This week’s “Big Facts” episode with Big Bank, DJ Scream, and Baby Jade is extra special. The co-hosts sat with rising rapper Hotboii for an in-depth conversation about several topics including the state of hip hop, his journey to stardom, and his current legal battle before turning himself into police custody on June 30.
The Orlando, Florida native, born Javarri Latre Walker, was booked into the Orange County jail after his bond was revoked in his RICO case. The Metropolitan Bureau of Investigation wanted the 22-year-old rapper in Florida since July 2021 on charges of racketeer influenced and corrupt organization – racketeering, and conspiracy to commit racketeering.
The “Nobody Special” emcee is among 32 individuals, including fellow Orlando rapper 9lokknine, who are facing racketeering or drug trafficking-related charges stemming from an extensive investigation into gang rivalries in the state’s Orange County called Operation “X-Force.” A total of 34 people have been arrested in connection to the operation.
Hotboii last communicated with his 1.2 million Instagram followers sharing a video clip of him in a prayer circle just before going into custody. The burgeoning artist captioned the post, “Last day out #TurningMyselfInRN.”
While the “Goat Talk 2” emcee couldn’t speak too much on his situation, for which he is facing up to 32 years in prison according to XXL, he was transparent, sharing that he was unsure what the future of his music releases look like and noting that he has been difficult for him to get specific requests — like performing outside the country — denied.
Still, Hotboii ensured fans the music was “in the vault” before detailing some of the struggles he faced that triggered him to delay the release of some of his work.
“I felt like I had lost myself a little bit,” the young star admitted. “Of course, I’ll post the snippet, but it’s like finding yourself to where it’s like you having fun with it again. Cause it’s like when you’re trying to find yourself that’s like the work; that’s work. Once you find yourself, that’s when you have fun.” The rapper said he ultimately found his footing and that the creative process has again become enjoyable.
With the possibility of facing nearly three decades behind bars looming over his head, Bank asked the young star what keeps him motivated to keep pushing for his rap career while his future hangs in the balance.
“I just be vibing. I really try not to think about it,” the “War Ready” artist shared. “I might have a drink or some shit — something to keep my mind off the shit. I keep me a female around. I’ll have me like a distraction. Have my son around. Shit like that.”
In preparation, Hotboii revealed he’s already started to essentially block certain things from his mind so that he’s not too overwhelmed while in custody. “I just got to cut everything,” he said. “Be around a select few people. Do everything… Spend all the time you can with the ones you going to miss the most; spend time with them. Cut everything else short.”
The “WTF” emcee was one of a few rappers hit with RICO charges. Prominent Atlanta rappers Young Thug and Gunna, including a dozen others, were arrested on racketeering charges last May as part of a 56-count state indictment, many of which are based on lyrics and social media posts. Twenty-eight of those defendants are affiliated with Thug’s Young Stoner Life record label.
When asked if he felt like the popular genre was seemingly under attack, the “All the Opps” rapper agreed. “I believe the rap game in trouble. The rap game most definitely in trouble,” he declared. “Everybody catching RICOs.”
Hotboii’s feelings also appeared to be based on the increasing number of deaths, predominantly gun-related, the industry has seen recently. “Being a rapper, it is dangerous, though,” the star said, echoing sentiments previously shared by veteran emcee Jim Jones. The Dipset co-founder previously declared that being a rapper was more dangerous than being a soldier during a 2019 interview.
“But you gotta know how to move too,” Hotboii continued. “But being a rapper put you out there….You might go somewhere thinking you low-key, a [person] might see you — made a phone like shit like that.” The artist encouraged aspiring artists to have self-awareness and self-worth, and understand “where you can and can’t go,” maneuvering as a rap star.
While discussing the recent call to limit the use of rap song lyrics in the courtroom, Hotboii opened up about wanting to learn more about laws and the justice system.
“That’s why you gotta know your laws too, though. I want to learn the law, though,” he said before noting that he knew a little bit. “I had security who learned his shit. He made me realize that police be trying to get over, like the shit they (authorities) was trying to do. He’ll tell them, ‘You can’t do that.’”
When asked what advice he’d give aspiring artists looking to enter the business, Hotboii pressed to know “how to move.” He added, “Don’t put yourself in no situation that you know you shouldn’t be in or around people you shouldn’t be around. Stay focused. Stay dedicated, really. It’s always work…. If you’re not doing nothing, be in that studio.”
As Hotboii looks at his future ahead, he detailed some of his plans upon his release, sharing, “I’m moving different–that’s automatic though.” As for his music, the emcee seemingly plans to remain on his path of being as authentic of an artist as possible for his fans and hopefully translate his story through his art.
Like always, if you liked what you heard, be sure to stay tuned every week for new episodes of “Big Facts.” Also, don’t forget to watch the latest show here.