By Danielle Murray
Quay knows the cruelty of the American justice system from his own experience as a formerly incarcerated man. Read his story about how he learned crypto to co-found an upcoming play-2-earn NFT project.
T. Gustavo aka Quay was an intuitive kid. From selling candy and laser pointers to cutting yards and washing cars, he has always had a knack for business. As he entered his adolescent years, he realized that the organic experiences as a kid were just him living in “inner-city” poverty. When he noticed that he lacked the items he deemed important, he decided he wanted to take his hustle to another level and headed to the streets. Any little black boy growing up in the urban inner-city would be influenced by the hustle, the cars, the money, etc. Quay set his mind to be one of the best hustlers on his side but knew that it took money to make money.
Quay looked up to older family members growing up. His biological father had a positive influence by teaching him responsibility, accountability, and the duty of providing. His step-father, a southwest Philly OG, shared the importance of building a strong network, adapting to any environment, and the power of negotiation. His great-uncles were the ones who taught him “Da Game” and how to maneuver the streets. They also taught him the power of having strong and loyal women in your corner. Quay dedicates this to his uncles and his grandmother.
In 2019, Quay was arrested and sent to prison for drug and gun charges. He quickly realized his first few days there that prison was worse than the streets. When he was sentenced, he made a vow to read and learn as much as possible so he could transition into a legit business owner. He was already familiar with crypto due to the craze of the 2017 bull run when Bitcoin reached almost $20k. Quay had money saved from touring with King Savage and Gunna and organizing music events. In Spring ’20, he decided to buy Bitcoin with his last $24k. From this point on, he was addicted to learning more about blockchain technology and the crypto space. He bought several phones and would hide them so he could keep up with the market and learn more about how to secure generational wealth for him and his family.
Upon his release and after realizing how blessed he was to maintain strong relationships with multi-platinum artists and producers, Quay decided to take advantage of his opportunities. He began to build his network as he moved around the music industry, eventually starting his own media management company.
Quay met J. Ford through Mbye Nije, CEO of Legal Equalizer, a couple of months after being home. He was interested in Quay’s story and was willing to help him in the crypto space. With J. Ford being an entrepreneur and business owner for 15 years, the business partnership was organic. Da Game was inspired when Quay and J. Ford were in conversation about possibly developing an alternate NFT project. When things didn’t align, J. Ford came up with the idea of a play-2-earn, NFT-based game, that wouldn’t only be fun, but give real insight into the narcotics industry and the truth about the justice system. They wanted the game to show how the industrial prison complex and justice system both thrive off of people, when most of us are just trying to survive and strive for more. Whether it’s a misdemeanor for marijuana or trafficking charges for cocaine, sentences/punishments are dished out ranging from a few months of incarceration to years on probation or a life sentence in prison.
This NFT project is unique in the crypto space because it’s structured. Users will experience the everyday of being involved in the drug game, the highs, and lows that come with hustling, and the real-life experience of transcending lower ranks to becoming the overlord of their own drug syndicate. This project is supported and advised by real OG Playas and Street Legends who have lived the life. These OGs are now legitimate businessmen and women that users will be able to meet through VIP exclusive events, in addition to gameplay. Users will also be able to attend art shows, crypto and tech panels, and party with celebs, former trap stars, and upcoming business executives.
Quay says he’d tell his younger self not to take what is always given to you and to practice daily self-discipline. He says for years he couldn’t envision himself not hustling illegally and his limitations weren’t geographic, it was his mentality.
“This project is not only founded on building wealth and strategy, but it’s also to open doors and education for those who are sheltered from the power of the blockchain and crypto space. Now stay tuned for the greatest show on Earth. Peace and Love” — Quay
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