Joseph Antonio Cartagena, known to the world as Fat Joe, is opening up about a trying time in his life that he says changed him forever. Ahead of the new A+E series Origins of Hip Hop, a first-look video details the rapper’s struggle with being bullied as a teenager.
In the exclusive clip shared by People, Fat Joe shares not only his experience being routinely jumped throughout his younger years but also his story about a best friend who betrayed him as a result of peer pressure.
“When I was in junior high they would bully me every day,” he says in the clip. “I’m not gonna lie, it was scary looking out the classroom window knowing that there’s 20 guys waiting to beat my a**. They never fought me fair. They would always jump me.”
Fat Joe said when his childhood friend Leonard joined in on beating him up, the Terror Squad leader told himself enough was enough.
“They was like, ‘Well if you don’t jump him with us, we’re gonna beat you … up every day, too.’ And my friend Leonard jumped me with them,” Fat Joe said. “I went home and I cried for so many hours. I had a black hoodie on, black jeans and black Timberland Chukkas. And I kept tying my Chukkas over and over again, and I was like, ‘I don’t give a f**k, I swear to God,’ giving it to everybody.”
Adding that his “heart just turned black that day,” he said, “That was the birth of Joey Crack.”
The full episode on Fat Joe’s story will premiere Monday, May 30, followed by the stories of Eve, Ja Rule, Lil Jon and more, Tuesdays at 10 p.m ET.
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