I tend to look at things just a little bit differently. Perhaps not in a sense that’s considered radical or anything, but just differently enough that it would place me in the overall ‘odd’ or ‘askew’ category in life. It never really bothered me because I didn’t even see it as something of an issue quite honestly. But looking back, it’s probably one of the the reasons why things like skateboarding, Hip-hop culture, and so many other things appealed to my senses. Things that sprung out of an ethos of ‘doing-things-MY-way’. In Hip-hop culture, it wasn’t the norm to put the needle on the record and walk away from it. It was the norm the put the needle on the record and manipulate the record in ways never before imagined. We took a regular run-of-the-mill spray can that no one gave a second thought to, and made sheer art. Skateboarding took a handrail, made to assist you in descending/climbing staircases, and said “nah, this is how were going to utilize this” and proceeded to create their own art & artists.
So whether it’s putting together an unusal outfit for yourself or making a beat like this with odd Gregorian chants, keep that creative spark about yourself because once a creative, always a creative.
Try to always find a way to “Turn s**t into sugar” — perspective is key
Unless you’re very familiar with the location of the image above, you wouldn’t know that I’m about 4 feet away from the water, by The Hudson River which lies between New Jersey & New York City. So you may ask why? Why would I have my mobile set-up out in the elements when I could easily be tucked away in my home studio… well, why not.
One of the things that has been crystallized for me even more so during this pandemic lockdown is embracing the ability to turn “shit into sugar”. As a creative, and especially as a Hip-hop beatmaker, my attention is always tuned into taking what is in front of me (a music sample for instance) and bending it to my will. As opposed to letting my surroundings fully impose its will onto me. That particular mindset has proven beneficial in these times when the world has imposed its will on ALL of us. So now, this current situation we’re all in together will either bring out the best in some of us because we’ve decided to adapt and morph into the version of ourselves that is best suited to deal with our environments. Or, this current situation will break some of us because we’re so unaccustomed to bending that when faced with challenging circumstances, we don’t bend but instead break.
So with the daily extra dose of time on my hands I’ve delved into musically exploring places I had always wanted to but argued I didn’t have the time for (as evidenced below by one of my recent instrumental songs that falls under the “Cinematic/Epic” genre), taking way more longer walks than usual, and yes, making beats by the water…
So until the day comes where we “return to normal”, I’ll be over here turning s**t into sugar.