WINTER 2017 \\ NO. 10
YOU ARE NOT ALONE: EXPOSING POC STIGMAS ON MENTAL ILLNESS GLOBAL THOUGHTS: WORLD CLIMATE SHAKES SOCIAL CONFIDENCE FREAKISH GETS GEEKED! PROPHECIES OF 2018 “FOR THE CULTURE” WINS AND PERSONAL GAINS IT’S ANTI-CUFFING SEASON: SULTRY EGO’S AND SENSITIVE THREADS WINTER-ISH FASHION SPREAD
SURGE ISSUE INTERVIEWS W/ ± SHUN MILLIONS ± ROB RANDOLPH ± RENZ YOUNG
namaste from our editor
issue ten: the surge issue
say less w/ shun millions
mental illness: you are not alone
respect the shooter w/ rob randolph
adding it up w/ renz young
g l o b a l t h o u g h t s : i t ’s g e t t i n g h o t i n h e r e
anti-cuffing season // winter fashion
a very freakish 2018
A B O U T O U R F E AT U R E D C O V E R A R T I S T ––
ROB RANDOLPH M I LWAU K E E N AT I V E P H OTO G R A P H E R & V I D E O G R A P H E R LOV E S H I S C A N O N 7 0 D A N D i PA D F O L LOW H I M @ R O B R A N M K E R E A D M O R E A B O U T H I M O N PAG E 1 5
E D I TO R - I N - C H I E F / L E X I S . B R U N S O N C R E AT I V E D I R E C TO R / C A R S Y N TAY LO R S H O OT E R / M A H D I G R A N S B E R R Y FA S H I O N E D I TO R / VATO V E R G A R A
S P E C I A L T H A N K S TO / K E LV I N “ DAY N AG E ” C R O S S
N ATA L I A M O R Y N S
THE STYLE HUB TEAM
J OJ I I N A N E T T E
O U R C W FA S H I O N M O D E L S
L AU R E N “ H O N E Y ” G R A N I E L A
G A R A H B R I E W E S L E Y-J O N E S
B R E N T FA I YA Z
C A R LO S C O R T E Z
C H A R L E S M C C OY
R E N Z YO U N G
T H E C I T Y O F M I LWAU K E E
CopyWrite Magazine Media & Design, LLC currently runs as a Milwaukee-based organization. All images are not licensed or owned by CopyWrite. For any questions regarding photos, future advertisements, future employment or any information about any featured artists, producers or creators, please contact us at email@example.com.
LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
I S S U E
T E N
NAMASTE FROM OUR EDITOR. A few months back I wrote a blog post about seasons changing. Where there was indeed a change in the earth’s axis tilting in relation to the sun, there were other changes far more symbolic on my mind: ‘We are changing. Every minute and every moment we are making decisions that in the long run matter. When we look back on the road that has gotten us to this point, we are either inspired by our success or tortured by our shortcomings...either way both lines of thought make us who we are.’ Those words have been following me since then. Every conversation had, every news report viewed, every timeline scrolled, every decision being made (personally or interpersonally), there is a constant observation of something out of the norm. Something eerily different. There has definitely been a change of seasons, a paradigm shift in the social construct of our world. Who are we as a civilization, and where are we headed? It all just seems so unknown. I’m not quite sure if it’s the power structure (world leaders and their personal agendas), mother nature screaming at the top of her lungs (have you not been paying attention to her warning signs?), public discrimination becoming way less “covert” (“We are not our grandparents”...y’all know the rest), or is it just we have finally said ‘F*ck it to humanity’ (It’s every man, woman, and child for themselves! I gotta get mine!).
Whatever it is sure would make one hell of a script to a telenovela. (Ha! & I would know. Have you seen my life?!?) This shift is not necessarily a bad thing, but a moment to reflect, change route if needed, and come up with solutions for challenges we would usually avoid. Issue Ten’s birth in this time of change and unknown is highly significant from my view. Ten is the Pythagorean symbol of perfection or completeness (I hate the word perfect). Ten to the Mayan’s stood for the end of a cycle and the beginning of another. Ten is also said to be the representation of the currents of consciousness: involution and evolution. Ten is strong. It has always been the number to strive for. So now we are here; we can say we have done it. We can say it is complete. The legacy will be perfect and untainted if we just let go…at “Ten.” But who wants to be perfect? The flaws of this world are what have made us survive. The need for more rawness and in your face media with an appreciation for culture is what makes us keep going. Even everything that we have experienced (like our own dramatic encounters) give us just a little more bite and a lot more ego with a bigger punch when our backs are against the ropes (It’s that Tyson mixed with Ali perspective). I’m getting wordy and allusive really just to say this... With change comes resistance, revolution, revelation, and reminders. It is beyond us and it will move with or without us. How will we change the narrative? How will we flip the script? The challenge is to be ready for a good fight and define history by our own accord. As uncle Nas would say, ‘It Was Written.’ /Dirty
SURGE ISSUE NO. 10
SHOOTER: ROB RANDOLPH
(NOUN) A SUDDEN POWERFUL FORWARD OR UPWARD MOVEMENT, ESPECIALLY BY A CROWD OR BY A NATURAL FORCE. A dangerous time has come. One where cut throat “doers” and half-stepping “sayers” move in tandem. The symbiosis has become destructive and what will happen next is unknown. A push for understanding in a time that lacks clarity, urges the gatekeepers of the creative movement to awaken from their docile state and shake the world like an earthquake, drown the doubters like hurricanes and put fear in the hearts of man like wild fires…”They” can no longer be controlled.
In this issue, we document the defiance of young (but invasive) cultivation, the strategy to sustain vetted ranks with the willingness to train new recruits and the vantage point of the shooter who exposes the battle as it unfolds. It also challenges social responsibility and stigmas that annihilate our forces before we even become active. As the shift in the world confidence becomes startling, we use our culture as a forcefield, barricading us from the reckless and corrupt. Opening up seats at the table, we ask for the strong willed to join our ranks. There is no longer room for the undecided, so choose up.
THIS IS THE SURGE.
SHOOTER: DALLAS THOMPSON
-SAY LESSSNAPSHOT INTERVIEW WITH $HUN MILLION$
PROFILE Age: From: Government Identity: AKA: Rap Name: Mystery Trait: Snacks of Choice: Shun’s Slept On Track:
21 San Diego, California (But reps 414 as his second and most influential home) Dashun Washington Shun Mendez (Deriving from his celebrity crush, Eva Mendez...LMAO) $hun Million$ (Because he learned he can do a million things) Lover of Botany #PlantLife Reese’s, Toaster Strudels, and Pop Tarts (In case you need to bribe him one day) Bear Claws & Brown Mulch, inspired by CopyWrite *Inside Joke*
The scene is thriving and young artists are popping up out of the dirt, growing names for themselves in a place where not too long ago, there was no ability to gain shine. Read on to see how one local rapper is budding by doing more, so you can “Say Less.”
