JT of the City Girls reflected on the impacts of the time she spent incarcerated while speaking as a guest on a recent episode of the Abolition X podcast, hosted by Richie Resheda, Indigo Mateo and Vic Mensa.
“It’s really not a secret,” the Miami rapper stated. “Like I been to jail so many times. It’s like my mugshots are probably like the most viral thing about me. And people use it against me but I don’t care about that ’cause I been literally going to jail since I was like 18 but for dumb sh*t,”
Her home state of Florida holds the 13th highest incarceration rate in the U.S., reports the Florida Pheonix.
“Jail is not tailor made — like you can go to jail for any little thing,” the City Girl explained, before highlighting she didn’t know anything about warrants, needing to show up for her court dates or that mugshots are usually public records amid her early arrests.
JT began serving her sentence on credit card fraud charges in the summer of 2018 — just when she and her City Girls rap partner Yung Miami started getting mainstream success. She served over a year before being released in late 2019.
During her time on the podcast, JT said having to go away during the peak of the City Girls’ rise to the top put her in a depressed space mentally.
“It’s like I’m young, I never had anything. So when I finally get something [and I knew it was] gonna be taken away from me, it’s gonna be put on pause — not taken away — I was very depressed, very unhappy. But I worked through it,” the City Girl said.
“I feel like I got better,” the rapper said of her artistry after being released. “Going to prison and coming out gave me more edge in my music when I rap and in my voice.”
“It did put a lot of fear in me too. It put a lot of anxiety in me. It changed me completely,” JT shared. “I used to be so outspoken like I didn’t give a f–k [about] what I said. And then when I got out it was like it went from being ‘Say what you wanna say’ to ‘You say the wrong thing you on The Shade Room.’ It’s like I have to bottle up who I am to the world because [they] can’t handle who I am.”
“My whole life, I have always been painted as a rebellious person and to the point where I started to believe it,” JT shared. “If you always tell me that I’m the problem, I’m going to believe that I’m the problem. So now that I’m the problem, I’m going to be the problem.”
Hear more about JT’s time away via the Abolition X podcast below.