While conflict between competing rappers is a relatively common occurrence in hip-hop these days, it’s much more rare to see two friends air their dirty laundry in public. Well, not this week as Kanye West returned to the news for his on-stage tirade against his close friend Jay Z. We’ve all been there before; arguing and beefing with friends and family over small things. But we wouldn’t be grown ass men if we didn’t frown upon this type of behavior, and we wouldn’t be the MVP (Most Valuable Podcast) if we didn’t give you nine rules to help you handle conflict with your friends without escalating things.
One of the most difficult balancing acts in life is between our personal lives and our careers. A decision to focus primarily on work usually forces us to sacrifice our personal lives, and a decision to focus on our personal lives often leaves us without challenges in our careers. Everybody is trying to achieve the proper work-life balance, but very few actually do. In this episode, we give nine tips for achieving the proper work-life balance and also briefly speak to two of our professional friends that are working on it as well. Lots of bars in this one.
“I think its really important, especially in this day and age that people have individual thought because the collective mind is dangerous” – Rita Alva Lawson (My Mom)
This is the first installment of a short series”Thinking with Your Own Mind” Directed By me, My mother explains the origins of the album name and how she trained my brothers and I to think for ourselves and be our own people and just drops mad bars about the state of individuality in the world.
Pre Order “A Man Who Thinks With His Own Mind” HERE
A little over three years have passed since Man Bites Dog released the album Capture the Sunby Blockhead and I to much anticipation and fanfare. This album is very close to me being that it was dedicated to one of the most important and influential people in my life, my late grandmother Rev. Mable Holt-Hynes. The concept of capturing the sun is one of self-determination and vigilance. It is the idea of never giving up on your dreams or goals no matter how impossible it may seem to achieve them. It is an ongoing process that should be present throughout a person’s life. One should always be attempting to achieve something, whether it be minuscule or grand. The moment you cease attempting to achieve is the moment that you are no longer living life. You become a zombie, an empty shell of skin wasting space and oxygen.
Fast forward a year to 2014; I was contacted by Sam Weatherby aka Ill2lectualaka Tha Sound Cultivator (TSC), asking if I was down to work on some music with him. Unbeknownst to me this was the same man who had done a remix for a friend of mine, who come to find out was a mutual friend, Kristoff Krane, for the song “Parachute” that I was featured on from his Fanfaronade Remixedalbum.If you click on the link you can probably see why I agreed to do music with this man. So in order to get an idea of how each other operated we worked on a little free ep called Something in the Water. It turned out pretty good in my opinion. For me, it was an eye opener to work with someone that was a fan, but accepted me as an artist, meaning that he didn’t want me to rap a certain way or try to recapture some nostalgic feeling he got when they first heard Celestial Clockwork. He was fine with, and encouraged me doing me. It was ok that I attempted to do different styles of music, and he had no problem telling me if it was a successful attempt or if I wasn’t. It was a breath of fresh air to meet someone new that doesn’t try to put me in a box and this is why I consider him a friend today.
Here we are now in 2016, two years after Something in the Water was released: enterA Man Who Thinks with His Own Mindaccompanied by Tha Sound Cultivator. The Album is scheduled to be release on July 19th. You can Pre-order the package of your choice HERE.
The packages include:
The deluxe digital version: Includes a download of the album with the instrumentals and a PDF of the Lyrics.
The CD package: Includes a download of the album with the instrumentals and a PDF of the Lyrics, CD of the album, an 11×17 Poster (signed) and a 4×4 sticker.
The Cassette package (limited 50): Includes a download of the album with the instrumentals and a PDF of the Lyrics, Cassette of the album, an 11×17 Poster (signed) and a 4×4 sticker.
The CD & Cassette bundle package (limited 50): Includes a download of the album with the instrumentals and a PDF of the Lyrics, CD and Cassette of the album, an 11×17 Poster (signed) and a 4×4 sticker.
This is my 6th Full length LP, but it is the first time I going about this on my (our) own. No Label to foot the bill. No team to fall back on. This is all Sam and I. This and my last record deal experience is how I arrived at this album title. For the record, Man Bites Dog treated me well, but I was so focused on getting Capture the Sun on a label I failed to see what/who I had in my corner the whole time, ME. So this is my testament to that Idea. It’s a continuation of the Capture the Sun concept. Many times people, even ourselves, will try to psyche us out of reaching our potential and goals. We cannot listen to all of the noise. We have to think with our own minds.
