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MM#11: “A New Day” Hicks remix (prod. by Hicks)

February 5, 2012

*Note: This post was originally released 2 years ago with the original version of this song. The version on Moonlighter’s Mindstate features a different hook and a new beat, produced by Hicks Productions*

OK…this is my “wake up & grind” anthem! I really made this song to inspire & motivate myself to do more…go harder & farther than before. Inspiration-wise, there was a lot weighing on my mind and really I was mentally fatigued…and it was like one of those moments where you hear a voice inside your head like “get up! get out & get something” (c) Outkast. No matter what I felt like I was going through at the time I wrote this song, I really just resolved that I need to push through it & get to my desired destination. Notice I began every verse with “I want…”, cuz well – I want everything within my grasp and I won’t stop until I get it. Even then I won’t stop, because with every new day there’s a new challenge, so rise up & get it! This is especially timely with the beginning of a new decade. No more excuses – if you want it, find a way to get it!

Lyrics-wise, this is one of my more wordplay-heavy songs, hopefully you catch some of the double entendres but if not…so what? I’m sure you can dig the message. This is a new day, so let’s do better and fly higher than we did yesterday.

LISTEN:

Lyrics:
I want the money and the power, every hour getting hungry
Every morning in the shower contemplatin’ how my funds be
The sunny days just run away, reflecting on my younger day
When I used to run and play, not thinking about another day
But times up, I’m off that, grown man B.I.
See I, rely on me myself and I – that’s three I’s
Now that don’t make sense, but my third eye is blind
To the obstacles I’m hoppin’ through while steady on the grind
And so I feel with it, kinda like a finger
Feel for the wheel as I drive, no blinker
Cuz if I blink I may miss my turn and crash it
My lens face the wind, no need for eyelashes
No windshields, I been chill, cooler than the windchill
Listen this is instilled, as if success has been sealed
All in all, a brotha ready for whatever though
A new day is coming, and for it I forever hope

Hook:
I open my eyes and I see the sun shinin’
It’s another day, so it’s back to the grindin’
I got no time for the shuckin’ & jivin’
Better than survivin’, I gotta keep strivin’
(Repeat)

Verse 2:
I want the happiness and success, going through so much stress
Subjected to these tests, I’m wanting no less
Than the best, gotta succeed at all cost
All’s lost if I ever should fail, but naw boss I haul off
Never fall off, regardless of those
Who oppose, so I chose just to hold my pose
No repose I suppose I’ll rest when I’m deceased
Forever dreamin’ but I’m never sleepin’, to say the least
Gotta beast on these beats, get my ‘Rin Tin Tin’ on
Get my ‘dogs’ to ‘cop’ it, push it for a profit
Leak it to the streets, let ’em know that I been on
Till they want my Hancock, I guess I gotta ‘Rockit’
Still keep my hand cocked, writin’ till I rocket
And absorb with the orbit, one amongst stars
To the ones who shadin’ sons’ shine – you could never block it!
I project my success, meanin’ I’mma go far….

Verse 3:
I want it all and it’s amazing, raised in a day
Where your phrasings could pay for a space in the game
I Wheel for my Fortune, spinning with these stanzas
Hoping to see an answer, no need for Vanna White
Can I write while standing right under the rain?
I feel I must to see the light and to fight through all the pain
Change, is dangerous but really only if you satisfied
With the way it is, if you ain’t then you can’t just
Wait for miracle to come dawg I’m anxious
To seize whatever chance that I get to attain this
I bring this with me as I ride through the city
Lane switchin’ flame spittin’ hot fire in the city
Gimme, the wealth and good health – you can keep your riches
Myself? I’d rather switch it and remain on my pivot
Eyes forever trained ready focused for a new day
Staring my success in the face, now that’s the true faith”

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MM#10: Small Talk (prod. by Yankes Productions)

January 30, 2012

First post of 2012!!!