SM: “My first song was on a cassette tape.” At the age of 7 or 8 Shun was already spitting rhymes, even in the form of love songs. Using his jazz artist grandfathers equipment, he and his brother would record his young thoughts creating a lasting impression on who he is today. SM: “I always loved rappin’. My big brother tells me till this day that he, ‘Never met a kid our age that was able to rap a whole song and say exactly what makes sense in the right [way].’ He still has that cassette tape till this day.” SM: “There would be times I would write my favorite songs lyrics. It was hilarious, but it helped me [learn] to write though. I remember one time I wrote out Mos Def’s ‘New World Water’ lyrics on paper. I was like ‘Yo’ Ma check this out’ and she thought it was me the whole time. I remember she had me show the family… it was weird because they were like ‘That sounds too familiar’. I thought I’d get away with that but Moms was like, ‘It’s okay he still can rap. Rap us something else.’ So she always pushed me to keep going too.” Shun believes that his mother’s support (teaching him to take on constructive criticism and use an open mind) is one factor that has allowed him to gain love and grow a fanbase in MKE. SM: “As soon as I started to listen to the local music around me, I started to understand people I didn’t know. It was dope to be in the same city as these people. I was hearing flows that were better than industry [artists], [music] better than industry artists and I’m like yo’ one of us has to make it out of here. It was heavy motivation seeing people like Webster (X), Ish (Darr), Jacob (Latimore), ya’ know what I mean? People like them. So for me to get that love from them was like…”. He opened his eyes all wide and smiled. “It was like yo’! Timeout!...Say less!” 8
So how does he do it?
WHO IS ON SHUN’S HIT LIST
Shun has a preference to keep it all as a natural as possible. The habit of self-recording from when he was young (#CassetteLife) has carried over to his current practices: headphones and a laptop.
Besides Allan Kingdom, Shun has a few other artists that he keeps on rotation that inspires his creativity and helps him analyze his position as an artist.
SM: “What’s crazy is when I really started recording and putting songs on SoundCloud it was off of an iPhone and some beats my brother gave me… I was recording little songs off that and it sounded terrible. I used to post them on SoundCloud and get no love but I was like ‘It’s cool, I’m jamming this.’ So that’s when I really started understanding how it works. Then I got my first job and I bought a laptop and that’s when I started mixing my own tunes and dropping them from there. That’s when I was able to gain some ears.” Even some ears over at CopyWrite. (After seeing him perform at FreeSpace and checking out his SoundCloud Shun has been heavy on our radar.) SM: “Music for me was always like therapy. It was there when I had nothing else.”
THE SONG THAT PEOPLE CAN’T STOP TALKING ABOUT
SM: “Isaiah Rashad, based off of the message he gives and based off of the lifestyle he went through; we are somewhat similar. He had moments when he was depressed and down bad. You could hear that in his music. He had relationship issues that also gave him insecurities. Something is there...so I’m heavy influenced by him. Then it was Big Sean, because not only does everybody say I look like him. They be like, ‘Hey you look like Big Sean or sound like him, Boi, I do it.’ *In his Big Sean voice*. Plus my name is Shun; so it made me want to connect even more. When I listen to him it was the metaphors that caught me. It was the style and the messages he gives. He never has had a song where it was pure BS. There is always some kind of motivation and that’s what people don’t credit, that music gives you gems to a better lifestyle. Big Sean was always creative and that’s how I picture myself. Kanye West, anybody can get that motivation from him. You can hear that hustle and that midwest vibe...it’s that lyricism. His music just gives you that comfortability.”
A MOMENT OF WISDOM
SM: “I remember (the day) I recorded N$TB “Norf Side Trap B**ch.” I went to the gas station and bought me a Redbull and Swisher.” (Shun is a self-professed stoner but he says it helps keep him calm). “I was off that day and I was motivated. It was a beat I had bought from Lil Voe and I was like, ‘I spent a lot of money on this beat so I gotta do something crazy with it. As soon as I started freestyling on it, it was an automatic vibe and I remember my brother being like ‘Use that flow. That’s THAT flow.’ I was like ‘Say less.’.”
SM: “Regardless of how much you love something that doesn’t mean you know it fully. You have to be on your P’s and Q’s when it comes to this. You have to be on point. You have to be on business… I just want to make sure I’m able to put in the best I can.”
After sending a rough draft to his homie Zay & recording it with his mic. They mixed it; sent it out to be mastered; did a few more cuts to it and BAM! A hood “classic” was born.
Shun is very much “himself.” His aura is calm (with a little help from the THC), his convo casual but very inviting, and his eagerness to do more and “say less,” is exciting to see coming out of the Zoo*.
Shun definitely felt the love for this one after Allan Kingdom (Canadian artist who has a nice track record and worked with Kanye and the like...) tweeted the songs lyrics “Norf side trap b**ch straight out of the zoo,” after the song’s release.
*The Zoo: a colloquial term for an area located on Milwaukee’s North Side (with a wild side).
SM: “At that moment I was jumping off the roof because this was an artist I listen to every day. I was listening to ‘Fables’ every day on my way to school, you know what I mean?’ Kingdom even extended his reach to Shun, DM’ing him to see if the song had visuals yet because he wanted all parts. (Something tells us that Shun will have all that squared away soon.)
“I just don’t want to be basic at all… I’m Shun Millions… I’m all about being me and when you’re you, that’s how you create the best.”
SM: “I’m literally making these songs just off of freestyling in my bedroom off a laptop with earbuds in my ear… if I’m able to manage with that, I can only imagine what I can get to once I gain these certain opportunities in the future.” Even with his music being his first love Shun has also realized that there are other things he can pursue simultaneously, one of them being Botany. Shun has become highly interested in plants and is even currently working in that field. Sprouting from his own shaky roots, cultivating some sort of life actually seems fitting.
TURNING OVER A NEW LEAF (Haha yup, you see how corny and perfect this title segway is?) SHOOTER: DALLAS THOMPSON
CW: “There is a lot of variety in your music. There are a lot of Trap references but there is wordplay, flow switch up, there is still a hefty amount of balance for you to be so young...so where do you see your sound going?” SM: “Every song that I ever dropped I never said I liked. It was always an if, and, or, but to it. I had always felt there was something I could tweak but after getting feedback from my brother, I would listen to it again and then I could sit back and hear what he was hearing. I could sit back and be Shun. I just want to sound like me?... I write off my experience a lot.” CW: “That’s another thing… there is a lot of stuff in your lyrics. We can pull at it like this; there is sex, there are drugs, there’s conflict, there’s that being young and wild. There is some reflection in there, you’re only 20 (21 now), so how is this even applicable to your life?” SM: “Peep this, remember that two years when I was in high school messing up. (We had a chat earlier about snippets of his past)... I was living in the Meadows on like 95th & Brown Deer, the bad stupid part. It was just by being around those crowds. Smoking weed and going to parties at the age of 13 and sh** like that. I was always getting in trouble by Moms because everyone knew that wasn’t [the real] me… my brother was even on me because I was always the good kid getting A’s and stuff in school… I was pretty much falling into the stereotype of a Milwaukee teen. I was selling in high school and got caught getting into fights. I was the skinny kid, that wasn’t me. I had to learn to self-discipline and take advice. It got to a point where Moms couldn’t deal with it and I had to leave. That’s when big bro and my Grandpa pretty much helped me reevaluate myself… it was becoming a habit and I had to stop.” So Shuns lyrics are real to him. Not that he is proud of his past, but his progress has turned into motivation and he uses it as a tool, to tell his story and tries to push the narrative in a way those listening can connect to. Now when people meet him and hear his music they often say ‘There is just something about Shun’ and they are right. CW: “So, what don’t they know?” SM: “Well I love plants. Even though I’m a stoner… I don’t just like burning them I like bringing them to life… I don’t know I guess I’m different. I don’t know how to describe myself that’s the crazy part. I love music. I love positive energy… I love motivating people. I love giving advice. I love talking.” (We can tell. We seriously only asked three questions during the whole interview...Lol).
