Joell Ortiz Shows Off Major Weight Loss, Talks Being Overweight in Hip-Hop
"I look like a different person," he tells Hip Hop DX about his transformation. Joell says he lost about 60 pounds and then added significant muscle. On Sept. 13, 2012, the Brooklyn, N.Y., native decided he would change his life. "That morning I woke up and I was tired of myself. I was tired of being tired, I made a change and I’m still changing to this day," he says. “I was living what you call the rock star life -- nightlife heavy, and diners at 5:00 or 6:00AM. I was eating cheeseburger deluxes and things of that nature and just not taking care of myself.”
Now, he works out and eats healthy. Joell has also kicked his cigarette and alcohol habits and doesn't party as much. "What’s funny though is alcohol, cigarettes and things of that nature are a high. Today, I can say those things can’t match up to a natural high. I’m actually higher now, if that makes sense, and it is incredible. I’m not trying to be that friend that is the preacher now," he shares.
He also brings up an interesting point about how being overweight can hurt a rapper's career, affecting lucrative fashion and brand deals. "Looks didn’t matter as much before as it does now," the 33-year-old rhymer says. "Looks are generating money now. When I first tried to get my record deal, I couldn’t because of my looks. [I heard], 'You are overweight. You’re Spanish.' I was like, 'Wow,' and it took me so long to not be bitter and not be discouraged. The look has changed because the money opportunities have changed, and the music industry has changed."
Along with Slaughterhouse, Joell will embark on the Glass House tour beginning on March 11 at SXSW in Austin, Texas. The trek will come to a close on April 26 at the Best Buy Theater in New York.