I wrote this post a long time ago, a really long time ago © 2pac/Dave Chappelle
In an interview for the bro Ben Walker a while back we were talking about motives behind music, or something along those lines, and I thought it was worth writing up – I would have done so then…cept I hadn’t got off my ass to snatch the site back from it’s online kidnappers yet.
This might make it a little easier to understand why it was so easy for me to disappear out of anything resembling the public eye last year (if that’s something you care about, read on – otherwise…you’re probably at the wrong spot anyway).
It’s not something I’d ever really thought about before (probably since I’m seldom introspective unless theres a nice beat with some soul samples playing), but we were talking about the difference between rapping-for-your-damn-self, and rapping for ears/speakers/IP-addresses. Because every young rapper probably builds themselves up with the goal of getting their shit out there, and being known on the block as the baddest MC etc, you’re sorta biased as to how mean that actually is when/if you get there, but over last year I realised all I actually need to do to keep that balance and stay sane is rap some shit, maybe record it, maybe show the bro, maybe not. I don’t actually need to put anything out there to get my Stress Relief / creative release or whatever you wanna call it. You could compare it to painting (I guess), your uncle that paints a mean landscape but has never even thought of selling them, probably does it for the same reasons as the dude with the name I can’t pronounce in the gallery on Cuba.
So there I am with this epiphany running round my head, and I get to earning some nice money in my job – so now I’m good when it comes to the bills and shit, but obviously I still need rap to stay sane. But I know rap is never gonna pay me like my day job is right now, so why go through what I know from experience is a grind made outta days longer than a 9-5, with a million times less security, more respect, but less loyalty, with the possible goal of doing more of the same? The answer is I wouldn’t. But I don’t need to. If I can rap enough to stay balanced and chill, AND hold down my 9-5 and keep the rent money coming in comfortably, then for me – that’s more ideal than I thought life could be. Not having that pressure of constantly trying to make a full time job worth of money, off the full time job that is being a struggling artist, is like a scuba tank full of fresh air.
So that’s what I’ve been up to for the last year, still rapping, still venting on paper, beats, and MPC pads. Just not polishing it, or pushing and promoting it, and not really giving a fuck if anyone heard it – every song I’ve done over the last year was for me. Don’t think that means I’ve got a big azz golden Western Digital vault of tracks waiting to be released though – I don’t need my tracks to be polished, or make sense to anyone else so most of them aren’t/don’t, and probably aren’t really gonna be appreciated by you guys as a product, anywhere near the way I appreciated the process of making them, some of them will get a bit of work and make it to the EP, but now that I’ve decided to put something out there (my motives for that will probably make their appearance on another long azz post sometime soon), I’ll keep the rest of the world in mind when I’m working on new shit, and make it something you’ll (hopefully) enjoy listening to, as much I enjoyed making.
I’m off to talk videos at Park Road.