I know it’s been over a month since the last post, but hey…I can take a break, can’t I? This Monday’s post features the short song Small Talk, prod. by Yankes Productions. This joint is just one verse; just a little peak into my mindstate at the time. Kind of a snapshot into what I was feeling like exactly when I wrote the song. Basically, the content is similar to what I’d say in response to the question “How’s it goin’?”….hence the title, “Small Talk”. I’d say it’s definitely one of the more laid-back jams on the mixtape, but definitely one of my personal favorites. Just chill and let it play.

Hey….speaking of “Small Talk”, you should peep Small Talk at 125th and Lenox, an album from one of my favorite artists/inspirations Gil Scott-Heron. Here’s his Comment #1, an unfiltered, searing commentary on some very harsh realities of America:

“Small Talk”  Audio:

Lyrics:

“People ask if I’m still rappin’, I tell ’em ‘Yes!”/They loved The Raptism but they ready for the next/Installment of the series, I Hope They Hear Me/That’s word to Dee-1, I’m feeling really, hopeful cuz people cheer me/I pray that someone feel me as I try to say somethin’/To some it’s a grind, but music’s my escape from it/So what you take from it, is entirely yours/I try to pay attention, it’s all I can afford/As I moonlight trying to make the truth bright/I never presume right, but I’d just as soon write/Down my thoughts on this pen & pad for songs you can listen at/And maybe a line or verse, you’ll remember that/I try to keep these flows on the low, so/I separate my life as a pro-fessional/Till a student hears my raps and says I should blow/No….well maybe so but I’m not entering the industry, you already know why/Or maybe you don’t, but baby I won’t/Cuz I got a wife and we making babies at home/……..Oh maybe not yet, I know you heard P.S./I’m turning to a Family Guy, no TBS/I know Eazy’s a mess but you’re entertained, yes?/I’m just trying my best to see that I’ll always be blessed/I’m just a son in the sun trying to find a way/And in the meantime, I’m hoping for a brighter day/This music’s a journey, a path that we can all walk/Together, it’s always better with small talk”

Be eazy.

MM#9: For Lovers Only

December 12, 2011

Nothing wrong with a good ol-fashioned love song.

Love is great. I’m man enough to stand behind that statement…also man enough to make an honest song about it  In rap, cats will make songs about love quite often – that of money, that of “the game”, of music…but honestly many of the traditional songs saluting the girlfriend, wife, etc. fall flat into an endless dribble of cliche’. You saw the link I included in the last post right? Yeah…there’s that. It’s more than just the fairytale euphoria though…staying in love is about…..well let me be real, I’ve only been married for 3 years so I’m still learning myself. Nonetheless, it’s my viewpoint on the love that I’m experiencing. Notice that there’s only one rap verse…the rest is spoken word monologue – old school-style. I miss the times when singers would talk for 2 or 3 minutes and really let the mood of the song settle in. Example 1   Example 2

Anyways, the instrumental on this track is the only “non-original”; it’s actually from Half-Forgotten Daydreams (John Cameron).  Some may remember it from the Nacho Libre soundtrack. It’s an amazing, cinematic instrumental that honestly, I just couldn’t resist interpreting myself lyrically. Peep the original by Cameron below, followed by the actual song For Lovers Only and the lyrics. Be eazy.

Audio (For Lovers Only):

Lyrics:
Forever in love, it’s not just a phrase to say/when going gets tough, I’m here for the day-to-day/Some cats are twisted, they think they can stay and play/But I won’t, I be thinking many men put they work before they wife/I mean, work before they life/I’m saying really c’mon really is it worth the sacrifice?/it cost to be the boss, every venture has a price/I don’t want it if it means I have an empty bed at night/Not to sound sentimental, I know grown men feel it/You’ve worked 12 hours to come home and deal with/The tug of war, between getting paid and love of course/It’s crazy, but remember all’s fair in love and war/But what are we struggling for? Because we in trouble…or/Is it because we want to be together forevermore?/I know that we better for it, it’s part of the dance/We two-step to the beat of my heart in your hands because you….don’t ….you don’t have to worry ’bout a thing

MM#8: SheRose rmx (feat. Dizzle, prod. by Eurostarz)

December 4, 2011

Songs about the fairer sex (particularly in hiphop) can span from outrageously misogynistic to well, pandering and  corny as all get-out. When done right though, they have a tendency to stick with you, whether you’re a female or male. The original SheRose was the first track I released from The Raptism, and immediately got great feedback from the public. Produced by the Eurostarz/Puzzle Productions, the beat is an expertly flipped/looped sample from Kill Bill...I’m sure anyone who’s familiar with the series recalls that eerie whistle.

