Riyadh: The Saudi and African American communities have a lot in common according to Mutah “Napolean” Beale, an entrepreneur and former renowned rapper from the US. Beale, who has been residing in the Kingdom for the past 12 years, said on the Mayman Show, “Saudi’s men like light-skinned black people to me. They remind [me of] people from the hood, like I can sit down with a Saudi and I can say some jokes to him. He get it. It’s like they…You know, like the blood is similar. Something is similar, you know what I mean, so I enjoy being here, man.”
Mutah has recently had a book written about his life growing up in the streets of New Jersey as a troubled youth, his time as one of the 1990’s most influential rappers in the industry and his relationship with the late Tupac Shakur, a legend in the rap music genre. As his previous book — written with the help of someone Mutah felt did not entirely grasp the environment in which he had grown up — did not shape out the way he wanted it to, the entrepreneur felt he needed the right partner in order to be able to tell his life story.
Mutah’s new book was thus written by Suleiman Jenkins.
“He’s from Brooklyn, from the hood…My grandmother was old, so she can’t really have a hand on me and my brothers, but his mother knew what was outside of the street. So, his mother made sure that education was very important for him. He went to the best schools around America, the best school board, a school to the point where he [got to the] King Fahd [University of Petroleum and Minerals]. Now he's…in charge of a whole section in John Hopkins University that he just got hired [at] about two months ago,” said Mutah.
Suleiman was the right partner for him, Mutah explained, having had a similar upbringing that facilitated understanding between the two.
“His situation is different between him and many of others in the neighborhood [because] he had a mother that kept him focused on education. So, his story reminds me that just because you’re from the ghetto doesn’t mean you have to remain there. You know, America is a place [where] you have a lot of opportunities. Opportunities, choices…So, he knew both sides. And he also written a book. Because once you leave America and you start mingling with other cultures and different people, you start to realize that when you write a book, for example, you don’t want to just touch the people in USA. Now, you got to think about how can it affect the youth of Saudi Arabia, how can it affect the youth in Africa or Asia?”
Mutah is currently a co-owner of MW Cafe in Riyadh and Smokey Beards, a restaurant serving Southwestern American barbeque.
You can view previous episodes of The Mayman Show here: https://www.arabnews.com/maymanshow