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Lupe Fiasco's Dad Loaned Samurai Mike His Armor

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Before Brian Urlacher patrolled the middle of the Bears defense, a man named Mike Singletary held it down.

    They called him Samurai Mike because, well, he was a lethal tackling machine.

    Singletary's Bears weren't camera shy like the current squad and the 1985 team took every opportunity to market itself (think Super Bowl shuffle.)

    One marketing opportunity called for Samurai Mike to actually don samurai armor for a poster photo shoot.

    Turns out, the photographers reached out to Lupe Fiasco's dad for the gear, according to a Q&A with Fiasco on ESPN.com.

    The Life: Coming from Chicago, a town with more than one storied sports franchise, did you follow a particular sport or team when you were a kid?

    Fiasco: Oh, most definitely! I lived about nine blocks from Chicago Stadium. If I stood in the middle of the street, I could literally see [it]. I was there when we [Chicago Bulls] got our first championship with Michael Jordan. I was there for the other [five], so from that to the Blackhawks, to the White Sox when they won [in 2005].

    The '85 Bears did these stylized posters. Jim McMahon redid "Miami Vice," and they showed him in a suit with an Uzi. When they showed Mike Singletary, he was a samurai, cutting the football in half. The armor he had on was my father's. My father was a big guy, and it was the only samurai armor they could find in the city that was big enough to fit [Singletary]. So, it was that direct, a childhood story going way back, that my father's karate armor was worn by the heroes of Chicago, the Chicago Bears.

    Fiasco, your dad sounds pretty cool. And that bit of Bears history makes us even more excited to listen to your new album "Lasers," which drops Tuesday.