Shun believes that it’s dope when people don’t really understand you but you can still show them different. With his positive vibes and his youth on his side, he has nothing but time to do just that. SM: “My favorite song right now is ‘Real Ass Sh*t’ from King Los. He said ‘They tried to throw dirt on my name. I gave them flowers back.” It’s all relative. /CW
M E N TA L I L L N E S S :
B Y N ATA L I A M O R Y N S @i.am.lio
M E N TA L H E A LT H
In some of my darkest moments, I have found myself locked somewhere deep within looking from the inside out. Almost as if I was trapped in an abyss of my body’s depth (more like my mind’s). A place where I would fall when I felt like I had no control over my surroundings, the things happening to me, or even myself. Walking around as a shell of myself, I sometimes felt like an imposter in my own body. Times where I couldn’t eat, drink, or do anything but sleep. At work I functioned like the undead, constantly maneuvering in autopilot. This feeling, this space that occupies my mind, has been with me a little before my parents divorce. Watching my family fall apart under this was the first time I could remember being met with depression and anxiety. At the time I was no more than 9 years old and I could see the rockies, the mountains taking shape in the landscape of my parents marriage. My first real experience with mental illness wasn’t my own but that of my father’s. A man layered with pride and raised in machismo. He was an immigrant from Nicaragua with no real father figure of his own. Like most men of color (MOC), he was taught to suppress his emotions, to be this creature bred of strength and force never wavering into a lane of vulnerability or tenderness. stigmas that all too often follow men of color around and even bring them to death’s door. It is the idea that you must be bigger than your problems, stronger than your ailments. As a MOC, your problems are of no one’s concern but your own and yours alone to handle. Emotions were under the definition of weakness in my father’s book and ironically enough his true personal kryptonite. He could never control his own and would often go from one high of emotions to the next. He’d be high strung and sprung off of life’s excitement or downright cruel and cold, giving all those around him a taste of his slick tongue and icy shoulder. He was never diagnosed because he refused to go or be subject to mood stabilizers. It was evident to my family that my dad mirrored the symptoms of someone with Bipolar disorder. Being subject to his irrational behavior and refusal to care for his mental health took a toll on us, eventually led to the demise of his marriage, and the loss of his family.
I’ve seen mental illness in my uncle, who as a boy had ADHD. My grandfather, too proud to admit that his son’s behavior was different from those around him, thought offering him alcohol would be the answer. My grandfather, an alcoholic himself, unknowingly perpetuating the cycle of alcoholism within the community of Brown and Black men. My uncle grew into a man that fell on alcohol as a crutch, never learning healthy coping mechanisms for his illness. As I’ve gotten older I’ve found that these belief systems in our Black and Brown communities hinder us from understanding mental illness. Be it the extreme lack of resources, support from our government and community leaders or the repetitive cycle POC find ourselves in, it has become an issue. The concept we have learned as POCs (people of color), is that we will get through the moment in our life which is troubling us. “It will pass” or “just give it time” and the all too popular, “pray on it”, “give it up to the Lord, let Jesus take care of you” narratives has held us hostage too long. Now this is not to take away from those who believe in God or are religious. But when you are sick with the flu, have broken a bone, or need surgery do you tell yourself, “Let me pray on it and God will rid me of this Cancer” or “If I give it some time, this bone will heal straight and correctly?” We forget that the mind needs to be seen by doctors or specialists when it falls sick as well. We forget that seeing someone for our mental health is not a privilege just for our White counterparts in the suburbs. It is also not a luxury not afforded to us simply because we are not rich. We forget that not taking care of our mental illness could be detrimental to our health or even lead to suicide in extreme cases. In a study found on the National Alliance on Mental Illness website (www.nami.org), 10 out of every 100,000 Latino men committed suicide and African American adults are 30% more likely to experience mental health problems than the remaining population.
WE FORGET THAT NEGLECTING OURSELVES COULD COST US OUR LIVES. According to the American Psychiatric Association, one in five U.S. adults face one form or another of mental illness.
M E N TA L H E A LT H
That is nearly 19% of the country. M.I. is classified as a health condition which affects the mind and involves a change in either your emotions, behavior, thought process or a combination of the three. Also note, Depression and Anxiety aren’t the only forms of mental illness out there. There’s: •Bipolar disorder - A disorder associated with episodes of mood swings ranging from depressive lows to manic highs. •ADHD - (Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder) Often begins in childhood and can persist into adulthood. It may contribute to low self-esteem, troubled relationships, and difficulty at school or work. Symptoms include limited attention and hyperactivity. •BPD - (Borderline Personality disorder) a mental disorder characterized by unstable moods, behavior, and relationships. •Schizophrenia - Characterized by thoughts or experiences that seem out of touch with reality, disorganized speech or behavior, and decreased participation in daily activities. •OCD - (Obsessive compulsive disorder) Characterized by unreasonable thoughts and fears (obsessions) that lead to compulsive behaviors. OCD often centers on themes such as a fear of germs or the need to arrange objects in a specific manner. Symptoms usually begin gradually and vary throughout life. And… •PTSD - (Post traumatic stress disorder) The condition may last months or years, with triggers that can bring back memories of the trauma accompanied by intense emotional
and physical reactions. Symptoms may include nightmares or unwanted memories of the trauma, avoidance of situations that bring back memories of the trauma, heightened reactions, anxiety, or depressed mood. (Which happens a lot in the Black & Brown community.) There are many more variations of disorders out there and these are a few of the most common. The importance in knowing there are options for you and taking those steps to a healthier functioning you is vital. Having a mental illness is not a crutch in life, does not make you less than or take away from the beauty of you as a person. It’s a humanizing experience because you are never alone in your mental health. There are others out and functioning who look just like you, share your same struggles, that are living life and managing their mental illness at the same time. You can too. Remember to take care and love yourself; body and mind. If you or a loved one is suffering from mental illness and are looking for some resources within the greater Milwaukee area, here are a few: RESOURCES: www.mentalhealthline.org Pathfinders - pathfindersmke.org (414) 964-2565 4200 N Holton St, Suite 400 Milwaukee, WI “Pathfinders empowers youth confronted by homelessness, crisis, or trauma to be safe and connected in order to develop a path towards self-sufficiency, healthier families, and a stronger community.”
