Stevio...LA LA Lovin' It?

I'm British-born Chinese from Bristol, UK. I’m LA-based. I’m a hip hop aficionado. After 15 years in London I moved to LA to pursue a new career and outlook on life.

Back in the 80s I was a DJ. In the 90s I contributed to the world's first street style exhibition at London's Victoria & Albert Museum. In 2011, I had my first interviews published. Today, I’m keeping busy with music, art, photos and writing.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Jay Z goes back to his roots

American Gangster officially opened this weekend. Set in the 70s, it stars Denzel (Washington) as Harlem drug dealer, Frank Lucas, and Russell Crowe as a NYPD Detective, Richie Roberts.

I first heard about these Harlem 'drugglers' during UrbanWorld when Dame Dash talked about the his Harlem drug lord 'heroes'. His words were closing comments for his documentary, Mr. Untouchable. Unlike American Gangster, his film Mr. Untouchable centers on the story of Nicky Barnes another mass-merchant of heroin in Harlem. Barnes isn't overlooked in the Frank Lucas story and is played by Cuba Gooding Jnr.

Jay-Z These drug stories have inspired Jay-Z to has come out from behind his (Island) Def Jam CEO desk to go back into the recording studio. It's called American Gangster, but confusingly, is *not* the soundtrack tothe film. But it is inspired by it. He told Rolling Stone: "The album plays like a cautionary tale, but it's not really true [for me]," Jay confided with a smile at one point. "I really made it [out of the streets]. Al Capone didn't make it. Michael Corleone, Scarface — I'm iller than all them n----s."

Why does Jay-Z make these comparisons? You see, Brooklyn's Marcy Projects is where Jay-Z cut his teeth in the deal-making world before he became CEO. In the early days, if claims are to be believed, Jay-Z was doing deals on the corner selling drugs in Bed-Sty, Brooklyn. He kept writing rhymes and selling mixtapes out the back of his car and then he 'blew up!'....Jay-Z's is a true American Dream - a drugs to riches - and to fame - story.

New York magazine I haven't seen the film yet, but I've read the stories...For an explosive read about Frank Lucas check out this New York magazine article. New York magazine grabs another crazy article exclusive by reuniting Frank Lucas and Nicky Barnes. Read it!

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