Brooklyn rapper Busta Rhymes has been around since the 1990s and is a staple of New York hip-hop. As the frontman of Flipmode Squad, comprised of Busta Rampage, Rah Digga and Spliff Star, the emcee’s quirky, fast and exciting lyrical style made him one of the most charismatic New York artists.
However, over the years, he has changed a lot and has had to battle a lot of demons to find the peace of mind he currently has. In 2020, after years of absence, the ‘Touch It’ musician (real name Trevor Smith) resurfaced with a newly-transformed body and, in an appearance on The Messy Truth podcast with Van Jones, addressed why he took a break from being in the public eye.
During the candid interview, the icon revealed that he almost lost his life from his unhealthy living. During his discussion with Jones, Smith admitted that he gained a lot of weight as a result of smoking weed, cigarettes and drinking a lot of liquor.
Smith even disclosed that he was smoking so much that during a check-up with the doctor, he was told that he had polyps developing in his throat and his ability to breathe oxygen was only at 10%. This put Smith’s life in danger as he was close to having all his air passages blocked.
Expanding on his doctors’ visit, Busta stated, “I’m like, you need to tell me what the fuck you seeing. I need to hear what’s going on! He says, ‘Your polyps grew so big that it blocked 90% of your breathing passage, and if I send you home tonight and you sleep under the AC and catch a cold, and that last 10% of breathing of your breathing passage gets blocked up you are going to die tonight.'”
Smith told Jones that his recovery was partially due to his son, who insisted that he receive professional help. The ‘I Know What You Want’ rapper explained how he began to experience sleep apnea due to his weight and unveiled that one time, he fell asleep in his car and struggled to breathe as he rose from his slumber.
Explaining how this impacted his son, Busta detailed, “I’m in the car, and I go to sleep, and I’m snoring crazy, and it gets to this point where I’m trying to inhale, and not I’m able to inhale. My son got so scared that he spoke to the security about this fear that he had. My son was so scared of how he was gonna hurt my feelings by having this conversation with me directly that he had to tell someone else to tell me.”
As a result of his son’s panic and sadness, the lyricist ended up getting back into shape and, following his recovery, began making new music. You can watch Busta Rhymes on The Messy Truth podcast below.