Walker’s Point Youth & Family Center - walkerspoint.org (414) 647-8200 2030 W National Ave Milwaukee, WI “Meeting the needs of runaway, homeless, and other troubled youth and their families from Milwaukee’s diverse communities by providing services to empower youth, help them resolve personal and family problems, strengthen family relationships, and support safe and stable homes.” Depression Bipolar Support Alliance - dbsamilwaukee.org (414) 255-8536 540 S 1st St Milwaukee, WI “DBSA Greater Milwaukee provides hope, help, support, and education to improve the lives of people who have mood disorders.” Vital Voices for Mental Health - vital-voices.org (414) 771-4368 912 N Hawley Rd Milwaukee, WI “An advocacy organization initially created for individuals with mental illness who use services provided by agencies within the Milwaukee County behavioral health system. The mission of Vital Voices is to advocate for excellence in mental health and substance use recovery services through the voice of the people being served.” Let’s break the stigma. You are not alone. /Natalia P.S. A lot of these phonelines are confidential. They will not provide your information to anyone else (unless they feel like you’re in danger.)
SHOOTER: MAHDI GRANSBERRY
W/ ROB RANDOLPH
We met Rob Randolph back in 2015 when he was just stepping on the scene. His humble demeanor and his great eye have always been admired by our team. Now that he’s “back” and going hard, we’d like to say we saw it coming… (& it’s bound to be something worth capturing.) CW: “We met you when you were first stepping into the game…” RR: “Yea with one foot in the water.” CW: “Yea! So we really want you to tell us from your perspective, how you got to this point. That was back in what, 2000 and…” RR: “2015...it’s crazy to me. I remember it was a period of time on Facebook where my name was on somebody’s photo every single day. I would wake up and I would have five notifications of people posting my photos.” He is right. Everyone was getting their pictures taken by Rob. He was talented, humble, and his prices were a lick. We even had the pleasure of working with him on a few occasions. (Most notable work in CopyWrite’s Issue Five, Brass Rooster spread. Peep the floating hat? That’s all Rob.) But the one thing that stood out about him the most, was that he was untainted by all the “perspective” politics that can corrupt a creative from being in the mix. Rob loved to shoot and from the outside looking in, it seemed effortless. CW: “So how did you start doing Photography?” RR: “I was in high school, in the eleventh grade. I was trying to figure out what college I’m going to go to and I’m getting pressured to go to college or whatever. We had the people come in talking about the Art Institute and it peaked my interest. So I looked into it and figured out they had a film program so (I) ended up going to the Art Institute out in Chicago.” Tuition was high, and now looking back on it Rob would have rather been doing something else with his time. (Cough
Cough it’s a scam...but you didn’t hear it from him). In order to offset the cost, he applied to this competition where you made a five-minute short film and if you won they would pay half your tuition. So he went for it. RR: “So I bought a $300 camera...I tried to make me a little movie, of course, this was my first one so it was terrible. I didn’t end up getting the scholarship but I had a camera at this point, so I just started shooting with it.” Rob would start taking pictures of everything. Dogs, door knobs, random things. He would focus in on details, developing his eye. RR: “So at that point, once I actually started to go to school in Chicago I would walk to school and on my commute I would take pictures with my phone on the way, and that’s how I learned how to edit. I was doing it all on Prime. Taking pictures of whatever I see, edit, using programs like Afterlight or VSCO and that’s how I honed my eye and my editing skills. Those are the pictures I posted on Instagram… I wish I still had them.” At that point, Rob was teaching himself behind the lens and staying in Chicago for an educational experience with a hefty price tag that wasn’t challenging his curiosity and self-taught skill. It no longer was a fit to say the least. RR: “I had made the decision that I didn’t need to be in school for what I was doing so I came back (to Milwaukee) and I wasn’t really doing anything. I didn’t know what I wanted to do in life. I had always had photography but I never thought I would be trying to make money from it. It was just a little thing that I did.” But the “little thing” that he did would soon grow. He would establish a brand for himself with a logo just as a “hobby.” But after his (iconic) shoot with Christopher Cunningham standing in front of an American flag in his house, everyone took notice.
RR: “He posted them and people started to hit me up after that. After Chris, it was Mike Regal. I would (shoot) the shows and stuff. From working with him, even more people started to reach out to me and that’s where my name started to really get built. It was a pretty crazy experience. It all happened so, so fast.” CW: “Yeah we would say so! (We all laughed.) That’s not a long timeline but it is an extensive one… you have definitely made an impression on people here.” That impression may have a lot to do with Rob taking on the unexpected and developing his craft. He thinks it’s important to be able to shoot in any environment and know what photography arsenal to use at any given moment. However, to Rob, there is nothing like a good portrait where you can capture a person’s personality just in an image. CW: “Do you think you have a certain style to the way you shoot?” RR: “I really don’t know. That’s the thing… (He paused.) I guess I do have a style because I know exactly what I want a photo to look like and if it feels off then I will literally feel it in my being that it’s off. So I think when things actually do (align) that is my style.”
That’s the art being in sync with the artist. (We hope that’s not a new concept for the world.) Since Rob is a dope photographer in MKE we thought it be smooth to let one of his peers pick his brain. Our in-house photographer and videographer, FreakishNerd, had a few questions he had to shoot Rob’s way. Q: “What’s your favorite thing to eat during an all-nighter?” (If there is a food question in a CW interview, it more than likely came from Freakish.) A: “Hmmm. What do I want next to me? You know what I want next to me, I want one of them jars of cashews and some PureLife raspberry ice tea.” (Energy food much...but don’t let that fool you. Every now and then some Hot Fries get thrown into the mix.) Q: “What are your top eight Milwaukee shooters (established or up & coming)?” A: “You know what, this is a question I have actually thought about. For sure in no particular order, my one and two would have to go to Mahdi Gransberry (Hey, that’s you Freakish) and Weston Rich. I count those dudes as actually inspiring me to shoot the way that I’m doing now. Before that shoot
with Chris in 2015, I was following Wes’ work on Tumblr and I had already been following Mahdi’s work because we had crossed paths before, but I knew he did short film all the way back to like Black Shore. I don’t even know if he knows that I know about that (#Fans). Yeah with those two dudes I would see how they would shoot and how they would go to these shows and capture them in such a beautiful way. I was like ‘I want to do that. I can do that.’ So I started to do it, but I did it in my own way and that’s kind of how I was able to get in... Then, of course, I have to say Brema. That’s my guy and one of the coldest shooters in Milwaukee.” After that he mentioned: - Anthony Anderson for his “really great studio work.” - The good folks at After Gallery (Flow and Darius) -V on Harris, because he is a beast and knows his lighting well. - Corey Fells “He is very motivational.” And to end off with a solid eight for eight selection: Damien Blue! Q: “How has your creative process evolved from before your “hiatus” to now?” A: “I think now I’m more honed. It’s kind of like watching
a movie about a boy born in the jungle. When he is first born he is a baby and can’t really do anything, then you see him growing like Tarzan...then time skips forward five years and he is a teen and he is throwing spears and flipping... So yeah now I would just say I’m a little more honed (in on my skills) I can look at a photo and know it’s done.” So what was this “hiatus” anyways? Well, we all know in life sometimes things happen and the only solution is to revamp. In the high of Rob’s branding build up his camera broke. A shooters nightmare! RR: “I think I just wore that thang out. I needed a new one. So (it was like) if my camera is making money (and it’s broke) how am I going to make money? So I had to get a job.” That’s when Rob joined Public Allies ten-month program, where he would be trained in socio-economic topics and leadership roles. In his apprenticeship, through the program, he would work at the courthouse where he carved out his own position using his shooter eye and graphic inclination to enhance their visual marketing. After his apprenticeship was over they hired Rob as an independent contractor. For the #Win!
