Saturday, December 15, 2012


With all going on with my Mad Skillz class and upcoming show, I was reminded of a good story today from  when I was in 10th grade Biology class.  Guns N' Roses' Use Your Illusion records had just been release, Pearl Jam was all over the radio, and Nirvana had a huge buzz all over school.  I, however, was rockin' my 1988 DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince He's the DJ, I'm the Rapper tape in my Walkman.  Since rock was the mainstream at the time, I of course would be liking something that nobody was into which was rap. 

The first cassette I ever bought on my own was DJJJ+FP's"And In This Corner..." right at the end of 8th grade. I adored that record (and still do) so a couple of years later, I was checking out their back catalog.  The first time I heard the title track, I was blown away by how complex and hard hitting the rhyme flow was.  I bumped that record constantly from the summer into the 10th grade.  I wrote a ton of rhymes on my textbook covers trying to do something similar to what they were doing.  I lived, breathed, and recited that record all of the time - in between classes, at lunch, when I got home.  It gave me the reinforcement to pursue music as a performance medium.

There was this guy in class Colin who LOVED to torment me.  I was his favorite guy to pick on during that class.  I was nerdy, not popular, and different enough to not fit in.  So, the daily ritual went as follows:
  • I'd show up to class 5-7 minutes early. Colin would already be there.
  • I'd put on my headphones to block out everyone else and get a little bit of solace before class began.
  • Colin would see me and get together with his buddies in class to call me names and threaten me.
  • I'd appear to ignore them but would listen to every word they were saying.
  • After class started, everything would be fine until about the last 2-3 minutes where we'd start packing up to go to our next class.  I'd think about all of the things I should've done in retaliation.
After weeks of this routine, other people in class would start sticking up for me at times and would make an effort to reach out.  I kept bumping these songs ad nauseum  and bega  writing my battle rhymes in the event we ever met in a court of music.  I would anihilate the dude not with fists but with words.

At our high school reunion,  I kind of hoped I would run into the guy just to see how he was doing.  He didn't go (at least I don't think he did) but I had some of those battle rhymes stuck in my heads.  I was going to thank him for being a dick all of the time back in high school.  If it wasn't for him, I wouldn't have practice my craft so much.

I feel I have gained a leg up from that experience with free-styling and song composition.  Can't wait to use that past pain to fuel my future happiness.