Recently, it came to our attention that Plies had a gold chain made for him that depicted slain teen Trayvon Martin. In the video, Plies gives a brief explanation of why he had the piece made, and what it symbolizes. But we knew we had to reach out and hear more about why the Florida rapper chose to memorialize Martin in this manner. Below is from the conversation that we had with Plies.
What can you tell us about the Trayvon Martin chain?
That was something that meant the world to me. I followed that story closely like most everybody in the country. I first started off with the Trayvon tribute record. I just did that from a sincere place in my heart. Before we even recorded we got a partnership with Atlantic Records and Slip-n-Slide Records and set it up so that all the proceeds of the record would go to the Martin family and whatever foundation they wanted. This was just a situation that, not only touched my culture but touched a huge part of America.
I’m a jewelry guy, but this is probably one of the most valuable pieces to me and close to my heart. It really touched me and I want to always remember that situation, because it really re-focused a lot of people around the country. So getting this done, this is something I always want to keep around my neck. It always reminds me of where I come from.
I told my brother and my mom that if something ever happens to me, I want them to bury me with this chain.
So it’s like a way of paying tribute and keeping the whole memory of both Trayvon and the trial and that time meant and brought attention to?
It’s a hell of a reminder. For me, when I look at the piece, it gives me courage and strength. Not only do I see Trayvon, but I see two strong parents that fought their way to the end and are still fighting today. I see Trayvon when I look at it, but I can’t even look at a picture of Trayvon without seeing his mom and dad. That’s why this is so special to me.
When did you come up with this idea?
Actually at the time I was getting something done with my jeweler. I stopped that idea. Every time I go into a new project or a new album, I try to get something that means a lot. So when I felt that impact of that whole Trayvon Martin situation, I felt like it was a great reflection of where I was and where I’m at in my life. You know, dealing with real life situations and being a part of a culture that is not understood by the majority. I felt like at that particular point in my life, from a mental standpoint I feel like Trayvon and that whole entire situation, it just represents more than a 17-year-old unarmed kid that was murdered. I feel like it represents so much more from the unfair justice system to the unity of America and coming together whether you was white, whether you was black, whether you was Hispanic. I think that was one of the few times I’ve been a part of, in my short stay here on this Earth that I’ve seen people from all walks of life come together. You still had your nay-sayers, but that’s a part of anything. It’s just one of those moments that you always remember.