The original SheRosewas so well-received that I decided to do a remix of sorts, with a guest (the homie Dizzle from my hometown of Macon, GA) and brand new verses with a bit of a spoken word monologue to close it. Poignant storytelling…but listen for yourself! Lastly, one of my favorite old-school jams is by the group New Birth, it’s called Wildflower and shares a similar theme…it actually inspired me to write this song. Peep it, then audio of SheRose rmx and lyrics below.

Audio:

 

Lyrics
Verse 1:
I sat down and had this convo/With a women that was confused at first/Perused her hurt, and she became the muse for this verse/And she was fed up, with the brothas that messed her head up/To her surprise, I told her “that’s lies, I heard the story before/ If you really were done, then why can’t you understand that you are worth more/Then letting yourself be fooled by some game/These lames be kicking like pros”/She said it’s not her fault, I asked her why/She looked distraught, then her reply/Was that she should be able to trust in us instead of living a lie/I said okay that’s cool but even a pretender needs a fool/To believe him, I mean really they call it ‘game’ for a reason/It takes two to play/And then she say, whatever it is it’s foul/But birds can fly away and she can’t, I pause for a second and rethink/That maybe she’s just a rose stuck on earth beneath the clouds/She still needs some rain to fall before she grows and reaches full strength/I told her ‘peace’, went separate ways/and never saw her after that day/I wonder if she got her act together, I can only pray

Verse 2(Dizzle): She reached out and said “don’t leave, I swear to God you all I got/See my mama was an addict, I was molested by my pops/For years I cried inside, while this Negro climbed on top/I’m screaming ‘make it stop’, my mama steady smoking rocks/My granny said the Lord won’t give you nothin you can’t handle/I miss our conversations, she died last year from cancer/I got so many questions Lord but lack so many answers/In the midst of all this pouring rain somehow I feel like dancing/Cause if don’t I know sooner or later I’ll lose my mind/Lost my uncle, lost my aunt, lost my pops, lost my moms/So many people loving life, well tell me why I hate mine?/I tried so many times but failed miserably to take mine/I woke up in the hospital, they I’m lucky to be alive/I’m looking at life different like, I really coulda died/So now you know the reason why I act the way I act/You see that crack in that pavement? I rose from that”

Spoken Word: Young or old, rich or poor….a woman’s soul is complex and intricate. Delicate enough to be damaged from just a touch but strong enough to endure the roughest times. That strength belies her beauty; the will inside her truly radiates outward to inspire us all as she rises to the sun. You brothas can keep your rolls and fancy clothes, I suppose that’s fine but…I’d rather have a Rose, like She.

MM#7: Good Man (prod. by Freddy Fingers)

November 28, 2011

*slowly recovers from tryptophanic coma*

Shoutout to Freddy Fingers for his craftsmanship on this instrumental. “Good Man” is a spoken word interlude making fun of exploring the “good man” ideals and how appearances can be deceiving. I enjoyed making this one…lighthearted but it’s the truth as I see it! Nothing much to say except listen, share, and enjoy!

Audio:

Lyrics:

Word on the street is

There’s a shortage!

Like, we endangered species, the good black men are going extinct

What do we do?

Oh…his kind must be protected

Let’s put him in zoos to be gawked at, respected but ultimately neglected

Oh but, where are the good men?

Let some of y’all tell it

They exist merely in Tyler Perry flicks

Depicted by brothas like Shemar Moore…hmph.

Or maybe it’s that Hill Harper brotha

Writing Letters to Young sistas….hmph

No?

Well where are the good men?

