Posts Tagged ‘Song’

Some tracks just resonate with you. These are the ones that get stuck in your head, or you find yourself quoting lyrics from them, or — the most telling tale — you keep playing them over and over again because they move and inspire, as Landmark Education would describe this feeling. That’s why I make “compilations” of tunes every year; even the year I said I was going to stop making compilations, I made a compilation. I just didn’t make physical copies with custom covers and inserts and liner notes, which takes hours and days and months to perfect, in 2008 or — most likely — in 2009. I give them away for free because they’re my way of communicating. It’s a way to say something along the lines of “here’s what I played for myself all of this year; hope you like some of it” in a palpable format.

What’s a real trip is letting this sink in: I have been making these compilations every year for 12+ years now. That is just a count of the official, main compilations; sometimes more than one disc, but always tuned to fit on an audio CD (OK the Old Skool Hip Hop McGee Mix can’t, but there are always exceptions). There are adjunct comps, live mixes, bootlegs, extra cuts that couldn’t quite make it, times I didn’t record while spinning to an international audience on the Mordenkainen’s Parlour stream, and practice stuff — some of which I recorded and some of which I didn’t.

When engaged in the constant act of choosing music you like for 12+ years on a day-by-day basis, you know what you like and what you don’t like. Everybody does that. That is why everybody is a DJ. The crucial difference is that I recorded it. This fact sets me apart from the rest of the amateur record-scratchers and mix-tapers. Why don’t you go pull out one of your old mix tapes or CDs, or an old .m3u playlist and try to understand what you were thinking about when you felt passionate — or bored — enough to actually press the record button and pick some songs in a particular order. Or did you give them all away to potential booty calls?

Songs become old friends when you play them enough. Ensconced between the lyrics and the bassline, the drums and the swells, a personal soundtrack has embedded itself into the fabric of the music. Playing certain tracks is evocative to you in a way that nobody else is going to get just like you. Sharing these particular musical missives with others is, I believe, a fundamental art form. That’s why I do it.

So when I spend hours listening to my compilations, in order or on shuffle play, it has become something akin to going to church. The best way that I can be a Shaman for everyone is to bring something back; that is certain compositions of music, perhaps in a certain order. I love these sermons. Because I recorded them myself of myself in space and time. When I press record, I realize that it is a positive, creative, wonderful thing that I have the cojones to take a deep breath and go live for posterity.

I.
There was a woman
Who I loved with all my heart.
It’s the only way
I know how
to love.
The problem I have
With falling in love
Is that I just keep falling
And falling on through.
It’s a perpetual autumn;
Storming leaves of memories,
Possibilities,
Skeletal trees.
And turning my collar up
Against the cold of this world.
Holding my hands out
To the warmth of the fire
That we had kindled
To keep the darkness at bay.
Every time these things end
I look up from the glow
Of the smolder, the embers,
For the ignition of a smile,
That familiar, beloved synching
Eyes to eyes:
It’s just understood
We’ll revel in the work
To pile on more fuel
From our common woodpile.
But nobody is there
Across the coals from me;
I’ve fallen through
The bottleneck of the hourglass
Along with all these ashes.

II.
Songs get tied
Like complicated knots
Around my feelings;
They remind me of how
I used to think about forever.
Some are bright blossoms
Stolen from yards
On the way to your window
In the middle of the night
To kneel and present you
With a moonlit bouquet,
My Juliet.
Another is the crosshatching
Of spray painted poetry
Hanging in midair
Amongst the tree branches
Between the shadows
Of the stars that were ours;
Witchcraft and wizardry
For an unrelenting passion.
Tapestries of smoke
And of tie-dyed freedom;
Soft paws of haloed kittens,
The chocolate and the champagne
Of the once in a lifetime.
Threads on a magick loom
Synchronicity unparalleled,
Spiderwebs like a hammock,
An embrace as if I was coming home;
Touch burning like the fire of a faerie,
Or the resurrection of the phoenix,
Tracing sigils in the sky,
Re-ignition of belief
Like a firestarter
Or finding a soulmate.
I am haunted
By the breadth of my music
And the depth of my commitment.
The failure
of my eyesight.

