Pimp C:
My Way Home

XXL79PimpC1.jpgMary’s been by four times now. The first time was part of her job. Second time, too, if you’re being generous. Here at Luby’s, a huge cafeteria-style eatery just off Highway 73 in Port Arthur, Texas, the hospitality doesn’t cost extra. When Mary comes around with her pushcart to provide ice water, extra napkins, whatever, on this Thursday afternoon in early January, the offer comes from the heart.

A warm, graceful Black woman of a certain age, Mary’s also astute enough to recognize when a patron commands attention. So on her third go round, she lingers just a bit by the table of the one with diamond jewelry and a demeanor that suggests something just to the left of traditional Southern hospitality.
On the fourth lap, she leans in for the kill: “Excuse me, honey, but one of the girls here wants a picture with you.”

Pimp C, 32, is putting a knife to his chicken-fried steak. But he’s been out of prison for just 14 days now. So while being accessed is a pain, being accessible is still something of a novelty. A shy, twittering girl is brought over, and Pimp steps up from his seat, gives her a friendly hug, and poses gamely for the camera phone. He even checks the screen afterward to make sure the snapshot came out well. The eight cops seated at a table a few feet away look up, take note, and return to their meals. Pimp notes them noting him.
Six years ago, Pimp C made a mistake. During an encounter with a woman at a mall, he flashed his gun. In Texas, that qualifies as aggravated assault. Though his sentence was originally deferred, he failed to meet his community service obligations, and, in January 2002, he began serving an eight-year bid.

On December 30, 2005, after four years behind bars, countless exhortations to “Free Pimp C!” and one Houston rap explosion, Pimp C, born Chad Butler, walked out of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice’s Walls Unit and into a bright, chilly winter morning. His mom, his girlfriend and his group mate Bun B were all there waiting for him, as were a handful of fans that had come out to see his first free steps. Inmates watching the scene from behind prison fences shouted, “UGK! UGK!”

If you want to find Pimp today, look in the studio. Since his release, he’s been there almost every night, recording for guest appearances, mixtapes, or one of the several side projects he hopes to complete this year. Not to mention the eagerly awaited UGK comeback album.

“I’ve had four years off,” he says with utter gravity. “No more off.”

XXL79PimpC2.jpgThere is no good time to go to prison. “Anytime something like this happens, it’s a bad time,” says Pimp, sitting in a soft chair in his mother’s living room. “I wasn’t thinking about music or my career right then.” But for the duo he formed with Bun B more than a decade earlier, 2002 was an especially bad time to lose its musical visionary half. Pimp went away just after UGK’s fourth album, Dirty Money, hit stores. Coming off the national attention they’d received after appearing on Jay-Z’s “Big Pimpin’,” they were primed for a breakthrough.

Instead, with Pimp—who had been responsible for all the beatmaking—gone, Bun spent the ensuing years scraping. He kept the UGK name alive through a steady regimen of guest verses and live appearances, and didn’t release a solo album until last fall.

From inside, all Pimp could do was watch.

Were you concerned at all that your relationship with Bun would be compromised by the fact that you were away?
I fucked up the group. I fucked up our show money. I fucked up our guest appearance money. I fucked up our money coming from the record label. Of course I was concerned. And if you fucked with his money, it’s like you fucked with mine. He had a right to be angry.

Did you go through periods where you didn’t talk or communicate in some fashion?
The first year we talked a lot, when I was in the county. The second year, not too much—a letter here, a money order there. The third year, communications picked up a little bit. The fourth year, we got to see each other. You’ve got to realize, up until the time I left the county, in December 2002, I didn’t see Bun no more until last year. Part of that was my fault. For a long time, he wasn’t on my visitors’ list. You can’t have but 10 people on your list. I knew the man wasn’t trying to come to no prison anyway. So I wasn’t going to ask for him to come down here.

Was that hard on you?
No, not really. I knew what he was doing.

