T.I.‘s first video, “No Matter What” off the upcoming Paper Trail, dropped this week. One thing not readily apparent, on first listen, is the song’s lack of curses.
Could it be the influence of Andrew Young?
The 76-year-old Andrew Young is the former mayor of Atlanta; has marched with Martin Luther King Jr.; and despite T.I. being caught stockpiling machine guns, believes T.I. has the ability to touch the youth in a positive way. Talking to the Macon Telegraph, Young said..
“He’s bright enough, sensitive enough, vulnerable enough and intellectual enough that he might be able to help the society deal with the problem of violence.”
Andrew Young invited T.I. to his home where they had a three hour conversation; among other things he talked to T.I. about King’s legacy. The info stuck. In a recent interview, T.I. spoke about MLK Jr’s initial reluctance to be a civil rights leader.. “Once King saw that no one else wanted that responsibility, he was forced into it. People depended on him and pushed it on him. It wasn’t until (Young) said in Montgomery, AL. that King accepted the responsibility of being the leader of the civil rights movement. He (Young) compared that to my situation.”
T.I. isn’t promising he won’t speak as TIP on future albums, but says he will try to show more of the pitfalls of the Trap instead of blindly glorifying it. He recently advised 100 kids about the importance of education and entrepeneurship.
Andrew Young has taken T.I. to visit Maya Angelou and hopes to take him to Africa before his jail sentence begins: I guess he’s looking for a Malcolm X/Richard Pryor style conversion.
Speaking on Andrew Young and his own future, T.I. said..“He’s a mentor of some sort to me. The thing is, I didn’t really expect to be the spokesperson for positive decisions in kids lives. That’s not necessarily what I saw for myself.”
We’ll see how his new direction pans out on the fan side..
T.I. “No Matter What”
This gets better the fourth time.