Freeway’s Battle Against Kidney Disease Is the Subject of an Inspiring New Film (Video)

According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), more than 4.5 million adults in the United States suffer from some form of kidney disease. Artists like Nick Cannon, Natalie Cole, and Tracy Morgan suffered and continue to suffer with kidney-related illness (also known as renal disease), and it’s a health issue which just recently dealt a serious blow to the extended Hip-Hop family. Phife Dawg passed away due to complications related to diabetes, a disease which often leads to kidney failure. In fact, Phife had a kidney transplant several years ago to help offset the harsh effects diabetes wrought on his physical well-being. Sadly, diabetes and its related renal complications continue to plague communities in which access to healthy foods, an active lifestyle, and outreach programs is often limited. On the heels of Phife’s untimely passing, another Hip-Hop icon whose battle against kidney disease has been well documented is coming forth with a trailer for a new documentary which aims to educate and encourage us all to take better care of ourselves.

freeway 3

Philadelphia MC Freeway has been releasing solo music since 2003’s Philadelphia Freeway, but his musical career was dealt a setback when he was diagnosed with kidney disease in 2015. Since then, he has remained an active participant in the fight to raise awareness and funding for research and can often be seen taking part in events like the National Kidney Foundation’s Philadelphia Kidney Walk. Having experienced life-threatening moments and an emergency stint in the hospital, Freeway has turned his efforts towards new music and a new documentary, both of which are titled Free Will. Earlier today, he dropped a trailer for the film which takes a look at his career and his personal life, with intimate glimpses into his medical issues. Of the moment he found out his diagnosis he says “It was life altering. It was devastating to me,” and he speaks openly about undergoing dialysis and how it has affected his ability to perform and tour. He laments that “in my younger days I drained so much out of the community, doing negative things…I feel I can be a good example to people just by sharing my story.”

Free Will the album arrives April 29 and is available for pre-order on iTunes. Free Will the film is awaiting an official release date.

Related: Freeway’s Soulful Mixtape Features Beats By J Dilla & A Jake One Reunion (Audio)