T.I. On Why The BET Hip Hop Awards Are ‘Cornerstone’ Of The Culture
T.I. reflects on his career, why now is a “phenomenal” time in his life and what he’s looking forward to at the 2020 BET Hip Hop Awards.
Speaking to radio host Head Krack in a recent virtual press conference, the Atlanta trap trailblazer reflected on his musical legacy amid the recent release of his eleventh studio album, The L.I.B.R.A.
“It’s a phenomenal time in my life to be participating or even be acknowledged or considered at the BET Hip Hop Awards,” the 40-year-old. “This award show is the cornerstone of our culture.”
Despite all that he has accomplished and his various ventures, the Grand Hustle chief shared that music is going to be his “first love.” He added, “Music has definitely been the glue, the conduit, and the instrument that has allowed all of these other things to be possible. Music has definitely been guiding my steps.”
Though, his Trap Music Museum holds “a special place” in his heart as well.
“It wasn’t supposed to be a thing. It was really just an installation, a pop-up, to celebrate the 15th anniversary of trap music, and the people appreciated it,” he revealed. “Every week, it’s kept open by popular demand. I never set out to do a full-time museum.”
Besides, he jokingly added that he’s too afraid to close it now out of fear irate trap enthusiasts might “burn [his] building down” if he did so.
With Master P this year’s recipient of ‘I Am Hip Hop’ accolade, Head Krack asked Tip what does the hip hop elder statesman mean to him. Tip underscored how the New Orleans rap icon was one of the first individuals to pave the way in terms of advocating for the rap community, and the Black community in general, to “put ourselves in positions of authority, power, ownership, and have equity in our art.”
“[Master P] is an exemplary symbol of mentorship, entrepreneurship [and] independance. Just a mogul in so many ways. He showed us how much we can use the things that we don’t know to get the things that we don’t have,” he said.
Be sure to tune into the 2020 BET Hip Hop Awards, which airs tomorrow, October 27, at 8/9c.