The first single from A Man Who Thinks with His Own Mind is called “Wake Up“.This Wake up has multiple meanings, hopefully it will mean something to you.
The more that you learn and the more that you experience in life the newer you become, for better or worse. Whether you choose to or not you continue to change and grow throughout your time on this earth due to what you come in contact with. You are not the same personat 10 years old that you were at5 years old and so on so forth until the day you die.
If you listen to my music you know I talk about choices a lot because that is basically what life boils down to in my opinion.Life is a series of choices thatyou make every day based on what you have learned the days, weeks and years before that moment. Everyday choices are not always based on knowledge because it is possible that in you vast knowledge of the universe there is something that you don’t know so you make educated guesses. I say all of that to say this evolution is not a choice but how you evolve is, and that what I have found beautiful and exciting.
As many of you know I have journeyed into music production in the last month or so and it is one of the greatest decisions that I have made in a while. It is something that I have always been interested in, being deeply involved inhip hop culture and music (drum lessons, Saxophone) since I was 11 years old. I’ve sat in many studios and watched some of the illest producers create. In that time I have always had my own small collection of records just for listening purposes, but I was always catching loops or I would make a suggestions on how to freak a loop that someone I was hanging with was hooking up. I’ve always wanted to make my own soundscapes and build a true musical vision from the ground up. My problem was that I was intimidated by having to learn the equipment or programs. It just seemed hard and that it would take more of an effort than I was willing to make at that time. I was in lazy “I just wanna rap” mode and that attitude hindered my evolution in a direction of my choosing. Now that I have made that step I feel that I am discovering hip hop again for the first time, because I am looking at it and participating in it from a different perspective. Since taking on this new found endeavor I find myself listening to hip hop, and music in general for that matter, in a new way and I love it. My eyes are being opened to a new world that has been on the other side of a door that I have had the key to for many years , but I wasn’t ready to walk through it until now. The evolution of Illogic is exciting! I have a fire in my eyes again.
I say all that to say this, NEVER STOP LEARNING! Never stop finding new things to expand your palate. You can even look at things that you are already involved in and see how you can evolve in thoseareas as I did. Evolution is a never ending process of life and you evolve into who your choices and experiences dictate. So be decisive and strategic, as much as you can be, with the choices you make for your evolution.Make sure you do what you can to enjoyits direction and don’t just be a passenger of your own growth along for the ride? It’s up to you. Evolution is a beautiful thing if you make it beautiful.
Ps. If you haven’t head my Beats yet Check them out below and let me know what you think of them. Honesty is appreciated.
As many of you know I release The Remnants free last month to all of those that signed up for my newsletter. You can still get if for free if you sign up, but for all of those who want to support the movement I have put it up on my band camp For a small donation of just 9.99 you can have this music in your collection.
Thank you for your Time.
There is a special announcement coming next week!!! Stay Tuned!!!
I know it’s been an while since I gave you something new to listen to. I’ve been working hard to make sure that whatever I bless your ears with next is truly a blessing. With that being said, this summer I will be self releasing my 5th official full length album A Man Who Think With His Own Mind. It is produced by Tha Sound Cultivator (Ill2lectual). It is our follow up to the Something in the Waterepreleased in 2014. I am also finishing up another full length with California artist and producer Lucid Optics as Lucid Logic as well as working on a book of the lyrics and personal significance of all of my albums. Needless to say there is a lot in store.
In preparation for all of that as a gift to you for your continued support I offer The Remnants vol 1 (unmixed, unmastered, unreleased and barely noticed). This is collection of mostly unreleased songs that I have made at some point over the course of my 17 year career. Some of the songs were left overs that didn’t make the cut of albums. Some are unfinished. Some are rare. Some are appearances from other albums that you may or may not have heard. Some are rare or unheard remixes, poems, etc. This is only the first installment I hope you enjoy it. Please subscribe to the news letter below to receive your link. Thank you for rocking with me.
About a Year ago I did a few Shows in Cali with Bottled Water and This Guy named Lucid Optics was opening up. I was instantly drawn to is Style of production and Skills on the mic. After he got off stage I congratulated him on the great performance and asked if he would be interested in working on some music. So here we are now. Lucid Logic is born. check for the full length coming along with a few other projects that I am working on.