Perhaps it’s that cat with the sharp suit on

Good job? Check.

Good credit? Check.

No kids and baby mama drama? Double check.

So you decide to date him, try him out

I mean, what’s the harm in seeing what this guy’s about?

Hmph…his disguise is out

So y’all go on a few dates for a couple of weeks

You know, to those places where “bougie” folks like to eat-

His treat –

After all, any good man is a gentleman

Then, after an especially delectable outing he takes you home

He walks you to the door and you both pause

Now keep in mind it’s been a few weeks and your knees are getting a little weak

Maybe from wanting him or

The alcohol you so obligingly consumed an hour earlier

what do you do?

You guess you can trust him right? Hmph.

You let him in your place

And then that sacred space reserved for someone special

Reasoning that if you’ve got the Softest Place on Earth

He’ll never wanna Xscape

Traces of Your Lipstick outline a night with no inhibitions

Like a dream

And you wake up and he’s missin’?

Wherever could he have gone?

Such a good man!

You’re sure he went to work early right?

Hmph.

You try calling him…cell phone

Hmm….that’s strange. You remember he left his business card

Surely, he’ll be at work being such a good working man right?

Uh oh. So by now you figure you’ve been had…

Ok, cool. Not the first, maybe not the last time

But…..at least it was fun

Until about a week later and you come across the realization that your monthly visitor is late

So all is not lost

In fact, he helped you add to the family

While subtracting himself

Woooow.

But he was such a good man!

Hmph.

MM#6: P.S. II (prod. by Eurostarz)

November 21, 2011

Fatherhood. Ahh!!!

If you’re a father, I salute you. If you’re scared to be one, I feel you. If you’re a mere sperm donor, I pray for you. P.S. II was conceived written based on something very close to me. I’ve wrestled many times internally about whether or not I’m ready to become a father…chances are there’s plenty of fellas that have gone through the same thing. First verse is from perspective of a child with an absentee father and how it affects his psyche. Verse 2 is me dealing with my own insecurities, and verse 3 looks at my own father as a towering, nearly unreachable standard of fatherhood. This song is a continuation of P.S. from The Raptism. If you haven’t heard it yet, check it out here for some background: http://eazy.bandcamp.com/track/p-s-2 .

After the audio + lyrics, check out some Youtube videos of my favorite hiphop joints with similar themes.
Audio:

Lyrics
So I feel like I’m a man, even though I’m still a child/Fifteen and never knew you, all my mama did was screw you/And I guess you havin’ the time of your life and livin’ wild/No regrets, not upset – I’m just sayin’ ‘I never knew you!/And my mama tries the best she can to raise a man/But it’s you I really need, please help me understand why/You never came by, to see about your son/Tears used to run down my cheek but now I can’t cry/Cuz I been hardened by your absence, the passage of time/Will make a mind grow callous, in the worst way/You never made my birthdays so now I’ve learned my lesson/No longer close my eyes in front of the cake just wishing for your presence/I mean that from the bottom of my heart but the truth is/If I saw you I wouldn’t know whether to hit you or hug you/So confused, all because I’m missing a piece to this puzzle/That’s how you feel when you haven’t got a father to love you

This is me talking right now, some issues of my own/Got some nerve writin’ ‘P.S.’ and saying it was about a song/Gotta own up to my own fears of being scared to drop a seed/Am I crazy, I mean really, what’s wrong with me?/I’m responsible but the man that I have grown to be/Is terrified to be a father, so I’m thinking, why bother/Tried to leave it at the altar at church one Sunday morning/But Monday I realized, I gotta face this for myself/Wife is saying now or never, family saying kids are treasures/But I’m not ready for my life to change, how do you measure/the preparedness of a person when the pressure seems to worsen/it’s like I’m ready but I’m not/like I’m racing against a clock/when I got goals and I got dreams that have yet to be achieved/must I put them on the back burner the moment we conceive?/that’s the problem though-it’s all I, I’m being too selfish/one time for anybody who remembers the day that they felt this