You felt okay about it?
Yeah, he was working. He was doing the best thing he could do for us. And I understood that. I knew that. He was on the grind every day. I knew how to reach him. He knew how to reach me. What was there to talk about?


“Pimp is my
man because I have been through shit with him that I can’t go through with anyone else, even if I wanted to.”

On a midweek breather between weekends packed with performances, Bun is relaxing on the couch in his crisply appointed Houston home. CNN is muted on the brand-new flat-screen TV. “It’s sad to say—and my mom’s probably going to be hurt when she sees this, and my brothers may be hurt, too—but I’m probably closer to Pimp than to my own blood brothers. Pimp and I, we came up through guns and shit on the street. Parts of my life that my mother and brothers and family would never fully understand. Parts I don’t want them to understand.”

  • http://ValdespinoMP.com LiLX aka KaNe

    welcome bacc Pimp C!!!

    texas been waitin cuzz

  • bluerid

    JUST SHOWING SOME LOVE I HOPE I WILL GET RELEASED OUT OF THIS HELL(HOLLAND)IM LIVING IN TO.RAFAELA FROM DUTCH IDOLS CAN HAVE HOLLAND AFTER IM OUT SHE FROM MY HOMETOWN SHE GOT ONE FAGGOT ASS BOYFRIEND THOUGH AND I DONT WANT THEM ANYWHERE NEAR MARSHALL BUT OK PEACE AND GODD BLESS.

  • MR. KINFOLK

    IM GLAD 2 C A TRU PIMP BACK ON TRACK MR.KINFOLK
    KEN21DALIFE@YAHOO.COM

  • http://www.soundclick.com/bioclick Dj Image

    welcome home pimp get in da studio quick shawty cuz u and bun need 2 continue holdin da south down

  • young_bleek

    im glad to see my nigga out of prison ugk 4 life, and about time yall talking about some real issues and not punk-ass, g-unit oo…my fault gggg-unot. blackwallstreet 4 life, fuck 50 snitch and tony gayo,and another thing mobb deep used to be my favorite group now they sucking 50 dick so fuck them too.. what happened to being real? mobb 6 feet deep!
    glove_state@yahoo.com

  • http://www.yahoo.com S-DUB

    Men, it’s been a lomg time since Pimp-C have been gone.Can’t wait for the UGK reunion album to be out soon. That’s love for my nigga…

  • Sade

    I want to see is he better than T.I. and Young
    Jezzy

  • Brittney

    Finally pimp c is back.Him and Bun B are one of my favorite rappers.Anyways does anyone have pics of pimp c’s family?

  • CURTIS

    PIMP C ITS GOOD TO HAVE U BACK ON THE BLOCK,HOLD YA HEAD,YALL NEED TO COME TO D.C. U GOT MUCH LUV OUT HERE,HOLLA BACK.

  • h-town represnta

    welcome home pimp!!!!!!!!!!!screwston been waiting along time for you to get back free on the block and been been holdin it down fo ya.you one of tha truest outta the H and i already know you ready to kick some thoed ass shit.keep ya head up and stay true.UGK-4-LIFE!

  • NIKO

    CONGRATS PIMP BUNS YO MAN AND NEVA LET HO ASS NIGGAS RIDE

  • Be$$emer4life

    PEOPLE ARE WAYS TALKING ABOUT RUNDMC, OUTKAST BUT THEY NEVER MENTION UGK. THEY ARE LIKE THE DOMNIQUE WILKINS OF THE RAP GAME, OVER TEN YEARS OF CLASSIC HITS. AT ONE POINT IN THERE CAREER EVERY ARTIST MAY STRUGGLE BUT NOT UGK. EVEN THOUGH SHIT WAS FUCKED UP FOR THEM, THEY CONTINUED TO DROP CLASSIC SHIT. FOR EVERY YEAR THEY HAVE IN THE GAME THEY DROP A CLASIC SONG. THE ARE NOT THE RICH RAP GROUP OF ALL TIME BUT THEY ARE THE MOST CONSISTENT OF ALL TIME. IF YOU DON’T BELIEVE ME ASK EVERYBODY FROM COAST TO COAST. FROM PREGNANT PUSSY TO DOWNSOUTH HUSTLERS COMPLIATION TO 2006 THEY STILL MAKING HITS.