III.
The carnage is absolute;
A battlefield strewn with my corpses,
Beer cans and shrieks and cigarette butts,
The best of intentions and
The stench of taking things for granted.
These raw wounds
I have sustained over my lifetime
Of loving how I should have been loved
Never seem to heal;
They just ooze and pulse
Making heartbeats painful;
A crazy accumulation of luggage
Like owning an airport carousel
Of baggage you can’t strip off.
It just grows with you,
Older and less attractive,
Smelling faintly of urine and gangrene
When you can’t bear
To perform the required surgery.
It hurts too much;
I’ll excise memories I want to keep
Along with the decaying flesh.
Retrospective or post-mortem;
It’s still the death of a relationship
That I thought would live forever
As if I had infinite chances,
Infinite quarters.

IV.
I was pinned to a mortarboard
Like a butterfly from a caterpillar,
When I had to eulogize my friend;
My brother, my partner-in-crime,
Someone who understood
By the merit of not being female
The depth of love and an enduring relationship.
I don’t ever want to do that again.
It is the same with love;
I know I can, and it will be better,
But the pain of losing someone to provoke that work
Is too much to accept;
Besides, who the fuck will do that for me?
The answer is as clear as hindsight:
20-20.
I listened to my voice echo hollow through a church
That he wouldn’t have appreciated
To the people who were left behind,
And became even more haunted.
I did my best to represent,
Tell tales, romanticize, believe
And I went home with ashes in my mouth
To cry, cry out, want to evaporate,
Disappear, erase myself from existing
Because I had lost something precious:
A true friend.
It’s a lot like losing your love
Because you have lost a friend.

V.
The light switch is off.
This is the eye of the storm for me.
Now I deal with the still shatter of leaves,
The cold of being alone,
And shoving my hands into the campfire.
There is no warmth.
This destroys the fabric of memories
That took deep commitment
And sweat equity;
Deeper resources than I had without you.
And I see them all retreat,
As if they never existed;
Vanish into the thin, thin air
That I breathe.
Flatlined.

VI.
To move along,
Because there is nothing to see here;
It’s a pretty penance,
My cross to bear;
One that gets weightier
The more years I carry forward,
This boulder I am pushing uphill.
It’s that lost luggage from the carousel;
It’s those old wounds from the battlefield;
It’s those lyrics of happier times
When I would write, compose, sing
Of how I loved being in love
And how I expected forever
But you only had right now to give.

VII.
Perspective is a function of wisdom,
Which is a byproduct of experience,
That is what happens when you live and die
Through these things.
Perhaps they build character;
Actually, they create defense mechanisms
To try to prevent this from happening again
And again.
Expectations collapse
And you lay bricks and mortar in the fortress
That you think will keep you safe
But not sound;
You all are quite persuasive.
Certainly isolated
In the aftermath
Of bequeathing your everything —
Heart, mind, soul —
To your everything
Around that campfire
And you look up and discover
That she is long gone.