With all these insecurities I’m praying “God, grant me peace”/these demons I’m fighting, got me pacin’, got me writin’/when got somebody in you that I could strive to be/maybe that’s why I’m so scared because I can’t see/how I could live up to the standard that you’ve set as a father/could I nurture mine as you did? What’s the best that I can offer?/all the times that you were there for me, molded me so carefully/the times I didn’t listen, you and mama said a prayer for me/and I’d love nothing more than to do that for my seed you see/but I ain’t like that, I’m scared I’ll want my life back/and that’s not very fatherly, I know and so this bothers me/I know it’s wrong but these emotions are so raw for me/more than a song because these doubts won’t back up off of me/I’m not alone, but yet I feel like an anomaly/so I should probably end transmission right now/no more writin’ bout it, I gotta man up and face it/but thanks Pops….

Hiphop and Fatherhood

Little Brother, All For You (The Minstrel Show)

Lupe Fiasco, He Say, She Say (Food & Liquor)

T.I., I Still Luv U verses 2 & 3 (Trap Muzik)

Common, Retrospect For Life (One Day It’ll All Make Sense)

Tupac, Letter 2 My Unborn (Until the End of Time)

 

Be eazy.

MM#5: Extraordinary (feat. Praverb the Wyse)

November 6, 2011

Why is it so hard to be great? We all dream of becoming extraordinary individuals, exceeding expectations and leaving a legacy…but of course, it’s never quite that simple. This song (produced by One Love Beats, by the way) has motivational feel to it…the type of track I could listen to when I wake up each morning to take on the day. I just want to be extraordinary! “The music feeds my hunger”….what feeds/motivates you? Shoutout to the brotha Praverb the Wyse on the feature…he’s a rock-solid lyricist. You should check his music at http://www.praverb.net.

Here’s a motivational speech by Charlie Chaplin in the film “The Great Dictator”…be inspired! I think the message here is harmonious with the general spirit of this song. Audio of song and lyrics are also below.

Charlie Chaplin’s Final Speech in “The Great Dictator”:

Audio:

Lyrics:

Hook: “Good morning it’s a lovely day/I’m sayin’ ‘man I gotta find a way’/I just wanna be extraordinary, I just gotta be extraordinary” (x2)

Verse 1: The irony of people admiring me is I try to be/Better than they’d expect from they pictures of success/Witnessing much stress and at times it gets grotesque/I never protest ‘cuz I know that I’m so blessed/Focus, with the dawning of a new day, I cherish the time/I date with destiny and marry the grind/Various times that I couldn’t see, my inner me had synergy/With He that lives within me, so my enemies can’t injure me/Humility is what I build on, I’m still a work in progress/I know my weakness so I’m still strong, real song/And I got bills due, not studyin’ no deals dude/The music feeds my hunger, I consider it real food/Spittin’ that real rap, it’s like they don’t even feel you/The industry will kill you before you reveal the real you/That’s why I’m looking at the world through my rearview/It’s just the frame of mind that I’m choosing to peer through

(HookX2)

Verse 2 (Praverb the Wyse): Tired of plain clothes, tired of kicking lame flows/Detail what’s inside, let the pain grow/Focus on the approach and try to save souls/I use my lens on the world and let the frame grow/Great expectations, no entitlement, life is a journey with canteen survival kits/Strive for education, achieve success/Dedication, yes! The need to be blessed/Spit real in a world without decency left/Make a living, millions speaking through text/So I dream large, wanting to be a screen star/Star on the screen instead of spitting some clean bars/Give praise to God when things seem hard/Pray for smooth sailings, but things seem scarred/I reach out during the time of need, thank God I survived the streets/Survive with ease…

(HookX2)

Verse 3: Magnificent, marvelous, maniacal martyrs/We die for the cause or just to harbor a harvest/Break backs to make stacks, then max and take that/And send it to whoever you owe just to pay back/Debts and student loans we been owing since way back/To keep that motivation I keep dreaming of Maybachs/I wanna be extraordinary but maybe I am already/I’m trying to be everything if you let me/And I’m gone…

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