CLEVELAND - He may be the hottest musical talent with Cleveland roots on the national scene these days.
Rapper Machine Gun Kelly is back in town and sharing some thoughts on why Cleveland's success story may make it harder for aspiring musicians.
The rise of MGK, as he's called, has synced up in almost a scary way to the success of the Cavs and the city of Cleveland.
It's the story of a kid from the Heights reaching the highest echelon of an industry whose odds of success are astronomical.
On a perfect Tuesday night in Cleveland, a 27 year old rapper-turned-actor, mingles with those he knows. And he has advice for those he doesn't, those coming up behind him in the new, hip Cleveland.
"Growing up in a city like this before, it is what it is now, you're gonna leave with some edge," MGK told WKYC Channel 3's Chris Tye. "You're gonna go to Beverly Hills and be a pit bull in a kennel of poodles. I say just keep your edge."
MGK was back in town to perform at the Alternative Press Music Awards on Monday. He says a number one single, becoming a spokesman for Reebok and John Varvatos clothing, has all helped fuel a fan base that this 27-year-old from Shaker dreamt of.
"I don't know what happened when i was in Europe the last 6 weeks, something, some MGK juice must have gotten in the water," he says with a smile.
He's made the transition from music to film.
From a drug addict to a cleaner life.
And the transition of his hometown, one that showed him strong love at Forward nightclub in the Flats Tuesday night? It was evident without us asking.
"You young kids right now, I don't know if you'll have to go thru what we went through, because it's looking sexy down here in 'The Land' right now," he said.
One last note: How much of a Clevelander is MGK? He sat for over an hour on the I-71 south backup Tuesday afternoon. Tough exterior, exceptionally nice guy one-on-one.
WATCH: MGK has more to say about his time growing up in Northeast Ohio, his favorite spots, and more as he joined Chris Tye for WKYC's Facebook Live:
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