Representin’ (4 Life) by Adrian H. Molina w/ Mannequin Rituals first appeared on Representin’ 4 Life EPin March 2007. It was re-released on my first full-length album, Up Before the Sunrise, August 2008.
My main goal with my first EP was to clearly define my work as an artist, to define what I represented.
Sometimes I sit on a cloud andthink… Me inside of you… you inside me…
A simple but retrospective track, tracing roots, paying homage, showing respect to some of the people, and thus all of the people, who made me who I am.
The art of storytelling boils down to the ability to capture a feeling, to pull in a listener and make them feel you. To transport them into your world, weaving them seamlessly back into their own world, then back again, in and out, continuously, beyond the story itself.
Circle back to one of many beginnings. It was November 4th, 2006. I had the opportunity to open for Saul Williams at the University of Wyoming. Will Ross was running sound for ASTEC—the University of Wyoming’s student government sponsored production team.
I knew of Will, having run into him continuously at UW events, but we had never really had a meaningful conversation.
While running sound, Will recorded my performance on his mini-disc recorder. Young Brown Poet lit him up, and the next day he emailed the vocal track to Dustin Neal, his fellow band-mate and co-founder of CHiTT Productions.
Out of nowhere, I got an email from Will, telling me to check out a rough mix of Dustin’s vision of Young Brown Poet. Will explained how he had sent the track to Dustin in the morning, who ran home over his lunch hour and recorded music to the words. Will mixed it down.
I was floored by what I heard. Completely unexpected.
Mass deception, coups d’etats left and right, shared confusion, no way to tell what’s real and what’s fake—a collective inability to ascertain truth from lies because the spin doctors are that good.
Polar ice caps melting, mass global poverty ignored, apocalyptic natural disasters, conspiracies linking what was once natural to what is now claimed to be man-made. Seemingly no empirical way to make sense of it all, so the masses don’t even try. They just wait for 2012.
As MLK Day 2010 comes to a close, I am reminded of my responsibility as an emcee. I walk in many shoes and wear many hats. I use my music to entertain, to educate, to inspire, to provoke thought, to create controversy. These lines often intersect and sometimes they become blurry. I don’t expect everyone to support everything I do. At the end of the day, I am accountable first and foremost to myself.