Tre Nyce has tasted the glory of being an up-and-coming hip-hop artist and ridden in limousines surrounded by a bevy of beauties.
He’s had friends who were gun-slinging thugs and drug-peddlers, seen his siblings and pals go to jail.
When Tre looks at his past, he sees crossroads – he could have gone either way.
“Jail ain’t cool to me,” says Tre, admitting he could have fallen into “the bad life,” if he hadn’t had a son.
“You don’t need to be like that. There is no shame in getting a 9-to-5. “
The 22-year-old Vancouver rapper, best known for writing and recording Swollen Members Armed To The Teeth album, has no qualms about pointing people in the right direction.
His recently released mixtape Kings Crusade, produced by Chef, Yung A, DJ Kemo and J Nasty, is his most personal opus yet – a 13-track lyrical, beat-driven, semi-biographical collection that pays homage to hip-hop stars Eminem and Easy-E.
“I wanted to be a more amplified version of myself,” says Tre, who has also worked with rappers Tech9, Glasses Malone and La Coka Nostra.
“Things in my life had to change and I had to grow up to be here for my son’s future. What would happen if I went to jail? When you have somebody who depends on you everyday, it makes you be at your best. It makes you change and makes your overall perspective on life different.”
It’s why Tre doesn’t mind peppering his lyrics with sneers at the gangster life style, why he doesn’t mind rapping, “I’m a Nyce guy, but I never finish last.”
He doesn’t compete with rappers, he competes with “soul writers.”
Growing up with a father who was in and out of his life, Tre has made a promise to always be there for his three-year-old son, Isaiah.
He would like to be the person help break a stereotype.
“I hope that one day we can help curb a stigma about young, black men being bad dads. I think part of my mission is to reach out to fathers – black, white, yellow –who don’t know where to go,” says Tre.
Battle Axe Records artist Tre Nyce plays Climax Night Club in Maple Ridge on Friday, Oct. 28. Doors open at 9 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance or $12 at the door and available at Club Climax, 11935 – 207th Avenue in Maple Ridge.
• To listen to Kings Crusade, click here.