  • MISS 512

    WELCOME HOME , BABY!!! WE MISSED YOU & HOPE TO SEE YOU AT THE TEXA RELAYS IN AUSTIN. OUR EARS ARE TO THA STREET WAITIN FOR SOME FIRE!!!!

  • tdc

    welcome back pimp!!!! da underground kings is back in dis bitch so its time for fake niggas to fall back.DO IT BIG SCREWSTON,TX.Much Love from a-town zone 1.

  • Kevay

    Welcome home Pimp C!!! I’ve been a huge fan for years. Your music is the bomb. My sister is deeply iin love with you and I’m head over heels for Bun. I have his name tatted on my left breast, and UGK on my arm. I love you guys. I can’t wait for the UGK new album.Much love your number one fan. XOXOXOXO

  • GuettoVaquero

    Bout Damn Time!!!

  • Coatney

    I’ve been waiting sooooo long to hear you bang the mic again! Welcome back Pimp! You and Bun are the best there is, and the best there ever will be! Put some tracks down, and show all these fools what’s really trill!!!!!!Southeast Missouri Loves yall’s shit!

  • JARREDGEE

    WHAT UP PIMPC..YOU FINALLY FREE HOMIE!!ITS ABOUT TIME. NOW THE MIDWEST IS WAITIN TO HEAR SOME MO NEW SHIT FROM YOU!!!!DONT LET THEM FAKE AZZ NIGGAZ RIDE! SOUTHSIDE MILWAUKEE IN DIS PIECE!

  • Sean

    Sum of the realest ive known and been following you all since pocket full of stones straight from Little Rock, Arkansas keep it gangsta never could buy a bootleg always will have my support just keep giving me that real trill gangsta shit

  • Niecy (GA)

    I thank God them bastards finally freed the Pimp. UGK is #1 on my list and 2006 and so on is all about UGK. Aint shit stoppin them boys now.

  • http://shaw6979yahoo.com p.a.t

    free pimp c…… welcome home pimp.by time they let the true holda of the south out. bun b really did that for ya. mad respect is due bun. normally people fade out when you are on lock. not bun. keep it real pimp.make that dirty money once again and ride dirty with supertight flows

  • http://www.fatalthot.com Fatalthot

    I would like to see the day where black people and those who embrace the culture of hip hop, rap, and everything these men (UGK for life!) represent elevate themselves into, mastering and using the English language, learning when it is ‘aight’ to use slang and when it is appropriate to speak correctly.

    Yes, this is also a direct finger pointing at those of you naming your children “Shequa- the what the fuck ever”. My grandparents were sharecroppers and they speak better than just about all of you comment posters.

    Raise up black people!

  • jason yowman

    ain’t nuthin’ f**kin’ with TEXAS!

  • http://VICHOBBSSBCGLOBAL.NET YOUNG SALVAGE

    TEXAS MADE NIGGAS HERE BOI AINT SHIT HOLDING THE LONG STAR STATE NIGGA

  • Sweet Young One

    Yo Pimp & BUN…Never lost love for UGk while u were locked up PIMP….Much love to Bun for keepin the UGK name alive!! I love all yallz work, THE UGK & Solo Albums!!!! I tell all my boys to get ur sh** and i always showin love to yall! Godbless!

  • ShowDown

    You still my favorite rapper dawg. Keep them diamonds up agaist that wood. Listen to yo “Big Momma and go to churh Chad”. Pay them tithes and you will never lose.

  • i luv pimp c

    i love u pimp c u r so hott welcom back we all missed you much love
    Rachel

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