Now that Chi-Ali is free from prison after doing 12 years on a murder charge, the rapper who got his start in the early 1990s as a teen has to get something off of his chest.
"I took a life, and you can't take that back, so that's probably the worst thing one can do," he said when he appeared on Wednesday's "RapFix Live." "I want to send my condolences to the family, and no matter what I say, I'm never glorifying that. I want everybody to get that straight."
In January 2000, eight years after he released his debut album, The Fabulous Chi-Ali, the MC shot and killed Sean Raymond in the Bronx, New York. Ali went on the run for 15 months, appeared on "America's Most Wanted," and then was eventually apprehended and served 12 years out of a 14-year prison sentence after taking a plea deal. Even though he is thrilled to be home, the rapper does understand the damage he caused. "It feels surreal to be home. I'm truly blessed," he said. "You know, I committed a crime that I wish I could go back in time and undo. However, I can't, and you have to live with your mistakes and learn."
Since being released from prison in August, Chi has returned to the studio, recording music with his old buddy Fat Joe and new friend Skyzoo. Ali said his new music may contain violent undertones, but he wants to clarify that he is only trying to entertain. "I've been making music so far since I've been home, and some of them may get a little raunchy as far as violence is concerned, but I'm not trying to glorify that," he maintained. "It's entertainment when it comes to that."
It was a heartfelt moment when Chi brought his 14-year-old daughter Sky onto the "RapFix" set Wednesday. She was just a toddler when he was sent to jail, but now the proud papa is ready to make up for lost time. "I missed a large part of her life, and a lot of children may resent their parents for that," he explained. "I feel, at times, there were things that I probably missed that she felt a way about, but I want you to know that wasn't under my control."
Instead of dwelling on the past, however, Chi-Ali, in front of the "RapFix" audience, pledged to make a push toward a better tomorrow. "If I could've been there, I would've been there, but I'm here now," he told Sky. "So we don't have to look at the past; we're gonna build for the future."
Are you looking forward to hearing new music from Chi-Ali? Let us know in the comments!