Power and the hip-hop community share a deep bond. Besides the fact that rapper and businessman 50 Cent executive produces the series, the story of struggle, crime, love, and gang life are all intertwined into the roots of rap. Rappers paint pictures of a gangster lifestyle on their records, but Power really illustrates the consequences of the streets in a way that most hip-hop songs can’t. Recently, Joseph Sikora (who plays Tommy Egan on the show) sat down with XXL and revealed his own connection to hip-hop.
Sikora explained that hip-hop in the 80’s influenced him heavily growing up. “I listened to a lot of 1980’s and 1990’s stuff—Public Enemy, Eric B. & Rakim, Boogie Down Productions, Ultramagnetic MCs. Stuff that was going mainstream, too, like Run-DMC’s Tougher Than Leather and Raising Hell.LL Cool J, Beastie Boys, Big Daddy Kane and a lot of East Coast stuff.” He also continued on to reveal that he was riding to West Coast classics as well. “I liked stuff that was coming out of the West Coast: That D.O.C. album, the stuff [Dr.] Dre was producing after N.W.A was really great. Jungle Brothers’ Straight Out the Jungle album was influential. A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul’s 3 Feet High and Rising really encapsulated that feel-good vibe.”
When asked which hip-hop act embodies Tommy Egan the most, Sikora answered the Wu-Tang Clan. “Tommy would be the Wu-Tang Clan. He is all of these different voices that make up this super-group: You have that wild ODB [’Ol Dirty Bastard], that strictly business Method Man, the guy who’s got street finesse like Raekwon or Ghostface, RZA when he breaks it down, like those slow-pointed runs where it’s Tommy talking to ’Dre like, ‘Why do I think you’re bullshitting me?’ He’s a super-group of emotion that you see wrapped up into a very fleshed-out character.”