Ice-T has shown his support for creating a retirement fund for ageing rappers after Swizz Beats brought up the idea earlier this month.
Swizz suggested setting up a programme to support rappers who needed financial assistance in their retirement, noting elder members of the hip-hop community may not be as financially stable as the younger generations.
Ice-T has now shared his thoughts on the idea, saying he agrees with it. “I’ve always looked out for people like [Grandmaster] Caz and [Melle] Mel – those have been my friends,” he told HipHopDX.
“I don’t have a problem with it. I don’t expect the young kids to be involved in it, but then you do have enough people like myself and Swizz and people who have been very successful, you know? There’s no retirement for rappers. There is nothing. A lot of them have fallen on hard times.”
Ice-T acknowledged that setting up a fund would require something more sophisticated than having one person hand out money to people. “I think what they’d have to do is create a board of people – maybe like the Universal Hip Hop Museum – that would be able to handle the funds and get it out to people in need,” he suggested.
He continued: “The first generation of rap is unrecorded rap. It’s before records. So all the hip hop that happened in the streets, it was only on cassette tapes. That’s the first generation. By the time people heard Melle Mel, [Grandmaster Flash &] the Furious Five, Sugarhill Gang, hip hop was already a culture. So, how far do you go back? I mean, Run-DMC was like the first rap group to get paid.
“I think there should be some kind of an insurance plan something people can donate to. See, certain people from that era are OK. Like, I’m OK, Chuck D’s OK. Russell [Simmons] is OK. Jay-Z’s OK. Puff’s OK. LL’s OK. There’s a lot of people that are OK, but a lot of people aren’t. It’s worth investigating. I would be part of it. I definitely would donate.”
Meanwhile, Ice-T’s Body Count band – which features members of Hatebreed, Evanescence and Power Trip – released their seventh studio album ‘Carnivore’. In a review, NME said: “‘Carnivore’ is a depressing reminder of how little has changed and how far we still have to go […] They might not be the world’s most dangerous band anymore but as long as there’s social division and terrible politicians calling the shots, there’ll always be a place for Body Count.”