The hiatus caused Rob to focus in on something a little different but going low profile opened up other avenues that would have never been explored if that camera would have never been broken. Now, Rob has a dope studio with his homies and those Rob Ran shots keep popping up across our social media feeds. CW: “Are you happy to be back?” RR: “I’m very happy. This is all I want to do with my life. I just love sharing my work with people. I love hearing people say they’re inspired by my work, that I (personally) inspire them in some way, or that people are studying my work. At the end of the day, all I really want is to push Milwaukee forward. I want our city to be recognized as an Austin, Texas or an L.A. A lot of people want to leave but that’s so easy. If I left I would probably be rich by now but I want to stay here because Milwaukee has to grow and it needs pioneers and I want to be one of those.” (Clap for’ em! That state of mind is definitely the force helping push MKE’s creative scene. We all have to put in that work and be shooting in the gym to help reap the rewards.) BACKTRACK! (One more question from Freakish): Q: “What’s next for the scene and what do establish photographers need to do to stay relevant?” A: “One thing an established photographer has over a new one is experience. So you know what to expect. If you are established enough to have your own style, stay in that and always make sure your next shoot is your best shoot. Just stay true to you, how you shoot, and what you shoot. If you do that, you will stay relevant. Nobody will be able to blow you over.” CW: “So what’s new for the scene?” RR: “I’m disappointed a bit because there is really nothing fresh. I was going to all the shows in 2016, so I have seen all the rappers that Milwaukee has and a lot of them are not doing anything right now. We have like a lot of new cats right now but they all look like big-name industry artist. I go into a show and I see like five Uzi’s and five Migos… it’s like our city really needs to just be itself.” CW: “Can you explain why that is so relevant to what you do? Why is the rap scene, the hip-hop scene and the creative scene so relevant to your craft?”
RR: “We capture all of this. As photographers we are historians. We are people whose work years from now, will display those ancient relics. A photo can be taken of an up and coming rapper now and it can be used to tell that story later. We are here to capture these moments in a positive and dope light.” This is why we always keep a shooter with us. Photographers have the ability to change the narrative and tell the stories in ways memory can never retrieve. RR: “I just see that VH1 documentary and I see a photo (I took) getting zoomed in on.” (He laughed confidently at the thought.) “That’s what I see. So every time I’m at a show I want a picture like that!” Rob is trying to establish these classics! Born and raised in Milwaukee as a PK (Pastor’s kid), Rob has always had a challenge of being his own person and doing his own thing. Where his father (who he is named after) has such a great influence in the church subculture of the city, Rob is developing his own name in a different realm. However, his upbringing in the church does weigh in on his perspective of the city and where it may go. RR: “When I look at (Milwaukee) I think of strength. In a way when things happen and they affect our community, our city most of the time has a spirit of unity. At the same time, there still is a lot of division. I feel like it was better here growing up and it’s a lot more dangerous now. There are a lot of people you can’t trust. There is a lot going on but I know our city is so creative. It has so much art and diversity... depending on where you go here. We are definitely on the up and coming and in the next ten years we will be one of those (creative) hubs.” The contribution that creatives like Rob bring to the table will definitely help in making that a thing. CW: “Is there anything you want people to know about you?” RR: “I don’t know; I’m a nice guy.” CW: “We love when people start off like that. Haaaaa ‘I’m a nice guy?!?’ Is there a perception that you are not?” RR: “Maybe. I’m reserved and I’m very quiet, so I feel like maybe that rubs some people in the wrong way...you know it’s like how Cardi B said ‘If I see you and I don’t speak that means I don’t f**k with you.’ I mean that does not always mean that. I’m just quiet and laid back. If you approach me and we talk; it could be a dope conversation.”
Even in his reservation, Rob definitely has a lot to say and even more to shoot. His ultimate dream is to be one of those people who end up in those same iconic VH1 documentaries he mentioned before. Equalluy, when they talk about Milwaukee and the renaissance of art that occurred here, he wants to be one of those names they drop. RR: “I want them to say ‘He captures it all with an eye that was unique to him. He inspired a lot of people. He was there.’” Being a shooter, that makes perfect sense. The tangible perspective of a documentary to show his legacy? Niceeeeee! CW: “So what do you plan on doing from here? You have access, you have a name for yourself and you have nothing but potential and plenty time...what are you now 25-24? RR: “23!”
CW: “Yeah you have plenty of time. So what are you going to do?” RR: “I think I just want to keep grinding. I might try some new avenues… legally.” (He smiled.) “I’m just going to try to do some different things and switch it up because the creative is not limited to what he is most known for. A creative has unlimited power. You can apply creativity to anything. If I wanted to become a salsa dancer, I would become the coldest salsa dancer in the Mil.” (Ayeeee! That’s creative confidence.) Rob also plans to travel and look for inspiration to bring back to his city and his craft. RR: “Milwaukee is home. I love this city. It’s so beautiful. I just want to see it grow. I want to see the culture push forward.” That’s why we respect the shooter. /CW
+ + + + + + +
, (real name Lorenzo Moody), is knocking at the door of the creative/music scene and it’s probably a good idea to let him in, rather you like it or not. With his distinct voice, production skills, creative director qualities and graphic art inclinations; he has morphed into a one-man powerhouse of creative abilities.
