Busta Rhymes Discusses Health Decline, Near-Death Experience & More During In-Depth Interview With Van Jones

‘The Messy Truth’ covers the rap legend’s upbringing, success, and legacy.

CNN political commentator Van Jones made headlines this week after he broke down in tears while talking about Joe Biden’s victory over Donald Trump in the 2020 U.S. presidential election. Jones’s week also included him conducting a sit-down interview with Hip Hop icon Busta Rhymes.

The nearly two-hour conversation was centered around Busta’s new album Extinction Level Event 2: The Wrath of God which arrived on October 30. Throughout the video, the Brooklyn emcee spoke about his first official studio LP in 11 years, and he also commented on his personal health.

On his health decline:

I kinda just stopped giving a f### about a few things when it came to my personal well being. I just started drinking and smoking crazy and eating crazy and I got outta shape really bad and it got to the point where, I started to hear it. — I went from about 267 lbs to 340 lbs… and it felt like 340 lbs.

On having sleep apnea and his son’s fears:

I’m in the car and I go to sleep, and I’m snoring crazy. And it gets to this point where I’m trying to inhale, and I’m not able to inhale…. My son got so scared, that he spoke to the security about this fear that he had. My son was so scared how he was gonna hurt my feelings by having this conversation with me directly that he had to tell someone else to tell me. That s### f##### me up — I just felt like I was letting my son down, I felt like I was letting a lot of people down.

On having a near-death experience:

I’m like you need to tell me what the f### you’re seeing, I need to hear what’s going on…. [The doctor] says, ‘Your polyps grew so big that it blocked 90% of your breathing passage and if I send you home tonight and you sleep under the AC and catch a cold and that last 10% of your breathing passage gets blocked up…you are going to die tonight…’ I just started crying.

Extinction Level Event 2: The Wrath of God debuted at #7 on the Billboard 200 chart with 38,000 first-week units. The project included features by Chris Rock, Kendrick Lamar, Rakim, Pete Rock, M.O.P., Bell Biv Devoe, Q-Tip, Rick Ross, Rapsody, Mariah Carey, Mary J. Blige, and more.