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T.I. Reunites With Man He Saved From Suicide

Rapper also talks about public perception of his forthcoming return to prison

October 19, 2010 12:15 PM ET

T.I. reunited with Joshua Starks, the man the rapper helped talk out of committing suicide, on the Ryan Cameron Show on Atlanta's V-103 yesterday. T.I. talked about his role in convincing Starks not to jump from a 22-story building, gave advice to fans who find themselves in a similar predicament, and how the public has responded to him after he was sentenced to an additional 11 months in prison following his drug-related arrest last month.

"The public would rather see you suffer than see you shine," T.I. said, alluding to rumors that his role in Starks' attempt was a publicity stunt. "Although my actions have been unacceptable, inexcusable, I don't see them as unforgivable." Even though T.I. will return to prison within in the next two weeks, he's remaining positive. "We all move forward and all of the things we go through in life, they just prepare us for the next battle," T.I. said.

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Starks, meanwhile, revealed that he was going through his own problems — including legal difficulties, like T.I. — when he was contemplating suicide, but the rapper convinced him that jumping from the building wasn't the answer.

"What I realize is now I just need to put forth that extra effort that I thought wasn't there, that I now know is there," Starks said.

"Minimum injury, maximum lesson learned," T.I. said of Starks' situation. As for advice he'd give to his fans facing similar struggles, Tip said, "It gets better, if you're willing to put in the time, the effort, the energy into making it better, or if you're willing to lay back long enough to allow it to get better, it can and will get better. But if you interfere with that process by removing yourself permanently from the circumstance or the situation, then you don't allow it to get better. You got to be present to be blessed."

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Song Stories

“Santa Monica”

Everclear | 1996

After his brother and girlfriend both died of drug overdoses, Art Alexakis -- depressed and hooked on drugs himself -- jumped off the Santa Monica Pier in California, determined to die. "It was really stupid," said the Everclear frontman, who would further explore his personal emotional journey in the song "Father of Mine." "I went under the water. Then I said, 'I don't wanna die.'" The song, declaring "Let's swim out past the breakers/and watch the world die," was intended as a manifesto for change, Alexakis said. "Let the world do what it's gonna do and just live on our own."

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