“ The creation process is not the same for me.” CopyWrite sat down with Renz to figure out how he really does it all. They say good habits start young, and Renz’s craft is no different. Since the 3rd grade, he has been writing down his raps on paper which upgraded to recording in the studio by the age of 16. RY: “My mom used to find my raps laying everywhere around the house. I used to be cusin’ (oooooo!) but she didn’t really say nothing. She would just ask like ‘Is this yours?’…yeah.” He laughed thinking about his younger self and how his craft has evolved. Hmm…3rd grade is a pretty young age to start penning the words to the pad so where did a youngin’ even get that kind of inspiration? Why rap? Renz believes that his father might be one of the components that steered him these ways. RY: “My dad used to do poetry. He used to read (his poems) to me all the time. I used to do it (too) but not enough for me to really say it in a conversation. Everybody who writes at some point in time probably have wrote poetry. But it never really hit with me and I have always liked music. I think one thing I realized over time is the control you can get (with music). You can control every word, you can control every aspect…you can control how the music sounds, you can control what/how you
say it. You pretty much can control how a person feels when they hear it…so it was mostly just a way to express myself and the control I was able to get from writing.” There are not many things you can control in life, which Renz agrees with. So finding his niche as a rapper in a city with many, but not enough in tune with the power of control is a game changer. Born in Chicago, but raised in Milwaukee he reps the city to the fullest. His perspective and understanding of Milwaukee allows him to maneuver through its confines, while staying grounded. However, still fluid enough to make progress in its music scene. CW: “You moving here at a young age and this being the home you know…what do you think about the city?” RY: “Milwaukee is fine, the people in it are what’s wrong. All cities are the same. It’s the mentality of the people who are in them…one thing I can say about the ‘city’ of Milwaukee is that we all know, how it’s set up…” He paused and then smiled saying: “I don’t know how O.C. I’m about to get with this interview. Hahaha because it can get O.C. like that!” CW: “We prefer it that way.” (Issa controversy LOL) RY: “Oh okay! Well we already know how this city is set up. It’s segregated and it’s set up to keep being that way forever. (He further explained how the streets and freeways run through and around the city are strategic examples of separation of communities. The inner city vs. the outer realm.) Obviously it has its problems but once I found out that people everywhere complain about where they live at and talk about getting out of it. So... I realized it’s all up to you and your outlook on life to figure out what you want and what you’re going to do to make that happen.”
CW: “With saying that, how have you applied that to your life?” RY: “As far as music? I rap about it all the time. I also do stuff to show other people how easy it is to do shit. A lot of people think that, first of all, because you’re from Milwaukee you can’t do certain things and two; they try not to make the most of what they have. They feel restricted, but they soon realize that’s all a mental thing. So as far as music but not just music; I do a bunch of other things…” CW: “We heard!” *This is that moment Renz didn’t get a chance to finish his thought because we were geeked to talk about how, ‘Renz does it ALL!’* CW: “Heard you do all your own graphics.” RY: “I do all my own … I do everything. I knew it but today I finally sat down and was like ‘I literally do everything!’ The only thing I can’t do is hold the camera on myself.” *Quotable* “Haha and that’s just because I physically can’t do it. If I was to tripod it out I would though.” So what is everything…let’s make the list: -EVERYTHINGRY: “From the writing… I make my own beats (For the last year and a half). I write all the raps. I record myself. I master myself. I do a lot of my own graphics…” Daaaaaaammmmnn! That’s a lot! Next to rapping, graphics is what Renz has actually been doing the longest. Besides a few advance high school classes, he is self-trained. He thinks his talents and skills have a lot to do with how his mind works. RY: “When I see something my first thought is to figure out how they did it…so if I see a video or something the first thing
I think is like ‘how did they get that effect?’ I can throw this, with this, and this with that on it to do that. So yeah I don’t really stress over what I think I can do. I just do it.” Renz Young just problem solves. CW: “So since you do it all, you make the beat; you write the words; so what comes first?” RY: “The beat almost all the time. I’m also one of those people who never really change words ever. But that’s my problem though too. I’ll sleep on something because all I had to do was go back and make a tweak to it…I have a studio in my crib and I find that the only time I can write now is when I’m sitting in the chair. I can’t just go sit by the lake and write and stuff like that. The creation process is not the same frame so that’s the part that kind of sucks because I do everything myself. You know like people just play beats and they vibe…I can’t do that.” CW: “They catch the vibe, but you already made it so you already have the intention behind it.” RY: “Yeah, so I can’t vibe the same because it’s a technical aspect behind what I’m doing…so the beat always comes first.” CW: “So you’re like a full artist, all the way around.” _____________________________________________ CW: “You have your own aesthetic (graphically); what influences that total look that you go for?” RY: “I give Von Alexander some credit for that, he kind of showed me how tangible it was to do it. So what I did was a whole bunch of research. I follow graphic designers and I stay current on what’s popular…and at the same time I like a sleek look…I like stuff that looks clean and professional. … Yeah! And I feel like that didn’t really happen until I started making my own beats. I realized you get more respect when you make your own beats and don’t just get them random places…I think once I started doing that people started to appreciate me more.” It makes sense, the beatmaker dictates the vibe of track. You master the vibe; you gain the control of the audience. Renz has full control.
+ + + ARTWORK BY RENZ YOUNG
ARTWORK BY RENZ YOUNG But who cares about the control if the music never reaches our ears? Renz has something for that too:
+ + +
CW: “What is Vogel Park?” RY: “Vogel Park is a record label that I started (as of September 1st). I felt like Milwaukee was missing that. When I was rapping (at) 17/18, there were a lot of groups and collectives. They were kind of put on this higher level because of that. They moved as a team, they had merch back then. I don’t see a lot of people doing that now. There are like two now, I can’t really name many. I wanted to have some place where I could give opportunities more to other artist, where it’s more than just being friends and liking your music…maybe that’s single distribution deals and stuff like that. Milwaukee is missing that completely and that’s something I wanted to bring to the table along with Vogel Park Radio. These are things I can help contribute to Milwaukee music. ” At 26 years young, Renz is the owner of a record label with a promising line up of artist of the Vogel Park “founding group.” Let’s check the hitlist: CAMB AWill (tha Great) Von Alexander Drudini Tyso SPRME & of course Renz Young himself They are working on a compilation to drop this December… is it out yet? RY: “I’m not that old, but you know what I’m saying. I can start working on that. I got enough respect; I got enough skill in enough areas, where I could help a person. I’m not exactly where I want to be but I’m getting there, and well why not, if I can drop some gems where I can.” Coming next year, Vogel Park plans to open up for new artist recruitment and services, so if you think you have the chops for the biz, you might want to start to show face now. RY: “It is a label. I offer distribution to everybody. You get your cut… ” You get your cut?!? Whatttttt. *Moment of silence.*
