Remy Ma has been through it. Even before she spent six years in prison for stabbing a woman, her life certainly wasn’t easy. In a recent interview with Fader, before she was released Remy Ma opened up about how she got her start in the rap game, how Big Pun changed her life and the people she met and what she observed while she was in prison. And then what she wants to do now that she’s a free woman. Check out a couple of highlights from the interview below.
Her arrest and adjusting to being incarcerated
Time passes, and my album comes out in February 2006. I catch this case in August 2007, and by March 2008, I’m in prison. I had been on tour; I was on the cover of the Village Voice; I was doing Us Weekly. I was doing things other artists hadn’t done a year into their careers. If you had asked me when I was in high school whether I ever thought I would end up in prison, I might have been like, ‘Well, you know, maybe,’ because I was running around being a wild child. But after I started doing music? No way. I just could not believe it.
You go from a nice house in Jersey—’Oh, my Benz is parked here, my Jeep is parked there’—to a cell where you sit by yourself and a door you can’t walk out of when you want to. Those first days, I didn’t want to hear anything from anybody. I just wanted to be by myself, but people were like, ‘So how is Jay-Z? What is this person like? Is it true that that person is pregnant?’ I wished I could just be regular and anonymous. And of course I was getting into it with people. If only you could see my list of disciplinary infractions from those days. People try you, like, ‘Oh word? She’s a rapper?’ But I met so many great people, too, and got close to so many girls here.
Developing friendships in prison
The thing is, with women, it’s different. Dudes may go in and have their girl or their crew waiting for them and coming to visit. But I seen a lot of women get abandoned. You realize that just because someone is in prison, that doesn’t mean they are a horrible person. Hearing people’s stories and the details of their trials and what they went through, you end up even closer to them than your friends from the outside. Outside, you may go out and party with your friends, or maybe you went to school with them, but you didn’t live with them or go through so much with them, being oppressed together every single day. Two months from now, it might be different, but I know there are so many girls here that I wish weren’t in here, that I wish I could take with me.
What she wants to do now that she’s out.
I want to do little stupid things that people may even be surprised about. I want to go to an amusement park. I want to get my hair done, my nails done. I want to get some Popeyes, for real. But more than anything, I want to get back in the studio. When you’ve wanted to say something for years, and couldn’t, and didn’t have that platform—that’s all I want to do. I’m not rapping about popping bottles and being in the club, because it’s different experiences. But I’m ready to go in. I want people to know Rem is back.