Nipsey Hussle grew up in a world with few choices and few constants. It is a place with prevalent unemployment, claustrophobic housing and death is always lurking. This makes it difficult to envision a future, yet hope survives. And although they aren’t topics reported by the news, numerous acts of perseverance, encouragement and integrity occur daily. As well as the innate desire to make connections – to feel safe in a chaotic world.
Nipsey Hussle (born Ermias Asghedom) and the millions of people growing up in chronic poverty live perpetually at the boundary of the unknown. A vigilance against the invisible terror is required, which becomes even more tiresome when you are blamed as the source of the terror, not a victim. In this struggle for dominion Nipsey demonstrated honesty, curiosity, and a conviction to not let others dictate your worth.
Despite the odds, Nip kept his balance to become the type of businessman and the type of artist who doesn’t hoard his vision but proliferates it. He welcomed us all in, to witness his life on the streets. To witness the beauty and heartbreak in his world, in hopes that we can finally see that his people are just like your people: craving peace and freedom and belonging.
But look, come to my hood
I'll show you desperation
Kids dead at 13 like Devin Brown,
with no explanation
Living in LA every single day
It's a war going on outside, no man is safe from
Lyrics from Payback
Shout out to the pain
That gave me understanding…
With a dream minus the means
my early teens was f*cking tragic.
Lyrics from Bigger Than Life
I feel like I got to tell you
you got something to contribute.
Regardless what you into,
regardless what you been though.
Lyrics from Face the World
But what is a mistake without the lesson?
See, the best teacher in life is your own experience.
None of us know who we are until we fail
They say every man is defined
by his reaction to any given situation
Well who would you want to define you?
Someone else or yourself?
Whatever you do, homie,
give your heart to it
And stay strong.
Lyrics from I Do This