In the early outlaw '80s, Freeway Ricky Ross turned crack rock into an interstate empire. Based out of Los Angeles, he cooked up megakilo after megakilo, packaged that weight, and trafficked it to every corner of the country.
He traveled with a thug army equipped with Uzis, AK-47s, and Glocks. And at the height of his hustle, Ross pulled in stacks of greenbacks so huge -- often $2 million per day -- that he had to hire an entire staff of 24/7 money handlers just to feed his collection of electric cash counting machines.
Inevitably, the crack-slanging L.A. drug legend got busted. But even sitting in federal prison for two decades, he spawned one of hip-hop's most potent current myths, inspiring the street names of both Carol City's William Leonard Roberts II (AKA Rick Ross) and South Philly spitter Leslie Edward Pridgen (AKA Freeway) -- not to mention a million rap odes to making money fast and blowing it even faster.
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Get a headful of gangsta fantasy next Saturday when Freeway holds it down as part of the Rising Hip-Hop Series at Transit Lounge. You'll know the spot by the sweet chemical smell and the click-clack of cash being counted.
Freeway with Opio, Musab, Prince Po, Wrekonize, OneBeLo, J Nics, and Mr. Chief as part of the Rising Hip-Hop Series. Saturday, March 12. Transit Lounge, 729 SW First Ave., Miami. Doors open at 8 p.m. and admission is free before 11 p.m., but $10 afterward. Ages 18 and up. Call 305-377-4628 or visit transitlounge.us.