So the track’s float-flowin’ like the brew from the tap,
street-lethal cracka comin’ straight steppin’ attack.
I’m through messin’ with the system, gonna go my own route,
off-road past the Sphinx, Pyramids and I’m out.
There’s nothin’ but sand dunes as far as I can see;
no water or camel, the crazy diamond’s with me.
The sun’s droppin’ like a stone but still hotter than hell but
[here’s a little story that I’ve gots to tell] -Beastie Boys.
Three days ago, a cantina in Cairo —
I smoked my last hash and I’m runnin’ out of dough,
a man got shot, and he fell in my lap.
Bleedin’ on my jacket, he slipped me a sack.
Three thugs with scimitars come in through the gate.
Dyin’ guy starts firin’ so I made my escape,
so I find myself lost in the alleys and streets;
a turban cold creeps, so I put out his teeth.
Grabbed a tire iron from the back of a truck;
I took a look in the bag: a gem as big as a rock.
Glowing from inside, some ethereal quality —
I closed up my loot because I hear someone follow me.
Spent the night wide awake in the flat of this hooker,
paranoid in the john when the Thugee mistook her
for me in those sheets; she was kind, I was saddened
but I was out of the window to the awning like Aladdin.
They left one chump and the keys in the jeep
so I broke his head open then I sped up the street.
Over my shoulder I saw them Thugee come out,
waving wicked knives and they’re rather put out.
I wrecked the jeep into a fruit cart…
hoodlums on my heels but I’ve got a head start.
Slip throught the marketplace to a sidewalk cafe,
pasta sea swarthy faces, I made my way
to the rear of the joint, looking for the back door.
If I owned a Fedora, I’d feel like Harrison FOrd.
Indiana Jones and the Diamond of Despair.
I’ve got about ten minutes to find a new lair
where I can wait for the heat to die down…
dusk is a must to get out of town.
Two chairs and a table in the darkest corner,
the Gelato Vera of Cairo, all I need is a mocha.
Sweat pouring from my brow as I watch the front
for any sign, any signal or warning of chumps
and then I pause…I feel a knife in my ribs.
“Hand over the parcel and you might just live.
Reach slow — real slow — or in hell you’ll be fryin’”
so I reached in my jack for the sack with the diamond.
I put it out on the table; he stepped from the shade,
sat down in the other chair and polished his blade.
This is straight from the movies is what I thought,
He’s too damn pleased that I went and got caught.
Fat boy opens his mouth like he’s going to speak;
he looks over my shoulder and his knees go weak.
I don’t think, I grab the sack and I’m hittin’ the deck;
a hail of bullets breaks out and hits Homes in the neck.
Cafe screaming, blood’s spilling as the splinters are flying;
I’m crawling for the door — there’s no farm that I’m buying.
I get up and start running with the scared folk,
but there’s a shirtless Thugee waitin’ and the mo-fo is yoked.
I grab a pan in my hand to the side of his skull —
he blinks twice and shook his head — it didn’t faze him at all.
He reached for my arms so I went through his legs man.
I’m smooth, just like the Eggman.
Tall brick alleys with nowhere to go,
but I’ve got the crazy diamond and my life, though.
(to be continued…)

To the hip-hop rhythm of my break-beat bounce
I sing sun stars surf stoopid something amounts
To a funky fresh freestyle flowing fast and far
from the breakers to the speakers in the trunk of your car.
I get a little sparkle like the wind in my eye
When the sun is shining steady from the stretch of the sky.
Outside doubles dating skating surfing and tanning
Hacky-sacking frisbee throwing bubble blowing — outstanding!
Groove, move and schmoove like a rubberband.
Take a dip in the drink and dry out on the sand…

Love is the drug
that opiates me nowadays
to fend through this morass
of doing what’s to do.

Love and Nicotine,
not pen and paper,
heart and dreams
laid out, a mindsong
to read.

a cling-to-my-sanity Love,
no Woodstock peace and
fuck-your-neighbor crap.
“She’s an Angel
of the first degree…”

And while I grip my head
to quell my own rising laughter
at my inability
to find a self-esteem,

I pray to the mirrors
of other people
who find worth in me.

You wanna know what? You wanna know what?
You look mighty stupid with my foot in your butt.
I cut like X-acto and I’m stronger than stone
and you’re the fucking chicken from Aames Home Loan;
always being rescued, always being bailed out,
but no amount of money gives you my type of clout.
You’re soft like a Kleenex™ on your weakly old track.
Your tongue’s only good for licking my sack.

Give me a beat and a drum and a mike
and I’m guaranteed to break down something you’ll like
because I ain’t a mystery and yes I’ve got the history;
that girl on your arm — she just blew a kiss at me.
What’s on your mind? you wanna battle me, boy?
I’ll wind you up and break you like a Tonka™ toy.
I never know whether to laugh or be sick
when I see you walking ‘round, grabbing your dick,
blowing your nose, soiling your clothes
and paying all those people to come to your shows.
I’ll step to you and put your pea-brain to the test.
I’d like to see you swim wicked witch of the west.
I run the show like I’m Captain Kirk.
On the street I’m known as DJ Lurk.
Rhyming and stealing from all types of scene:
nothing is safe from my sample machine.
Sortof like Aliens got acid for blood,
I got funk in my veins and your name is mud.
Five years from now my shit’s still in
while your CD’s are filling up the bargain bin.
But I let you go, let you run away.
Hide in your home and practice all day.
Come back tomorrow or Saturday,
or do you have to ask if you can come out and play?

