12/06/2012 12:11 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2012

T.I. Talks Will Smith, Obama, And 'Trouble Man' On Nitecap With Peter Bailey (VIDEO)

By Peter Bailey

Most stars crumble amid turmoil, and then are those who rise in spite of, impervious to fame's casualties.

Enter T.I.

For him it seems tribulation is a close ally -- a questionable one, but an ally nonetheless inspiring greatness. "It's necessary sometimes to celebrate the pain, if not, the pain wins," explains T.I.

So inspired by the trouble that's become the protagonist in his rap narrative, the Bankhead superstar named his forthcoming album "Trouble Man: Heavy is the Head."

The album is a soulful ode to another troubled genius, and Marvin must be smiling down at his kindred's brother defiance to defeat.

I'm sure 2pac is happy his heir apparent is keeping hip-hop -- now painfully scripted -- authentic.

"I don't know why ya'll act surprised at my issues. I told ya'll about how I was living in my songs," T.I. explained to his fans at a recent South Beach album listening party. "Oh, ya'll thought I was making up stuff like some of these other rappers."

But these days, he's trying to unite Atlanta by making sure the young emcees he's mentoring don't share his affinity for trouble.

"When I came home that was my purpose," says T.I. "The more each of us progresses, the more the city progresses."

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