Relax with BlackLinen3.0


Situation: Based on a True Story.

Mood: Feeling Free and Gliding.

Inspiration: Relax from Blacklinen3.0 Project.

Writing Status: Post written in first person because it was personal.

Location: #QCBC, Charlotte, NC.

Sometimes, artists have nothing to prove to me.Several of the musical or artistic man dem and gal dem hit me up on Instagram or Facebook and honestly I’m not sure what to do . Unfortunately, I tend to ignore or delay because nothing needs to be forced. My spirit leads me to my next post unapologetically, so welcome to this particular one which I’m compelled to scribe on 4/20/2018. With artists, I typically advise a first and last meeting so I can look into the artist’s soul. The internet is rife and full to the brim of people’s lost souls, so it’s equally important to find a pure one to write about.Remember, I don’t like looking at cameras because my eyes are the gateway to my soul.Why should I reveal my soul and expose myself to strangers?Anyway, being from Zimbabwe, Africa, typically we are typically distrustful of foreign travelers or normads from distant tribes or homesteads. We would rather be distant from the lens or voice recorders that might pass untrue statements to our foes – spiritual and physical.In any case, many fold to the noise of society without realizing one should only respond only to signals. Blacklinen was not barking noise as many do but provided a shattering, poignant, reflective and reverberating signal – so I responded. I was in a car ride to see the man dem when an Instagram connection spiritually converted itself into the physical.After a quick phone call, a humble, dark-skinned, dreadhead brother popularly known as Blakcklinen emerged. On our way to the studio, a chill Charlotte rap song called Relax commenced play. Riding through the Queen City boulevards to pass by a local studio, it’s sad we have to drive past countless homeless people. We won’t go into the reasons for them being homeless and why they are in their situation. It just makes me sad. homelessness and mental health should be everyone’s problem. In our tribe, we don’t leave people on the side of the street. We offer a helping hand because anyone can get a pink slip. Anyone can be marginalized or separated from comfort.Anyway. Back to the song.I had no idea what the track was about, but I decided to listen as carefully, deliberately and as intently as I could. Here are some noble excerpts extracted after a dozen plays during my day at the lab today:

Just Relax, Just relax,

Just Relax, Just Relax, Just Relax!

It’s a good day in the neighborhood,

I’m here in the crib burning Sandalwood,

Feeling good like I knew I would….

🔄

Played this track and got right to it………

……..I’m trying to live like every day,

Because everyday is a special occasion……..

🔄

…….Don’t go too long,

Face the storm,

Be patient, you gotta hold on.

…………We off the roof, sitting in the canopy,

I wish you could see how brothers see.

I wish you could feel how a brother feel,

When the sun really ain’t really down on me……..

🔄 ft. Merck

…..Just relax, Keep your cool!

Why you think a n**** ride with the crew?

Coz You know I gotta play by the rules……..

….. Guaranteed we will not lose….

In conclusion, there’s a reason Charlotte isn’t called Atlanta, GA like people like to compare it to. Charlotte’s her own person. She’s a Queen. She’s chilled and she’s relaxed. As you conclude this short read, why don’t you just relax? I specifically don’t want to continue with a long absorbing post about my experience with this project because like I hinted, some artists’ work speaks for itself through its written and performed art.African brothers who put their mind and soul into their passion are rare, so I’m grateful and delighted to have a front row seat to the renaissance and emergence of Charlotte Hip Hop and more specifically, Blacklinen’s Artwork compiled in seven tracks.I’m confident you’ll take a moment to experience the compilation with me. What did I do after listening to Relax? I did the following and you should follow suit:——Per blacklinen.bandcamp.com:The Album continues Black Linen’s socially conscious themes in tracks such as the poignant “MAP,” which begins with an audio clip from the 1982 documentary All By Myself: The Eartha Kitt Story, in which the Catwoman speaks on whether conflicts can be solved without violence: “Naturally, as a woman and as a mother, I feel if you give love that you will receive love in return.” The clip morphs gently into Black Linen rhyming, in his trademark laid-back delivery, “She said that she don’t have time to waste / She got to go, she can’t be late / Her train waiting, she gots to make it / On the other side is a fat ride / And a big crib, with money to play with.”………..©️ SonofGuruvé2018

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Kyrie vs. David


Arani’s was just saying whatup to the long bearded wise Samson when his spirit collided with that of his college comrade, Kyrie the other week.

