Still pushing a public awareness campaign about the realities of his drug-dealing past and time in prison,Freeway Rick Ross recently spoke with AllHipHop about advice he’d give Bobby Shmurda in jail and his current standing with MMG rapper Rick Ross.
Addressing Shmurda’s current incarceration, Freeway Rick Ross recalled his own years spent behind bars and offered up a trio of life-changing book recommendations.
“What I did with prison is I turned my prison cell into a college,” he said. “An old guy told me in prison, ‘You can get your college degree two places: you can get it at Penn State or the state pen.’ With my situation I found out that I was gonna wind up getting mine from the state pen. So I turned my prison cell into a university. I read over 300 books. By the way, I was totally illiterate when I went to prison, had never read a book. I read over 300 books before I left, I don’t know how many magazines, newspapers. I read the L.A. Times everyday. I read the Wall Street Journal everyday. I read the USA everyday. Sometimes I’d read the New York Times. I educated myself and I think that’s what he should do. By the way, I’m gonna give you my three favorite books, same books I sent to Boosie, if I get your address I’m gon’ send’em to you: The Richest Man In Babylon, Think And Grow Rich, and As A Man Thinketh. You can’t go wrong with them three books. If you take them principles they gon’ make your jail cell a lot easier.”
Asked about the possibility of working and squashing his beef with Rick Ross, the original Freeway Ricky said, “I still stick my hand out to him.”
“I think he would be stronger with me than without me,” he added. “I don’t know if he knows it or not or if his handlers are not smart enough to realize that the country is divided. It’s probably getting more divided in my half. I’m out here in the streets, I’m going to the projects, I’m going to the slums. I’m going places that he can’t go or won’t go or for whatever reason…I believe I’m winning the streets over. Eventually it’s gonna be a position to where he’s almost boxing himself in.”
Speaking about whether the MMG founder is losing fans because of his copycat name and persona, Freeway Rick Ross explained the reactions he gets from young people after telling them about his story.
“When I go to schools and they find out that he stole my name and stole my reputation—because you know, Hip Hop is supposed to be authentic,” he said. “A lot of kids believe that it is authentic. When they find out that it’s not authentic, that you just blowing smoke, well they turn off.”