Creatively Boundless

T.I.’s Transformation – AJ Allen by ajallen92

Over the years hip-hop artists have made efforts to reach the people and to change the dynamic of inner-city life through their music. Amongst much main-stream hip-hop there is a significant group of artists who pride themselves in their ability to affect young minds. Many of these artists take mistakes that they have made in their lives, or mistakes that they have seen their peers make, and find a creative method to inform their listeners on how not to make those same mistakes.

One artist who has used their music as a way to help young people not to fall into the same traps that he has fell into is T.I. He has experienced an exceptional amount of adversity throughout his career. He has had an exceptional amount of charges and arrests and has finally decided to take full responsibility for his behavior and change his life for the better. Due to his prior faults he has been sentenced to a year and a day in jail. His sentence with good behavior could potentially be shortened to 10 months.

It has taken T.I. many arrests and even the deaths of his friends for him to change his ways. In previous albums T.I. has spent a significant amount of time talking about drugs and guns. In his 2003 hit song, Rubber Band Man, he starts the song with, “Rubberband man/wild as the taliban/9 in my right/45 in my other hand.” This is a clear representation the life that the rapper used to live. Since then a lot has changed for T.I. he has became a completely new person. Maybe it was his most recent charge that caused his change of heart, but T.I. is proud to notify the public about his changes.

T.I. was required by law to serve 1,000 hours of community service telling children about the dangers of gang violence. The rapper took this even further, when he started a show on MTV to help kids who had made the same decisions that he had earlier in his life. T.I’s Road to Redemption was a show where T.I. would talk to kids involved in criminal activity and show them the consequences they would face if they continued to live the way that they were living. He changed many lives through this show, for not only the people who were on the show, but also his viewers.

T.I.’s most recent album, Paper Trail, has also been a way for him to showcase the mistakes that he has made and make things right with his fans. He devotes a significant amount of his album to telling his listeners not to make the same mistakes that he has. He still has the radio hits such as Swagger Like Us, Whatever You Like and Live Your Life but he has many other tracks talking about the changes that he has made in his personal life such as Dead and Gone, Slide Show, and No Matter What. The rappers turn for the good has shown his dedication to becoming a new and improved person, and his message of responsibility and learning your mistakes has been clearly expressed and hopefully embraced by his listeners. The rapper’s message to the public is clearly communicated in his song, Dead and Gone, when he says, “No regrets I’m blessed to say/the old me’s dead and gone away.”


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