Before inhaling a Newport cigarette bummed off the homeless man, Arani asked,

“Yo, what’s good bruh – You know who you look like fam?”

Kyrie responded,

“Well, people be saying I look like Kyrie”.

Arani responded,

“Nah man, you look like OJ Da Juice man…….actually no. That’s not it, you look like Gucci Mane eeyyy! “

The sharing and laughter ensued and introductions were smooth-sailing. Kyrie was so chill, calm, cool, collected and most importantly – sober.

You see, when the good vibe man dem and gal dem are in honest conversation it flows like the Uber that’s a swift five minutes away. There’s nothing that needs to be forced – because real recognizes real. Interactions and first impressions are increasingly important for young people searching for a voice these days or more so because the tribe realizes it stronger than ever. This is where the #TribeofGuruve steps in.

We exist to give those African princes and princesses the voice they don’t have – except our voice is mute and written. Please remember that Jane Good-Hall said everybody is from Africa so don’t exclude yourself if you’re not physically from Africa.

Africans come in all colors and sizes and most importantly they all bleed red.

Nonetheless, in parting exchanges, Kyrie said he was going to get dunked in some water in a couple of days.

All Arani had to say was,

“Ait. Bet, I’ll be there Gucci!”

Arani, had no idea how he would make it because the Uber cost $22 according to his cracked iPhone screen. Coupled with his writing spirit, a second hand iPad and a hope to get Wi-Fi, Arani headed over to the gathering where this alleged dunking ceremony was scheduled to occur at 1130am.

Arani hadn’t been there for a long time because of the Uber cost, and buses don’t go there on Sundays, but he went anyway. He knew this day would be pivotal to building the trust and relationship with Gucci Mane or Kyrie as he likes to be referred.

This post isn’t going to be long or absorbing, but rather to touch the surface of the subject called Kyrie.

Remember when Arani introduced Nobleman’s LB? Well, this time it wasn’t him speaking, but another KDlike brother from Oklahoma. Shoutout to the old big 3 of the Thunder. Arani still wanders what would have happened if KD stayed with the bearded gentlemen now at the Rockets, but then again, everybody has to find their own path in this journey we collectively call life, right?

So Arani hopped out the Uber wearing his workout gear including a white Paris St. Germain Matuidi jersey, black shorts and some colorful shoes with a tick. Not sure what they are called, but he also had his @AfrikansUnited blood red hat.

Arani deliberately decided to ignore the stares of some Pharisees dressed in their Sunday best. The truth is he wasn’t there for them except the dunking ceremony featuring our very own Kyrie also known as David and also known as _____________.

*I leave it blank so you can figure out his name when we reveal what he said at the end, so keep reading.

Towards the end of his testimonial, Kyrie’s shrieking voice heavy and weakening lowered into a spiritual, but evident whisper. His voice regained itself brevity, became heavy again, course and everyone could tell it was the first time he uttered the words that followed.

He spoke highly and proudly of his family, his new lease on life and made an announcement. He joyfully shared breaking news about the new contract he had just signed after his former career as a free agent.

Meanwhile, Arani couldn’t hold back his warm tears because he knew in that very moment, he had been Kyrie too – a couple of years before.  He remembered when the Nobleman helped him sign a deal – just not with the devil, but quite the opposite. Arani’s life has never been same ever since, but you would have to read Anikulapo’s Tales of the Diaspora to unravel what he was like before.

Without warning to Arani (because Arani wasn’t paying attention), the slim-tee wearing man supporting Kyrie through the ceremony suddenly dunked him under water.

Under water.

Under water.

Under freaking water y’all!

Kyrie says he emerged a new man.

His tears drenched and overcome by whatever liquid was poured in there.

As written above, it was just water before you start some ungodly rumor.

Nonetheless, pause and think about what water does for the human body. Well it is 2/3s of it, right?

