Might as well get your ears lowered while you have the chance.
Jelly Roll spends quite a bit of time visiting inmates in jails and prisons across the country, a cause that’s near and dear to his heart after spending nearly a decade locked up himself before turning his life around and becoming a global superstar.
And the Grammy-nominated rapper-turned-country star recently spent some time at the Genesee County Jail in Flint, Michigan ahead of a show at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit. But before he left, he had a request for the inmates: He needed a haircut.
While speaking to the inmates, who were joined by the sheriff (who may have been more excited than the prisoners, but that’s probably understandable), Jelly Roll (whose real name is Jason DeFord) delivered some words of inspiration:
“Big things can happen in y’alls life. Big things can happen. I believe in y’all. I’m praying for y’all. When I leave here I’ll be thinking about y’all tonight when I’m at Little Caesars Arena about an hour down the street.”
He also promised to return to the facility and bring his band to do another show “Johnny Cash style.” But after giving back to the inmates, it was his turn to ask for a favor from them:
“I do have one request. When I leave here, sheriff, if I’ve got five or ten minutes, I’m gonna try to make it happen, can I get an edge up? Can you line me up before the show?”
Well of course Genesee County Sheriff Christopher Swanson was happy to oblige, and soon Jelly Roll was sitting in a barber chair with a recent graduate of the prison’s barber program giving his first-ever haircut to one of the biggest stars in the world.
The barber was a graduate of the jail’s I.G.N.I.T.E. Program, which stands for Inmate Growth Nationally and Internationally Through Education and has been nationally recognized for providing inmates the opportunity to earn education, degrees and valuable trade skills that they can put to use after finishing their sentence.