Former Bad Boy rapper Shyne held a press conference in Belize yesterday; his first public appearance since being released from prison and immediately detained by immigration officials for four weeks, and then deported to his native country Belize last week.
Shyne changed his name from Jamal Barrow to Moses Michael Leviy while serving a nine-year sentence after a shooting in a New York City nightclub. Sean ‘P.Diddy’ Combs was also present during the incident, but was acquitted of all charges.
Speaking to students and reports at Wesley High School in Belize city, Leviy expressed the spirituality that influenced his name change. I want to be like Moses or King David or King Solomon. Those are the guys I aspire to be like. I didn’t want to be like the kingpin on my block; I wanted to be like the guy who parted the sea, that’s why I chose that name.”
He expressed the meaning and importance of education, drawing on examples from his own childhood. “I came up on the streets with guys that gangbanged and were into criminal activity, and those tools never worked,” he said. “Those tools, you either end up spending the rest of your life in prison or sleeping in a grave.”
Leviy told students how his father, now the Prime Minister of Belize, continually told him to go to school and get an education, but he never listened. He regretted the lifestyle he chose.
Shyne also covered questions on the future of his music career, confirming that he will continue to pursue the industry with the same raw style that made him famous. “Life is violent, life is troublesome sometimes — so don’t expect my music to be sanitized. I am just going to talk about what’s going on in the world.”