I was fucking born with a mike in my hand,
that’s why I’m named Mike, do you understand?
Let me rock the party, just slam the groove,
and we’ll see how many fat asses I can move.
Jumping out their seats and wiggling their hips.
Smiling like Erik Estrada on CHiPs.
Turn it around with a likkle house sound;
all those silly sucker still suits get clowned.
I mosh and I mumble, I drink and I stumble;
turn up the bass ‘till the foundations crumble.
I can rock a party ‘till the break of dawn.
My mind is so sharp it can mow your lawn.
Kick lyrical footballs to pop out your eyeballs;
invite your friends over to put holes in the drywall.
I said I’ve got a serious flair on the mike.
Do you want a lick of my ice cream? Psych!

My rhymes are built to give you something to purr on.
I’ve got tricks up my sleeves when I ain’t got a shirt on
and just when you think I’m all through . . .
I catch another beat and I pound me a Mountain Dew™.
Wired on caffeine, vicious and lean,
an eliminating terminating rapping machine.
I’m a wild man Bigfoot and I’m getting prepared
by kicking back Schaefers™ with Bela Fehér.
I’m a screaming kamikaze on a technopop track;
the needle in the haystack, gett off my bozack.
Give me a break beat, my mike will destroy.
I’m a wannabe member of the Beastie Boys.
Party people in the place, doowhatchyalike.
Funky rhythms, straight talk and such ya like.
So I give it to you straight from the soul . . .
have another beer, then lose control!

Stepping to me, you’d better come correct
because the Mission Hills posse’s always in effect.
When I rap upon the mike you’d better shake a leg;
this jam’s so hot you could fry an egg.
I’m a lyrical spherical diabolical demon.
I’m so glad to be here — I must be dreaming.
Y’all out there having a good time?
Well I’m about to rip out a funky rhyme!
I’m a party playing, roof-raising Point Loma rebel,
and the school administration thinks that I am the Devil.
I never will slow down, I’m back in my home town,
the suburbs to downtown, here comes the lowdown:
a shotgun tongue but I’m always nice.
My back’s always covered by OB Vice.
I’m coming, I’m coming, I’m coming for you;
make your booty do things you didn’t know it could do.
That’s the idea, guys, get out here and dance.
If you wait too long you’re going to miss your chance.
The walls are built to stand all on their own,
get your dérriere out here and shake your bones.
Yo, the building doesn’t need support
now get busy like my brother MC Alex Kohrt.
I’m a poet of freestyle, my lyrics are worthwhile
I get paid every day making other people smile.
A magician of attrition in the MC arena.
I wanna dye my hair like Jerry Medina.
Who’s in the house? I am, that’s who.
I’m always in the mood for curing your blues.
Pass me the bud and the pipe and I’ll toke it.
Wipe off the blood from the mike and I’ll smoke it.
You know I’m getting lethal, yo, word is born,
and now my boy John Roy will get dumb on his horn.

I don’t get paid much, but I stay in touch:
that color you’re claiming? Your bloodshed’s still red.
It doesn’t take a man to pull a trigger, loc.
It takes an education to use the mike to smoke
silly suckers that walk up on me,
get played razorblade by my tongue, G.
So leave that shit at the door with your worries,
and shake your body on the floor in a hurry.
I got skills, I got bills but you do, too.
So let’s see what type of boogie-business you can do.
Vocal acrobatics coming out my speakers,
speaking to your spine, your shoulders and your sneakers.
Get to know your neighbors, don’t pick and choose.
Be obnoxious like my boy Kevin Bacon in Footloose.
So pump your fist if you like the sound;
I’m a disco inferno, and I’m coming to your town.
i got a polyester shirt and the collar could kill you.
“Good Times” in my eight track, my mind’s gonna thrill you.
Fresh artistic sleight of hand —
you’ve got a real jive show from the one man band.
I’m out of here soon, I’ve got to watch me some cartoons;
I eat my Lucky Charms™ with a ladle or soup spoon
and just when you think I’m comin’ wack . . .
I’m gone with the diamonds like Camel Jack!

