T.I. stopped by “Jimmy Kimmel Live” and talked about his new album ‘Us or Else’, changing his name and protesting at Trump Tower.
Kimmel asked T.I. why he chose to protest outside Trump Tower on Wednesday night after President-Elect Donald Trump won the 2016 US presidential election. For T.I., making that statement was about visibility. “Nobody in their right mind can ever assume that just gathering and going somewhere and showing your incredible disdain for a decision that the nation has made that that will actually do anything immediately.”
“I voted and I’ve done everything that I could prior to now,” he continued, “but after the decision of the election happened, I just want to be able to look my kids in the eyes and make sure that they know that I did everything that the Constitution allowed me to do to show my objection to this decision.”
When Kimmel asked T.I. about his new record, ‘Us or Else’, the rapper said it is very much a protest album. “It’s protesting against police brutality. It’s in memory of all the young men and women who have lost their lives at the hands of law enforcement unnecessarily out there in the communities with no accountability whatsoever. I just really want to see the nation head in a better direction,” he said.
The pair also got on the topic of T.I. changing his name to TIP, saying, “TIP is my name, that’s my childhood name that was given to me by my father.”
Fun fact: Kimmel brought up T.I.’s birth name, Clifford, which no one calls him. “That’s my government name that absolutely no one ever calls me; judges, policemen, and bankers are the only ones.”
Initially, T.I. wanted to be called TIP, but at the time he was under the same label as fellow rapper Q-Tip, telling Kimmel, “I found myself in very good company on the same label with Q-Tip, and L.A. Reid, at the time, he felt that it was kind of confusing having two TIPs on the same label.”