Okay! See, game changer! Renz suggests that all too often people don’t want to title something because it holds you accountable and responsible for what occurs. Vogel Park is taking on that position and accountability. RY: “It’s just like in a relationship!” He laughed. Renz is committed. Five years from now he hopes to be a touring artist with the bag. Not just setting up his own gigs but getting paid to spit those bars. RY: “I just want to keep building on these accolades that get me the bag… (Right now) I’m at the point in the game where I’m all profit. I don’t have to spend any money to make any money.” That means business is good, and Renz is still enjoying his craft. He has determined that as long as the profit outweighs the expense, the investment is still legit. RY: “That’s why I don’t really knock old rappers anymore. If you have a sure fan base that always mess with you, and you have a low cost to (make your music). It’s quick flips; why not? We shun people who rap that’s like 30 or 32…” *PAUSE*
+ + +
ARTWORK BY RENZ YOUNG
We never really thought about it that way. Renz has a point. We place a high stigma on rappers who just seem too old to keep pursuing their career, but are we being judgmental or nah? If the profit outweighs the expense (time, money and energy) and they still enjoy what they are doing, why are we hatin’? Nobody ever tells a painter to put down their paintbrush or a photographer to stop shooting, so why should a seasoned rapper drop the mic? (But not the ones who be trying to act young…y’all don’t count. LOL) RY: “Now that I look at it as a business I can’t be mad at them…let’s do the math.” On the flip side, where Renz is invested in the music, the city, and the change, all the hooting and the hollering is not for him. CW: “What is something we don’t know about you?” RY: “Hmm, actually as much as I put myself out there musically…I don’t care for these apps at all! (He meant it y’all! He said it strong with plenty of comical disdain in his voice.) I don’t care. I don’t care at all. I don’t care about what you got going on, on the Internet bro! I DON’T CARE!” CW: “LMAO “Oh so you are not a social media fan.” RY: “Twitter, I still live on Black Twitter.” (He laughed...if y’all don’t know about Black Twitter y’all ain’t never been.) “I live on there but I’m just not consumed by it. You know what I’m saying? I don’t seek validation from other people. People are either looking for validation or enjoyment (on these apps)… I was just talking to someone yesterday about how they spent hours on Facebook because it was funny but then in the same sentence they said how much their life sucked. You can’t spend hours on this thing and expect your life not to suck. How about when you’re not at work, working for the man, you work for yourself?...so yeah I don’t really care for these apps. I don’t really care for Snapchat. I don’t really care for a... what the f- did I just make the other day?!? A Bitmoji! But I just made one! Because I guess girls like Bitmojis.” HILARIOUS! *Girls do like Bitmojis.* RY: “But I do like sharing my music and giving people the opportunity to stumble upon it.” Pro-Tip from RY: “On SoundCloud Pro you can replace tracks. So if I put something out and find something wrong with it…” (You can tweak it…GENIUS!)
CW: “Is there anything that inspires you? Music-wise, art-wise, locally, philosophies?” RY: “I can honestly say my biggest inspiration is growing up around rich people and poor people…it gives you different aspects of life. Everything you see rich people do becomes tangible. Like I have seen somebody break their Macbook and same day go to the store and buy one. I have been around people who can honestly say they have spent a million dollars in their lifetime without hesitation. (However), I have seen roaches and been around people who keep cats around, not as pets but to catch mice. I have lived in both of those environments so it changes my outlook. So that’s my biggest inspiration. So when I have a little Black kid they won’t have to worry about their color holding them back.” Y’all heard that right, Renz wants a kid! *Drop the Bitmoji here LOL* He also believes that it’s about having equity too. “It’s all about what you own.” He suggests that buying things that depredate is a problem for many of his counterparts. CW: “Those values are all built into what you are doing with the record label right?”
ARTWORK BY RENZ YOUNG
+ + + +
RY: “Yes! And another thing that many people from Milwaukee don’t understand is that they have to stop waiting to get on, and do stuff. People are always waiting. You have to stop comparing yourself to people who are on the same level as you. That’s another thing people do wrong. I hold myself to an industry standard. So whatever famous people are doing (to be successful) that’s what I’m doing, even if its just in Milwaukee to their caliber at my level…let me stop, I’m not trying to give away too much game.” CW: “You wouldn’t be the first. You see what happens when people get comfortable.” RY: “Right! But yeah you should be comparing yourself to the people where you want to be at, not the ones next to you… the small mentality does not matter anymore but people still have it. But they use the Internet for the wrong reason. Like to make memes with Jordan crying faces.” CW: “But sometimes those are valid!” We all laughed.
RY: “It do be some creative people on there with it. I be like I see y’all doing y’all thing. (He said sarcastically.)” The Internet is undefeated. With all the skills in motion, the music at a constant, the record label on the line and of course his new Bitmoji in play, Renz does have one BIG gem he doesn’t mind handing out:
“ Let me just do the math real quick…let me do the math because I’m sh**ty at math…there are 24 hours in a day. You’re going to spend 8 of those hours at work and 7 of those hours for sleep. What are you going to do with those remaining 9 hours of your time?” Good question. /CW
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Glo bal Thoughts: Itâ€™s getting hot in here!
G LO B A L I M PAC T
“Ain’t no global warming baby it’s just your imagination...Righhhhht!”* The climate is changing, and I’m not talking about the way we reference vibes (even though that’s a thing too), but the real climate yo’! The climate change that affects all of us, and is putting humanity in a social dysfunction. “As it has done throughout the centuries, the earth is going through a change. The reasons for this change at this particular time in the earth’s long history are being debated and researched by academic entities outside the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.” (DNR, 2017) Peep that verbiage? Regardless of your political affiliation (at CopyWrite Magazine, ‘We are not political. WE ARE SOCIAL.’), unless you have been sitting in a box for the last 10 years, you have noticed that something is drastically different about the weather, no matter where you’re from. No snow until mid-December in the Midwest, 40 degrees in Miami (plus the dangerous winds and destruction this past summer), brutal hurricanes hitting the coast and annihilating Puerto Rico, plus the wildfires in Cali… No, all of that is happening. All of that is real. Before the administration change, the DNR statement actually read, “Earth’s climate is changing. Human activities that increase heat-trapping (“greenhouse”) gases are the main cause.” (DNR, 2016). Ohhhhhhh so all of a sudden there is no “greenhouse” gases and the polar caps are not melting? Right, cool story bro. So why does this matter? Why is CopyWrite, all urban local and what not, taking time out to mention it? Well because the social impacts of global warming and the constant dismissal of its existence have caused strife that affects us and our community on a social level and that we just won’t stand for. When nature shows face (especially because we have abused it), it is our job as humans to help our fellow man, survive the aftermath and repair our communities. It’s apart of being #SociallyResponsible.