Meatgrinder (Version 2)

Posted: March 1, 1994 in Poetry
Tags: , , , ,

I get wicked like the wickedest man alive.
I stick your head in my window, roll it up and I drive
your ass around your own block so you all know;
I’ll stick your face to the wall like a gecko.
You’re always trying to come off like you’re hard, son,
but you start from square one, you’re poor like a bum.
I don’t want to upset you, but I know that I do
because I can’t help but point out what I know is true.
You can’t rhyme, you can’t wrestle and it’s nonsense;
you don’t believe in what you say and it’s not making dents.
I put on my glasses, I studied your track
and I filed it in the dumpster — definition of wack.
You’re so high, G; you’re played out, see?
And you get nowhere fast fueled on your hypocracy.
You think you’d look as good as I do?
I think a Doberman or two would suit you and your crew
of sellout suckers, they lie to themselves every day:
you say you’re from Compton but never been to L.A.
Listen to Cube and chikkity-check yourself;
you’re a Balsa wood glider trying to battle the Stealth.
Don’t push it too far, ‘cause you’re out of your league —
you’re a rodent Roger Ramjet and I got your ass treed.
You don’t want to feel humiliated? Get the fuck out
because I’ll meatgrind you, pork boy, ‘cause I got the clout.

Now I’ve got your attention, I see your ears are cockin’,
like the Sugar Hill Gang I don’t stop the rockin’ to the
tick tock I don’t pack a glock because my tongue’s a lethal weapon
I can kill when I rock.
But why add another MC to the list of my killings
when I’d rather reform you to the art if you’re willing.
I could loose your caboose from the rest of the pack
or put some sense in your skull with a backhanded smack.
I don’t say I’m from the Ghetto ‘cause I’m not from there;
you’re formatted for pop and it’s sad that you don’t care.
As long as you’re a gangster, a hustler, a pimp;
mack dady loc biscuit-eating knucklehead shrimp.
You might have fooled yourself that your fans believe you.
Fool yourself again when they wise up and leave you.
When the circus is in town I might go see you clowns
while they’re hammering the lids of their own coffins down.
Pay a lot of money to make people believe,
but that falls flat, New Jack, against the Trick up my sleeve.
A scandal vandal man with my hands — they’re slammin’
and your rinkety-dinkety jam falls short ‘cause you’re shamming.
I might wobble like a weeble to the fresh guitar licks,
but your track couldn’t hack it, even with a remix.
You’re jealous of my posse ‘cause they’re people I trust
but your records don’t bust it . . . they only go bust!

I said I’m the meatgrinder, I’ll grind you like meat
I see fear in your eyes because you’re smelling defeat.
Get funky from my feet to the birds and the bees,
from the buildings and trees to the rivers and seas.
Swaying back and forth like a hypnotized cobra,
one snap of my fingers and your dream state’s over.
I never really mind when the weaklings, they dis me.
I never seem to care that your girl wants to kiss me.
But keep it all in check, man, like you know you should —
now go bandage your ego, tramp . . . it’s all good.

I got the hip hop flavor, bouncing around to the beat;
you see I’m never quite finished, grab yourself a seat.
Get a little bit of popcorn get yourself a soda.
You’re a wannabe Jedi, and I’m like Yoda.
If you’re gonna get excited do us all a favor
shut your fuckin’ mouth and fall on your light saber.
Sometimes I think that I am wasting my time,
trying to teach a nincompoop like you how to rhyme.
But I’m a poet and a prankster, the airwaves gangster.
I got the flying vocal guillotine and you can call me master.
Now I’m on line and I’ll get you in trouble.
Like Fred Flintstone you’re always fooled by Barney Rubble.
You’ve got monetary clout and you think you know what to say
but I grind meat like you for a living each day.
Like a chicken you’re plucked and you’re shit out of luck
feeling like three pounds of fat ground chuck.

Of course you’re right and I’m an amature wrong
but I prefer not to fall like a boulder, King Kong.
I’m more like Godzilla with his nuclear breath:
I melt every motherfuck I put to the test.
I couldn’t give a damn about the way you dance;
some aerobics instructor in circus tent pants.
I got the kick drum humming from my MTX eights.
Golden sun is gleaming from my California license plates.
Sitting back sunny from the south, San Diego,
sculpting rhymes from my my mind as if it was Play-Dough.
Then I get the call when my Bat-Phone rings;
the room’s illuminated by the searchlight with wings.
The President’s on the line “the madman’s escaped!
He’s taking people’s money, do whatever it takes!”
So I eat a bowl of Wheaties ‘cause I’m coming to find ya,
‘cause I’m the one and only motherfucking meatgrinder.