[artist id="1225081"]T.I.[/artist] may be locked up, but the Grand Hustle CEO is still providing inspiration for his artists from behind bars.
While gearing up to release his new album [article id="1659486"]PL3DGE[/article] on Grind Time/ Grand Hustle/ SMC in May, ATL rapper [artist id="1231808"]Killer Mike[/artist] paid a visit to MTV News and spoke about T.I.'s involvement on his new project. "He was involved as I needed him to be. If I needed him a lot, he was there a lot," he said. "If I needed him a little, he was there a little."
Before turning himself in to authorities to begin serving his latest [article id="1653747"]11-month sentence for a probation violation[/article], T.I. spent his last few hours of freedom helping Mike film the music video for PL3DGE's first single, "Ready Set Go."
"I needed him to shoot the video before he went to jail, and instead of spending that night before he went to jail with his family, he spent it shooting a video with me," Mike said with admiration. "So, if that's any expression to how dedicated he is on helping see the artists on Grand Hustle — or associated with Grand Hustle — win, then that's it."
In fact, Mike has been so overwhelmed by Tip's support of PLE3DGE that he was nearly moved to tears. After sending T.I. an email asking about his well-being, Mike was taken aback by Tip's response. "It almost brought a tear to my eye, because when Tip hit back, the only thing he could say was that he was sorry that he's not out to help promote [the album] and push it and [that] he loves the fact that I'm finally gettin' the look I deserve and how's [Grand Hustle artist Young] Dro," Mike shared. "It's just like, you're in prison and you care more about how our tour is doin' and our songs than us feeling bad about you being in prison."
Killer went on to defend the Grand Hustle CEO, despite all his legal drama. "I know the public perceives him one way, but you just don't meet human beings who are able to surpass where they are physically in their space and care more about the happenings of other people," Mike said. "And him feeling bad that his incarceration is adversely affecting us, he's an amazing man for that."