Did you know the 2 Live Crew boss is now a columnist for our compatriots at New Times down in Miami? It’s true, and after a few warm-up pieces (“Fire Heat Coach Erik Spoelstra”), Luther Campbell today addresses why Lil Wayne and T.I. risked their careers over firearms. Short version: Try going to the clubs they have to go to sometimes. As he explains:
Guys like Lil Wayne, T.I., Young Jeezy, 50 Cent — hard-core rappers — have to do shows in the hardest hard-core nightclubs where the thuggest of the thuggish congregate.
When those guys come to Miami, they better be going to the Lexxx, Coco’s, and the Take One Lounge if they want to maintain their street credibility. You go into one of those clubs and someone is going to have a gun.
The problem with working in entertainment, especially in the rap game, is that if you aren’t flashing anything, it means you ain’t got shit. So a rapper will go out flashing his chains and driving around in a nice car with big-time rims. Everybody knows you just did a deal for $5 million.
Thugs are well aware of this. They will case a club to keep an eye on who is buying all the bottles, who is wearing the most jewelry — generally scope out the place so they can tell their boys, who follow you home.
Campbell personally vouches for both Wayne and especially T.I. (“He is not one of the assholes in the game”), and notes, in the interest of full disclosure:
As for me, I own a gun, but I keep it at home. I don’t carry it because I have a very bad temper and I will shoot somebody. My mama once told me: “Only fools rush in.” Besides, I am usually at clubs like LIV, rapping about the birds and the bees for white people. I don’t go to places where I am going to need a gun.
“Rapping about the birds and the bees for white people.” Sums up a lot. Keep your eye on this.