"Bush also commuted the prison sentences of John Edward Forte of North Brunswick, N.J., and James Russell Harris of Detroit, Mich. Both were convicted of cocaine offenses.
Forte, a well-known hip hop artist, worked with the Fugees, Wyclef Jean and Herbie Hancock.
Pardon orders never give a reason, but NBC News' Pete Williams reported that in Forte's case, it is likely the mandatory minimum sentences required in drug cases. Here's how fans of Forte's put it on a Web site dedicated to him:
"John Forte's life was forever changed in July of 2000. He agreed to transport a package, and in turn was arrested on a drug trafficking charge. He did not accept the plea bargain offered him, as he maintained that he was innocent of the charges against him.
"In 2001, John Forté stood trial in a Texas court and was convicted of this non-violent crime. It was his first offense. Due to the outdated mandatory minimum sentencing laws currently in place, he received the only prison term available for the judge to hand down -- 14 years in a federal penitentiary. John is not eligible to be released until he is at least 38 years old."