Bronx legend Fat Joe came on the scene as a large-bodied, aggressive youngster who regularly hit the charts with brazen arrogance as the leader of the Terror Squad. However, the lyricist (real name Jose Cartagena) had a reason for his anger.
Fat Joe grew up in the Bronx at a time when New York City was known for being tough and hardcore. As such, he grew a hardened exterior at a young age. He was raised in the Forest Houses housing projects and, before fame, had a lot of run-ins.
That said, as a hip-hop veteran who’s been in the game for 30 years, Fat Joe has many stories to tell and during an Instagram Live discussion with his close friend, former Terror Squad member Tony Sunshine (real name Antonio Cruz), the two artists reflected on the unfortunate occasion they almost got killed by infamous Mobsters in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
Detailing the story, Cartagena explained that the late Big Pun had invited both him and Tony Sunshine to perform at the Puerto Rican Day Parade in Bridgeport. According to Fat Joe, When the Terror Squad arrived, they were “treated like kings” by local kingpin Frankie “The Terminator” Estrada and his crew.
Unfortunately, things went horribly wrong when Terror Squad member Cuban Link flirtatiously offered Estrada’s wife a drink. Unveiling this, Cartagena detailed, “The main kingpin who’s treating us like a king, he got his wife with him, the Nana. He won’t let go of her hand. He’s one of those dudes madly in love with his girl. The guy accused Cuban of trying to fuck his girl or whatever.”
In response, Cuban Link allegedly punched the man, sparking a massive fight in the club that left Fat Joe and his crew outnumbered. “I think Cuban punched him in his face. He knocked him out!”
Fat Joe continued, “Now we go from Puerto Rican Parade to 5,000 guys in the club jumping us. It’s, like, 10 of us against 5,000 guys. We got our ass whooped! Listen to me, we got our ass whooped! I don’t know how we’re alive!”
Cartagena admitted that after the fight, Frankie Estrada ended up seeing him and held him with a gun to his chest. Concluding his tale, the ‘Lean Back’ emcee wrapped up, “When I go to walk [out], I open the door; this dude is standing in the trunk of a car — this is no exaggeration — he pulled out a Derringer silver gun!” However, he eventually let him go.
You can listen to Fat Joe and Tony Sunshine speaking about their Bridgeport mobster tale in the video below.