T.I. Recounts How He Stopped Hustling And Started Rapping For ‘Fresh Pair’

The new episode of Fresh Pair is here. This week, trap rap godfather T.I. receives a custom pair of sneakers from Katty Customs, details his top five most influential Atlanta rap albums, and recounted tales of his time spent in the trap — as well as how he got out of it.

Near the end of the interview, host Just Blaze asks T.I., “Was there a point or a situation — what made you say, ‘Okay, I can put this part of my life behind me now.’?” Tip says, “Man, that’s a long story.” He details how he was put on seven years of probation and “only selling weed” as his concession to trying to do the right thing.

He was able to get a job cleaning planes at the airport but found out that his girlfriend at the time was pregnant. Along with DJ Toomp and T.I’s future longtime manager Jason Jeter, T.I. decided to record a demo tape, pooling their resources to put together four songs. However, his partners came together to warn him to stop selling weed before he ruined his future.

Challenging them to find him an occupation as lucrative or connect him with someone in the music industry who could accelerate his career, he found out Jeter was an intern at Patchwerk Studios, where such local stars as Outkast and Goodie Mob had recorded. He went with him to the studio and his life was never the same. There’s more to the story, of course, but you can check that out for yourself above.