When something is not in your face, it’s easy to avoid it but that doesn’t make it not our problem. The destruction in Houston, Texas and Puerto Rico over this last year is outrageous and the aid that has been provided by our government agencies is...what’s the nicest way to put this? Ummm...Weak as F**k! First things first, Puerto Rico is apart of the United States. (If you didn’t know that please take a history and geography course so you can get on game.) The fact that many of its towns have had still little to no access to clean water and food almost four months after the hurricanes (The MULTIPLE Hurricanes) says something about our society. Why are we not helping our people? If we take a look at the power structure at the moment, there is a clear dismissal of real-world issues. The Jones act that controls shipping between the US mainland and the island of Puerto Rico was waived (but only temporarily) after the governor of Puerto Rico begged for assistance for the island. Begging for the resources that will help salvage OUR people, resources they are already entitled to as citizens of OUR country? It’s as if Katrina taught us nothing. Emmmm… All the hoopla and the hollering we do in this society should be directed at people dying and our world crumbling. Something has to give. Here is the clincher, nature knows no boundaries. It does not care if you are rich, poor, man, woman or child. It can not see your ethnicity. It has no care for your political affiliations and it will not spare you just because you are you. These storms are encroaching deeper and deeper into our little bubbles, and when they burst, what will we do? This time it’s the weather, next time it could be a nuclear holocaust, and REALLY look at what’s going on in the world, that concept is not far-fetched. We urge you to put yourself in a place where you think about these things. Because when WE don’t; they win. Now start recycling, do good deeds, and mind ya flippin’ business. It’s the least you can do. #SociallyResponsible /Dirty
*S/O the Department of Natural Resources of Wisconsin for the quote. Learn more at www.dnr.wi.gov*
PHOTOS: WESTON RICH
MILWAUKEEHOME STORE & FRIENDS 159 N JACKSON ST. SUITE 101 MILW, WISC 53202 WWW.MKEHOME.COM | FOLLOW US ON INSTAGRAM @MILWAUKEEHOME
Anti-Cuffing Season Confidence has always been the sexiest part of any outfit. This Winter Season, we decided to take back our power. SO FU*K CUFFING SEASON, welcome to Anti-Cuffing Season. Inspired by SZA’s Ctrl album and Brent Faiyaz’s Sonder Son; we crafted a look book with newest trends to warm your mind, soul and wardrobe. In collaboration with The Style Hub.
SUPERMODEL SUPERMODEL SUPER MODEL
"Why I can't stay alone just by myself?
Wish I was comfortable just with myself But I need you,
but I need you,
but I need you"
"Why you bother me when you know you don't want me?
LOVE GALORE 36
"Fearin' not growin' up Keepin' me up at night Am I doin' enough? Feel like I'm wastin' time."
"I get so lonely, I forget what I'm worth We get so lonely, we pretend that this works."
DREW BARRY MORE DREW BARRY MORE
"My man is my man is your man Heard it 's her man too."
TUESDAY WEDNESDA THURSDAY FRIDAY
"Make him lose his mind every weekend."
'Cause I love you just how you are Hope you never find out who I really am.
'Cause you'll never love me,
you'll never love me,
you'll never love me
SO FAR GONE SO FAR GONE SO FAR GONE SO FAR GONE
"But out here baby boy's so far gone
Lord knows I ain't been home in so long
Game so deep and the drinks so strong
And I don't trust no one at all
"Far away from you
I've already paid my dues
I'm trying just to get along."
I don't got a lot but I'm making do
"Truth is, I came to know ya Don't give a damn about the things
they told ya
'Cause they don't have a clue
But they don't read you like I do."
TALK 2 U TALK 2 U TALK 2 U
"We were young and in this world
chasing dreams and girls
Running from our problems’"
“"All the homies, we came up the same way
And I swear ain't nothing change
Got a little bit of change in my pocket
but I maintain..."
GANG OVER LUV GANG OVER LUV
SONDER SON SONDER SON SONDER SON
" To you It might look like I'm just doing what I want right now Like who I'm wit, just who I want right now."
–––– A VERY
FREAKISH 2018 –––– A few months back I calculated the possibility of a tenth issue of CopyWrite coming out before the year ends. I knew I wanted to write something, but I wasn’t sure what it’d be. I had a couple different drafts of ‘Top 10 Whatevers of 2017’, but that’s over done and CW readers aren’t checking for Freakish’s opinion on music and movies (yet). I have the honor of presenting to you the next best thing… A List of Things I’m Looking Forward to in 2018!
EVERYTHING DONALD GLOVER
NEW KANYE MUSIC
I have to get this out the way now. I’m a huge fan of Donald. Been a huge fan since High School. Derrick Comedy Era Donald. Culdesac Era Childish Gambino. I have been anticipating his popularity for years and in 2018, it’s only beginning to boom. A new season of Atlanta (Robbin’ Season), The Lion King, the Han Solo movie, new music with Migos, and a new album? (*crosses fingers*) 2018 is going to be a great year for Donald Glover and a great time to be a fan.
I’m a Kanye stan. I liked Yeezus and Life of Pablo is one of my faves. My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy is my favorite album, I’m always excited for new Ye no matter what y’all say. You can’t tell me nothing (Oooooh Ooooh Oh). All I know is that he’s been in the mountains with Rick Rubin and Pusha T and I’m expecting greatness as per usual. Always bet on Ye, unless he really is running for President in 2020 then uh… I mean he can’t be any worse, right?
THE 60TH ANNUAL RECORDING ACADEMY GRAMMY AWARDS Bet. On. Black. This year’s ceremony is going to be important. Hip Hop has taken over the culture and these nominations are a reflection of such. 2017 was a great year for music, making it hard to root for everybody Black because everybody IS Black. Migos gotta win. Cardi gotta win. Goldlink gotta win (for the DMV). SZA gotta win. Gambino gotta win. and if Lorde wins album of the year after not being nominated in ANY other category (not even in her own genre), we riot. We have to enjoy it now before Pop comes back in full force next year, but that’s some of that classic “CW Foresight” for you (we peep more than people think).
BLACK PANTHER I shouldn’t have to explain this one. I’m going every week like church. Fight me!
AVENGER’S INFINITY WAR This movie was ten years in the making. Ten years of planning. Eighteen movies worth of set up. This is a huge moment for filmmaking in general, let alone Pop Culture. I watched the trailer twenty-two times and by the time you’re reading this, I’ve probably watched it again.
SEEING THINGS IN MY LIFE START TO PAY OFF Greatest battle of time: Man vs. Self. I have a very specific skill set and I’m hoping to finally see these skills start to work in my favor. I make a lot of people look good. I’ve done work that has catapulted other people and I’m ready to launch myself. Manifest things in my own life. I wish myself well. I’m ready to be in a better position than I am now by the middle of the year.
2017 has left me feeling like every song where Drake is venting on a beat. Introspective, cold, and resentful. So much playing in my face this year. You couldn’t have told me that the same year I go to SXSW and shoot Summerfest officially for the first time would leave me feeling more alienated and cut off from myself than any previous year. I wouldn’t have believed it. So many things have been pulled out from under me. Things that would have changed the course of my life for the better. Friends, work, love, etc. 2017 is Lucy pulling the football away the moment Charlie Brown tries to kick it. I (Charlie Brown) lay on my metaphorical back staring at the clouds I have to wonder was any of this stuff meant for me? If it was I’d have it, right? I don’t know where I’d be without my CW Fam and my Snacks. My friends hold me down and give me strength. I wanna shout out my peoples because I can’t imagine moving into 2018 without them by my side. Syn, Dirty, Vato, Nati, Garahbrie, Lilo, Mikey, Jose, Malikah. Squad. P.O.P. Holding it down. Here’s to 2018. We’re ready for you. Gloves off. \Freakish
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Published on Dec 29, 2017
Published on Dec 29, 2017
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