The rapper Shyne, who served nine years for an infamous 1999 nightclub shooting incident, is making a media splash with big interviews on his new turn as an Orthodox Jew. That's right—born Jamal Barrow in Belize and raised in Brooklyn—Shyne has legally changed his name to Moses Levi and is living in Jerusalem. He told the NY Times, "My entire life screams that I have a Jewish neshama [soul]," and said to the Jerusalem Post, "I’m a guy that has simcha [joy] and kedusha [holiness] in a prison cell with rats running - and walking - around."

Shyne, who is releasing a new album next year, was deported because he never became a U.S. citizen during his time here (he's trying to get citizenship with a plea to Governor Paterson), explained to the Times being an Orthodox Jew amid the blingy rap lifestyle isn't discordant, "There’s nothing in the Chumash that says I can’t drive a Lamborghini," and "nothing in the Halacha about driving the cars I like, about the lifestyle I live." He discussed the 1999 shooting—which became a tabloid sensation because he was with mentor Puff Daddy (as Diddy was known back then) and Puffy's girlfriend Jennifer Lopez—he says he was shooting in the air to break up the dispute (but didn't address whether he took the fall for Diddy, who was cleared of charges). Shyne further described the situation to the JP:

“Someone shot at me outside a studio about a month before the nightclub thing, and I got a gun. It was a terrible mistake, but I had post traumatic stress disorder...

“So 30 days later, I’m in the club with Combs and [then-girlfriend] Jennifer Lopez and there’s an argument between him and this guy, who I knew for a fact was a stone-cold murderer from Brooklyn. I knew there wasn’t going to be too much talking before he pulls a gun out. The next thing you know, someone who was with the guy from Brooklyn pulls the gun, and I was just defending myself.”

Shyne also said he liked Orthodox Judaism for the order: "All these rules, rules, rules. But you know what you have if you don’t have rules? You end up with a bunch of pills in your stomach. When you don’t know when to say when and no one tells you no, you go off the deep." Here's video of him speaking with the JP: