Sunday, March 30, 2008

I Am Da Streetz

He’s seen it all: shiesty business dealings, family turmoil, prison, and almost death. Now independent rapper Streetz wants to take us on the journey with him, from his struggle of coming up out of the most terrifying areas of the Caribbean, where shootouts and all-out war were the norm, to coming to the U.S. with nothing but a bag and a dream. Streetz, CEO of Street Value Entertainment, is now working towards pulling off his next dream: becoming the biggest rapper to ever come out of Atlanta.

Tale of the Streetz, Part 1:

When it came to hip hop, the only names that came to mind were Pac, Jay, Nas, Big, and a few others. I never paid too much attention to it, especially growing up in the Caribbean where the main focal point was survival and getting money.

I never had dreams of hip hop stardom, only hood fame and all that came with the spotlight. After being able to successfully navigate myself into the elite circle of muthafuckas getting real money, and doing real things, was the first time I started to think about what else the world had to offer outside of the Caribbean. Over the next few years I watched Winky get shot in the head, Scooter assassinated, and heard stories about bull hitting a major lick and disappearing (later found dead somewhere in Jamaica), and some of my old heads getting brutally murdered. Shit…. Those who weren’t in the grave were getting so much time in jail that I forgot that they were even out at some point. For me, it was time to take a different route.

My mom had gotten shot but survived. My dad was one of the biggest rude boys ever born in the Caribbean and when he went to jail for life I picked up the art of hustling and took it to another level investing in business, concert and a team of young ruthless mutherfuckas that would become— to the world of hip hop — Street Value Entertainment. But it wasn’t until a chance meeting with the brethren Big Pun (R.I.P.), a slew of trouble, and bad investments into the wrong artists, that would lead me to follow my dreams and start all over with nothing more than a dream and a hustler's spirit and fuck it, God.

It was summer ‘98 when I landed at Miami International Airport with nothing more than a duffle bag and a bible. I didn't know what to expect, but fuck, I was ready for whatever. Quickly adapting to this place called America (where the roads were made out of gold . . . ha ha…YEAH RIGHT) and all it had to offer.

Miami was real fucking hood and everyone was hustling; even the family I was staying with was getting it in, so what the fuck was I suppose to do? I felt so at home it was crazy. It was second nature to assemble a squad and get back on my grind, while at the same time stretching out the music shit, looking for niggas to sign. I never really wanted to do the artist thing, but more of the Puff thing until the Jay-Z thing kicked in (where it’s all about being an entrepreneur and a star). After realizing that everyone wanted to be rich and nobody wanted to work, was when I said fuck it and started investing in myself.

I was always having niggas ask me what the hell I did or was doing (guess we was looking like rappers before we really knew what rappers was supposed to look like) and they knew the shit I was talking about was real, so it made sense: we started treating this shit like the block, and just chopping up CDs until the shit caught on and from there we put the “two for five” rules back in effect.

We stayed in the A before the vibe was even jumping dred. And I just liked it a lot out there, so a nigga moved. The music scene was crazy out here, Pastor Troy was hitting, along with some other artists, and freaknik . . . I had never seen nothing like it before in my life! Girls hanging out cars and so many black people partying- I almost felt like I was back in the Bahamas.

As far as living, we was getting money. As far as this music we had no connect to getting in. Throughout my time trying to find my spot in the game, I had met a bunch of lying ass rappers and producers, some of the biggest names with they bullshit promises and fast talk. MODOSICK they would talk that shit that, in the hood, would get them killed. The music game was my new hustle and shit and I was going to hit my lick on my terms and by my rules . . . I AM DA STREETZ.