Monday, December 6, 2021

Yankee and the Brave

As far back as grade school, I’ve thought it would be entertaining to be a journalist of some sort. It’s just an adventure to imagine now, like Indiana Jones or Star Wars.

My favorite movie of all time is Rocky. He is a sweet, gentle, misunderstood soul who saves a cat and tries to convince a tough kid to make better decisions. He is just trying to lead the best life he can doing what he loves with the skills he has. He doesn't want to beat a creed or become the greatest anything in the world. He just wants to go the distance. He's a survivor.

The big difference is, I am a man of ideas and words, not weapons and fists. Numbers improve the machines that make weapons. Numbers fuel computers. Words make thoughts. They will always be stronger than the sword, the gun, or any weapons conceived by anyone on this world or any other.

One of the fun things about life in the 21st century is the ability for every individual to share their ideas and experiences: We are all reporters thanks to YouTube. It’s just a matter of poise, polish, and professionalism. Maybe I can live the dream!
  
Just in case, I am practicing the joy of public speaking before a mirror like Demosthenes with his shield. I am working my way through the shared opus of the poets Michael Render and Jaime Meline, beginning with R.A.P. Music and followed by Run The Jewels, RTJ2/Meow the Jewels, RTJ3, and RTJ4. I plan on blacking out the N word everywhere it appears before commencing. Fortunately Run The Jewels uses that word very sparingly. I am White, and there are rules. Gotta find a replacement that has the same rhythm like FELLA, or skip it entirely. You don't even MOUTH that word. 
The natural assumption you have about a song called "R.A.P. Music” is that it will all be about hip-hop, well it’s not. I’m talking about every music that’s been born on this continent from a group of people that were brought here in chains. That music that gave them hope. It gave them a way of communicating. It gave them laughter. It gave them passion. My people have given a great amount to the culture of this country and I wanted my predecessors to know how much I appreciate them. That’s what R.A.P. Music is.
-Michael Render, a.k.a. Killer Mike
by Michael Render
I've never really had a religious experience, in a religious place. Closest I've ever come to seeing or feeling God is listening to rap music. Rap music is my religion. Amen.

What I say might save a life, what I speak might save the street
I ain't got no instruments, but I got my hands and feet
Hands gonna clap and feet gonna tap, El-P beats to make that snap
And I ride 'em with my raps and they all tight as my naps
And my naps is all I got and this beautiful ebony skin
And the music in my heart and the words put in the wind
And the words put in the wind comin' back like a boomerang
When I take this microphone, point it at the crowd, they start to sing

This is jazz, this is funk, this is soul, this is gospel
This is sanctified sick; this is player Pentecostal
This is church; front pew, amen, pulpit
What my people needin'? The opposite of bullshit
This is jazz, this is funk, this is soul, this is gospel
This is sanctified sick; this is player Pentecostal
This is church; front pew, amen, pulpit
What my people needin'? The opposite of bullshit

It's that Robert Johnson, that Muddy Waters
That James Brown, Augusta, Georgia
That Ray Charles, that Stevie Wonder
That Mayfield, that Superfly
That Willie Hutch and that Mack
It's that blues man, that soul man
That OutKast, that Southernplayalisticadillac
It's that Jimi Hendrix, that George Clinton
I feel it in my bones
Aretha Franklin, that Shirley Caesar
Miss Nina Simone
That Sade, that Love is King
That Coltrane, that Love Supreme
That Miles Davis, Bitches Brew
That "beeeyotch" said by Playboy Too

This is jazz, this is funk, this is soul, this is gospel
This is sanctified sick; this is player Pentecostal
This is church; front pew, amen, pulpit
What my people needin'? The opposite of bullshit
This is jazz, this is funk, this is soul, this is gospel
This is sanctified sick; this is player Pentecostal
This is church; front pew, amen, pulpit
What my people needin'? The opposite of bullshit

I got things to do, before I meet that glory in the sky
And my baby girl b-day six months away, she gonna be five
So I pray to the Lord he spare me, and I make it by and by
And I help souls stay out of Hell with what I testify
And maybe when I grab that microphone and never lie
That'll merit that he spare me, I won't have to feel that fire
So Killa Kill gonna spit that real on each and every song
And each and every poem, until the good lord call me home, gone!

This is jazz, this is funk, this is soul, this is gospel
This is sanctified sick; this is player Pentecostal
This is church; front pew, amen, pulpit
What my people needin'? The opposite of bullshit
This is jazz, this is funk, this is soul, this is gospel
This is sanctified sick; this is player Pentecostal
This is church; front pew, amen, pulpit
What my people needin'? The opposite of bullshit

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