Tonight as Abuja plays host to the first ever MTV Afica Music Awards (MAMA), one of the artistes expected to headline the concert will be American rap artiste, Jayceon Terrell Taylor, and the one they call The Game.
The heavily tattooed musician who is on top of his game spoke to a select team of entertainment ,The Gamewriters and as captured by Ogbonna Amadi our Entertainment Editor in this interview , he shares his very interesting life story and his struggle through rough patches and finally to fame and wealth.
He began this story with his experience on his visit to Nigeria. The first time he visited Africa was when he stopped over in Kinshasa, Congo.
“I’m proud to be here in Africa. The last time I came to Africa, I spent only a day but this time I’ve spent 7-8 days already and I’m happy.
When I look at the faces of the people here, they are very receptive and loving, so I’m giving the same love back to them. I love the whole company that’s been around me. No matter where I am, I’m enjoying this whole great show.”
We want to know what you feel about being nominated to perform?
I don’t really give a damn about award shows because when I look my kids and all that I’ve accomplished, I feel great. I’ve never really cared about winning any award. When my colleagues win awards I appreciate them and wish them well.
To be nominated for any award is a good thing and I appreciate it but I don’t care if I wasn’t nominated.
I’m a young man of 28 years, and I got two kids, my family is doing great, got a lot of houses and I am mean rich like sh-t, so no matter who wins the award, I wish him the very best.
I’ve been to two places in Africa that remind me where I’m coming from and that is Kinshasa and Nigeria. Yes, when I look out on the streets of this hotel, I see kids trying to make money, doing what my friends and I did when we were young.
Today, I can’t stop thanking God for uplifting me and my family to the level I find myself now, so I’m just happy.
Do you like African food?
Yes, we all are in the same spirit. The breakfast I had was good. I don’t know what they put in the egg but it’s good but I don’t really know about the food in Kinshasha, I mean their chicken is like bubble gum.
All the same, me and my friends enjoyed ourselves. This people I call my friends are people who I share the same story with and anytime I’m going around the world, we go together.
How do you see African women?
Wow! African women are very beautiful but you know something, I’ve got my wife and family at home and I’m just cool with that.
In the midst of all the controversies, what is it that’s kept you strong?
In the 90’s, I never knew I could rap until 2003 when my girl friend got pregnant for my first son. Before then me and my pals were just stealing and killing on the streets.
And when the pregnancy was three months, I began to think about what I would do to sustain the future of my baby. I had just six months and was running out of time. That’s when I made a demo and I had no option than to resume in the studio.
Every single day, it became clearer that I just got to succeed. Every time I’m thinking about my family I’m stronger and happy.
I’m African- American so I love Africa and their music. But even if I don’t know what it sounds like I don’t really care because I believe my guys here in Africa have got to make money, to be better people.
So I’m cool with their music.
Is there anything that scares you in Africa?
No, nothing scares me. The only thing that scares me is thinking about not being able to provide for my family for any reason. With that in mind, I just go on and on, no stopping. I’ve not seen anything about Africa that I don’t like.
Certainly there are so many things that need change in Africa, like seeing little children running around the street to make ends meet, like a mother carrying a baby on her back and another on her hand and may be having a luggage on her head at the same time.
California is a big city but wasn’t built in a day. The only problem with Africa is that people are not willing to try. Generally, there’s nothing about African culture which I don’t like.
You’ve done a lot of collabos with several artistes in the West, East and South Coasts, do you think you can work with an African artiste?
Why not, if he’s good and original.
What are you guys leaving behind for us to really improve our music here?
My life story provides hope for many children out there. Five years ago I had bullets ripping all over my chest and I felt like I’m going to die but I’m alive today. Providing hope is part of what we stand for.
Right now I can say that we’ve shown you the way. It’s either you follow us or you try to do it your own way, we’ll stand by you and are proud of you as long as you make it.
In life you’ve got to believe in yourself and you’ll make it. I want young people to keep believing that they’ll make it because my life is an example of believing and working hard.