Flesh-N-Bone: Unbreakable

He has spent the better part of the millennium stuck inside a six by nine cell, held behind cold walls and dealing with conditions that could break even the strongest man’s spirit. Coupled with the fact the group he helped elevate to superstar status had broken apart at the seams, one wouldn’t blame Stanley “Flesh-N-Bone” Howse for living life with a sense of bitterness. However, what would have broken a lesser man only made the Cleveland native stronger. While the Bone camp may have been dealing with turmoil on the outside, Flesh was formulating a master plan on the inside. On July 13, 2008 that plan was finally put in motion. After spending almost a decade behind the walls, Flesh walked the world a free man. With the other four remaining Bone members there to greet him, Flesh and his comrades wasted no time doing what they do best and hit the studio. In '94, Flesh was the Bone who bought the bus tickets that began Bone’s historical run in the game. Fourteen years later his release has spearheaded a new sense of unity and resolve between the Thugs that hasn’t been seen for quite some time. For the first time since his release Flesh has broken his silence for an exclusive interview AllHipHop.com. Pay heed. AllHipHop.com: Try and put into words the feeling you had when you finally were released from jail after almost ten years on the inside?Flesh-N-Bone: Words can't even begin to explain the feeling that I had after being locked down for damn near a decade. The best way for me to describe it is to tell you that it was like a rebirth, a second chance at a new life, and a relief. It was over the top. I'll never forget it. I thank God for giving me the immense blessing of the sense of complete freedom.Bone Thugs-N-Harmony "Foe The Love Of Money" VideoAllHipHop.com: Jail is certainly not the spot anyone wants to be at, but was there anything positive you were able to take out of your bid?Flesh-N-Bone: Looking back, I can tell you that I was definitely able to extract a lot of good out of the experience of being in prison. That's not to say that it wasn't complete hell and torture but my incarceration was like a major blessing in disguise. It was something that left me with not much choice but to open up myself to realizing that I had to accept, deal with, and get rid of every last one of my shortcomings in order to make myself better as a human being. Taking on the responsibility of owning up to everything that I did wrong in my life up to the point that I was incarcerated and then correcting it all was no easy feat but it was definitely necessary in order for my life to get better. That's what being in prison did for me and looking back, I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world.

“We have all perfected our God-given gift and we have matured as men and as artists to the point where we are able to relate to the human struggle even more now than we ever have before and create music that is relevant and inspiring to all walks of life.”

AllHipHop.com: Describe the feeling of finally getting back into the studio and how important it was that it was with the rest of Bone?Flesh-N-Bone: My music is my career, it's my craft and my passion. Being kept away from really being able to produce my music at the level that it needed to be done made me all that much more grateful and anxious to be able to hit the studio. The fact that all five of us founding members of Bone were in the studio together was of monumental importance too. We all had to be there. There was gonna be no way around that. That was very important to me, to the rest of Bone, and I think that it was just as important to the fans as well. It's more than a blessing to have the opportunity to record again at that magnitude together with the entire group. Another reason why it was so important for us to be as productive as we have been since my release from prison is because we were written off by so many people who we thought were in our corner. It's not hard for us to tell if the intentions of industry folk toward us are for the sake of our benefit or not. You have to understand that people thought that it was impossible for us to get back together and they questioned whether we still had the ability to create and deliver. Throughout our individual struggles during the past decade, we have all perfected our God-given gift and we have matured as men and as artists to the point where we are able to relate to the human struggle even more now than we ever have before and create music that is relevant and inspiring to all walks of life. It's important for us to vindicate ourselves of the unfairness and the lack of respect that has been directed toward us. Being back working this way, together, is important because it sends the message loud and clear that we are still here, still standing strong, and still willing to weather any battle or storm. AllHipHop.com: In ’94 you were the one who bought the bus tickets to L.A. that started the whole Eazy-E and Bone connection that really got things rolling. Fourteen years later your release from jail seemed to bring the group back together. Talk about the parallels about the start of your career to now.Flesh-N-Bone: There are many parallels between 1994 and 2008. I'm taken aback by how history repeats itself and I'm grateful to have the same feelings of strong determination, noble aspirations and unshakable will power. I thank God for instilling in me this gift to remain diligent and hungry for improvement. There is absolutely nothing in God's creation that I don't see us being able to accomplish and that feeling still remains strong. I had the dream of being able to help us get to the level where we could share our craft with the entire world when I bought those tickets. Thank God that through diligence and hard-core faith and work the dream actually became a reality just like the dream of us reuniting also became a reality.

