Bullet Wilson distances himself from gang life, honors his grandfather and his city
Denver's Bullet Wilson, formerly known as Kevin Pistols, has accomplished a great amount since entering the rap game in 1998, recording songs and videos with the likes of Bun B, Snoop Dogg and E-40. But after a personal epiphany and after visiting some of the biggest record labels in the game, Wilson takes on a new persona to not only help Denver develop an original sound but also to help change the social atmosphere as well and get away from the gang mentality.
The jewelry he wears is not usual for a hip-hop artist, but Bullet Wilson rocks the silver and turquoise on every finger, with a Bolo around his neck and a big silver belt buckle. This is an interesting change for him as an artist.
"I'm a veteran of a war too, You know? I'm a veteran of the American Blood and Crip war. It's the longest and bloodiest war in American history," says Wilson. "Blazing on the streets since 1970s to present day and I served from 1996 to 2010. This is a real war now, but what good is it doing anybody?"
And that's exactly what Wilson thinks has hindered Denver from developing its own sound and capitalizing on a pay day in the music game. "Until we get out from under that gang mentality Denver will never develop our own sound. Once we shake that, then we can be comfortable and creative. That's where you can create something original."
But Wilson also says the LA migration in the 1990s was one of the influences and that Hollywood played a bigger part in hyper-imposing this gang culture into kids. "It was the movies. I remember life before C.O.L.O.R.S. and after. Don't tell me half of these guys were thirteen or fourteen at their most impressionable state and break out [into gangs] after watching C.O.L.O.R.S.," says Wilson. "They were already seeing bloods and Crips now in their neighborhoods and then a blockbuster movie comes out? The handbook to it? [Laughing] That's what it is the gangbang handbook."
He says this misperception of L.A. helped push Denver into a gang culture that it was not ready for and still suffers from, "And a lot of people started doing it because they thought it was fun and they had nothing to do. And then real problems started to come from it, people started getting hurt. Once people started getting hurt, real vendettas started and Denver already had this shoot 'em up mentality," says Wilson.
"So you just bring in a little drugs, money and a structure to the wild west. You give a bunch of western outlaws some structure ...now the whole country now has a gang problem," says Wilson.