In the acclaimed HBO series “The Wire,” Tray Chaney’s character, the drug lord “Poot,” was a sole survivor in the sense that he was one of the only characters to appear in all of the episodes, he survived the drug game and found a life when his empire crumbled.
Now, Chaney is hitting the hip-hop scene hard, and talks to rolling out about his journey.
At the age of 8, you appeared on Apollo and garnered comparisons to Sammy Davis Jr. as well as MC Hammer. Which entertainers did you look up to as a kid, and how have they played influenced you in the work that you do today?
Wow, you took it way back. Well, I looked up to Big Daddy Kane … LL Cool J … Busta Rhymes … the leaders of the new-school movement.
They were a huge influence on me at the age of 8. I just felt because of those guys delivering real music and giving the audience a real hype, live show, it was destined for me to become a hip-hop artist no matter what, even though I’m known to the world as the [character] “Poot” from “The Wire.”
What is your book, The Truth You Can’t BeTray, about?
The Truth You Can’t BeTray focuses on how I started in the entertainment business at 8 years old as an R&B and hip-hop dancer.
… The book is about how I had to overcome certain trials and tribulations in today’s society… it’s the story of a young brother continuing to strive for my dreams no matter what. It’s to uplift young people … everything I wrote in the book is the truth. I don’t regret nothing I talked about.
Who would you like to work with in the music industry?
I would love to work with Jay-Z and Kanye West. I listen to Watch The Throne every day; I had the chance to witness the concert here in D.C. at the Verizon Center. It was epic, made me go straight to the studio and meditate.
When can we expect an album?
Right now, I’m not rushing my album I’m an indie artist so nobody is telling me when to drop or what I can put out; we’re taking our time. I got hits on iTunes such as “War,” “Make This Money,” and now the powerful record, “Fatherhood,” so we’re just creating, shooting our own videos, and going hard.