“We're not at liberty to discuss any release dates at this point but when the new album finally drops, the fans can expect to enjoy that

innovative and legendary Bone Thug music...”

AllHipHop.com: How has the vibe been in the studio with all five Bone members finally back together?Flesh-N-Bone: So far, the recording process has been greater than all five of us could ever have fathomed. We have far exceeded our own expectations in all this. We are reaching new heights of perfection. These days our vibe is more powerful and miraculous than it was when we first started it off as teenagers. We're literally musical composers and lyrical technicians. We're not at liberty to discuss any release dates at this point but when the new album finally drops, the fans can expect to enjoy that innovative and legendary Bone Thug music that has always been known to raise the bar and set the standard. Flesh-N-Bone "World So Cruel" VideoAllHipHop.com: There has also been word that you guys are working on a reality show. What’s the word on that?Flesh-N-Bone: The reality show has been going great. Even in its production stages it's amazing to see how much demand there is for it already. What we wanted to do with this project was to give the world an inside view on the exclusive lives of Bone Thugs-N-Harmony. The show is about living in harmony. It's also about how we deal with and solve conflict, how we cope with the hard times, and how we take what goes on in our lives to use as fuel for our creativity. This project is one that other families from all walks of life all over the world can relate to. We want to show that we share in the same struggles as everybody else living this life. What we also want is for others to be able to extract and gain from our lives and our experiences. Our lives are examples of how it doesn't matter what kind of a background you come from because everyone has the ability to rise from the trenches of less favorable conditions and accomplish greatness. We want to give everyone out there our formula of success so that they can gain whatever it is that is meant for them to gain from it. Fans will get to see what makes us tick and what makes us who we are as artists and individuals. Bone Thugs-N-Harmony will once again raise the bar and set the standard in this business with the release of our reality show. AllHipHop.com: What’s been the most surprising thing you’ve encountered since your release from prison? Flesh-N-Bone: The most surprising thing that I have experienced so far since my release has been the amount of love and support that the fans have given me and the rest of Bone from all over the world. We have received love from people from literally every corner of the globe from the tiniest countries in Africa all the way to top executives in the industry in Hollywood. It's exciting to see how the projects that we're putting all this work into have turned into the most highly anticipated projects ever. AllHipHop.com: Is there anything you and the group have in the works besides the new Bone album?Flesh-N-Bone: Right now we're working on a whole arsenal of projects besides the new Bone Thugs album. Just to give you a few, we have the reality show, we have our solo projects, we're working with film executives to further our aspirations on the big screen, and we're also expanding our entertainment base to the Internet which will include never before used technology. Our fans really deserve the best and we're going to stop at nothing to provide them with nothing less than that.

“We're not interested in putting forth anything that isn't going to help, motivate and inspire others in a positive way.”

AllHipHop.com: You guys have gotten back together only to break up again in the past. Why should fans look at this reunion differently and not expect that to happen again?Flesh-N-Bone: We have separated in the past mainly because of the fact that we had to experience our own individuality but that never meant that Bone Thugs-N-Harmony didn't exist anymore. It was just all part of the master plan by which we matured and evolved into who we are today. What's different about us getting back together now is that we have learned how important it is to strive to stick together and keep it strong. There's something unmistakable about us when we're together and we realize that now more than ever because this last separation was the most difficult one that we have ever been through. We all went through the hardest times of our lives during the past decade but we learned from our mistakes. Without the mistakes and the hard times we would not have became the men that we are today. AllHipHop.com: Any last message you want to put out there for the fans?Flesh-N-Bone: What we want to convey to all the fans is that we have all the love in the world for you all. The feedback that we always receive is about how we have touched other people's lives through our music. That means the world to us because that has always been our aim. We're not interested in putting forth anything that isn't going to help, motivate and inspire others in a positive way. I can't even begin to tell you how grateful we are to have been able to accomplish our mission in that sense. Throughout all of the years our fans have thanked us time and time again for how much we have helped them through the worst times of their lives but what we want all of them to know is that the pleasure will always be ours. Flesh-N-Bone "Player Hater (Live)" Video