Among those first to greet B.G. — real name Christopher Dorsey — was rapper and hip-hop mogul Birdman, who recruited him and Lil Wayne as tween protégés at his Cash Money Records in the early 1990s. The two could be seen chatting with smiles on their faces while surrounded by other supporters before dapping it up and embracing, according to video from Birdman’s Instagram Live that was shared online Tuesday.
In July 2012, Dorsey was sentenced to 14 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to two counts of possessing a gun as a felon and obstruction of justice. For the last 11 years, Dorsey had been incarcerated at the Federal Correctional Institution in Herlong, Calif., a small, remote town along the Eastern Sierra Nevada mountains.
“It’s my last #Birthday being buried alive,” the 43-year-old wrote Monday on Instagram, teasing his release.
“The main focus, is to stay focused,” he continued. “I’m not letting nobody rob me of my productivity, prosperity, positivity and peace of mind. My dreams then got bigger and my vision is clearer. 13 years was more then [sic] enough time for me to change the reckless path I was on.”
Bureau of Prisons records suggest Dorsey’s release may have been ahead of schedule. His original release date was scheduled for July 2024. It was not immediately clear what led to his early release.
However, Dorsey, with the support of some high-profile names, including Birdman, had been working to get his sentence commuted in 2022, according to court documents obtained by The Times. Those who wrote the court in support of a reduced sentence include Birdman (real name Bryan Christopher Williams), NBA Hall of Famer Gary Payton and former music executives and talent managers.
A federal judge ultimately denied Dorsey’s request for compassionate release, saying that the rapper had “not shown extraordinary and compelling reasons warrant a reduction in sentence.” In response to a later motion, documents show, the court said Dorsey hadn’t showed any “new evidence that would affect the Court’s prior decision.”
As news of B.G.’s release spread online Tuesday, many in the hip-hop community began to celebrate, including Houston rapper Bun B, one half of the rap duo UGK. The rapper shared a screenshot of a FaceTime call with B.G. and Birdman.
“The call we been waiting for!” Bun B wrote on Instagram, teasing a Hot Boys reunion. “@birdman hit me up to show me [B.G.] is a free man! This put a smile on my face! God is great! Hot Boys reunion coming soon!”
Hot Boys formed in the 1990s with B.G., Lil Wayne, Juvenile and Turk recording a platinum album together in 1999 with “Guerrilla Warfare.” After the group dissolved in the early 2000s, the artists went on to solo careers.
Though most of the group stayed attached to Birdman and Cash Money, some artists, most famously Lil Wayne, later had a falling out with Birdman, leading to a $51-million lawsuit in 2015.
Wayne alleged the label had withheld substantial payments for his serially delayed album, “Tha Carter V,” and that Birdman, whom he called “a surrogate father,” had also exploited other artists such as Drake and Nicki Minaj. Lil Wayne settled with the record label for an undisclosed sum in 2018.