one day, that’s gone. People know the ass, people know the pictures, people know the blogs. I’m just really shy. And people just say, “Oh she has a mouth.” No. I’m nervous too, sometimes. So it’ll be out spring 2010.
Complex: Can you tell us which channel?
Tahiry: No, it’ll be on a cable network, one of them. But we start filming next week.
Complex: Did you ever think that you would achieve this fame?
Tahiry: It just happened. Joey says he knew. To me, it just happened. To me, we both just looked at each other like, “It just happened!” You know what, I don’t care what he says because I remember the first clip, me underneath the covers. I’m like, “Motherfucker, I’m sick!” Next day, the one where I’m in the kitchen, which is the one they put on HOT97 like, “Have you seen this girl?!” I remember that and I said, “This ************ is going to bring this camera, let me put on lip-gloss.” I know him. I don’t know where he’s going with this, he didn’t even know how to put **** up on YouTube. He’s like, “I’m going to find out,” and I’m like, “I’m going to steal your fucking cables! Don’t you put me on blast! NO! I look crazy! My weave ain’t done!”
Tahiry: Fast-forward to the next day, we had like 5,000 hits. As a matter of fact, we went to bed at like 2 a.m., we got up at 8 a.m. and by then, we had all those hits. People were just intrigued. We looked at each other and I think that’s when he knew it. That’s when I was surprised, because I’m the bartender with a college degree but I don’t care about emailing you. I’m busy, let me go make my money and come back. If I had to though, don’t get it fucked up, if I could make money by emailing you, I’m going to email you. He looked at me and was like, “Babe, that’s the power of the Internet.” I said, “Holy ****! OK, I’m going to stop bartending and I’m going to get on the computer.” So yeah, I think we found out the next day.
Complex: Do you read rap blogs?
Tahiry: I do, I stay up on them, I’m an Internet solider, but I’ve tried to be out of the loop right now for a minute because of everything. I don’t want to read something that would cause me to get angry and knock another door down. [Laughs.]