Onetime Fugees producer/MC tells MixtapeDaily book will ‘revisit what it was like to be on top of the world and [then] buried beneath the world.’
By Jayson Rodriguez (@jayhovawitness)
No disrespect to Jay-Z or Trick Daddy, but if there’s a rapper who really needs to put pen to pad to write a book about his life, it’s John Forte.
In the years leading up to his music industry success, the former Fugees affiliate lived a charmed life, overcoming an impoverished childhood and going on to enjoy the privilege and opportunities that came with an elite private school education. That all came to a crashing halt, however, when in 2000 he was arrested at an airport after authorities discovered he was carrying $1.4 million worth of cocaine in a briefcase.
He began serving a 14-year sentence in 2001, but the term was commuted when outgoing President George W. Bush pardoned him in 2008. Now Forte plans to open up about the dark period in his life.
“It’s a pretty uncomfortable thing for me to do,” Forte recently told Mixtape Daily about his forthcoming book, to be published by Simon & Schuster. “In order for me to tell this story the right way and to do it justice, I have to relive this moment. Yes, it’s cathartic, but also to have this discipline to sit still and to revisit what it was like to be on top of the world and be buried beneath the world.”
Since being released from prison, Forte has mostly set music aside. While he’s still working on material, he decided he had to learn how to exist as a free man before returning to the scene that once made him, as he put it, a “vampire.”
“I think there was an expectation for me to come home and for me to cash in on the credibility factor,” Forte explained. “I was real. I was thorough. I did this. That wasn’t impressive to me. I went on a journey. I felt like I went all around the world, even though I was sitting still. I got to a pretty comfortable place in my headspace and my spirituality — that was still removed from society. So I had to come home and make sure I was still in tune with what was happening here.”