Think about its value as a resource to humanity, then think about African deserts where it is scarce and children perishing of thirst. Think about what it represents for one’s soul to be cleansed and reawakened overnight. That’s what happened to Kyrie. In that moment, a caterpillar that was slithering into a slow death because of its refusal to drink water surrendered and it soared into the sky and became a butterfly – stinging like a bee.

-RIP Muhammad Ali

Apparently Kyrie had just won the biggest game of his career. Forget the high school groupies, the sexy college cheer leaders, the fading identity, and the fellow service members he served with. It’s more like he had survived the most formidable challenge of his short lived, hazardous and zigzagging experience.

Life.

But hail!

Order was restored because the right team won this time. Many don’t understand what it’s like to walk in others’ basketball shoes because they don’t have the time and tend to focus on their own game. How can you understand anyone if you don’t take a moment to ask how they are, and where they’ve been? What teams they’ve played on and how they practiced that jump shot. You can’t know everything of course, but in your quest to help others, walk in their shoes even if just for a couple of hours. It’s only then that you can be understanding of the circumstances. At a minimum try your best.

Just try.

Arani knew writing this story might give people an appreciation of Kyrie’s shoes because it is full of horror, dread, guilt, violence, loss, alcohol, depression and the most rewarding of all – redemption and a story we hope to learn about in it’s full glory. Regenerate SonofGuruvé is just a mixtape.

Kyrie dried himself became luminous and wearing his new armor and new sponsorship gear, he embraced his friends, family and lastly Arani. Arani was actually hired to be the cameraman – if he showed up. Actually that’s not true. Arani assumed the position of cameraman and hopefully one day, ghostwriter for the man who either sang Twenty Four Hours (s/o to @kasedrexler for reminding us about the song) or the man that won the NBA, Championship with that pulsating three-pointer that sank the Warriors that year. If you forgot, here you go:

Kyrie and his ride-or-die squad strolled towards the special VIP court-side seats set aside for them in the gathering. A freestyling brother began to deliver some real life-changing heat for the streets to be honest.

Here are six game plan points I jotted down:

  1. If anointed, it happens in private. When Coach gives you the next play, does he announce it to his opponents? No!
  2. If anointed, you are positioned. Is it Point Guard, Bigman, Shooting guard or do you want to be on the Bench?
  3. When anointed, you are an answer to a problem. Remember the GOAT – Allen Iverson. Remember the AND1s? The Question was the Answer.
  4. Your Opportunity will be wrapped in obedience. You ever purchased some sneakers that aren’t in a box or packaging? No. If you obey and follow the instructions they will be shipped in a wrapped box or package. Just Obey. #TrustYaProcess, so special shoutout to the Sixers in Philly. We coming soon Joel and you too Gwi!
  5. You will be elevated through obstacle. You think when Kyrie won that game for the Cavs, it was easy? Heck No! He faced an unimaginable obstacle but I’m sure he’s done that in practice a hundred times. All the hard work in the gym happens when no one’s watching. You wasn’t with me shooting in the gym – Lol – I know you see what I did there.
  6. Last one. Simple – You must be YOU. Don’t conform to others. If they turn on you, you’re in good company. Does that even need explaining? If so, go back to the beginning of the post and start again until you get it. Hint. It’s CAPITALIZED for a reason.

Anyway, one day, you’ll get to read Kyrie’s Playbook or as many will call it Trevor’s Manuscript.

Have a great weekend, and if you’re still a free agent, I’m sorry but we gotta talk. You can’t be out here not knowing what team you play on.

Here’s a parting quote from Kyrie:

I want people to know there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Having faith and staying in accord with God will have you overcoming demons and obstacles that man couldn’t even begin to start giving you. Stay loyal, stay true and don’t sweat the 🦋 after you diss the 🐛. That’s my go to phrase lol

©️ SonofGuruvé 2018

Anikulapo


“Defend ideas. Not people. Never defend people. People are fickle, complicated. And even when you defend ideas, interrogate them until they prove worthy. And find ways to improve those ideas. Ideas will not sneak up on you and have scandals. They will not be greedy and betray you. Defending ideas means that you can fight for justice even when the recipient is an a**hole. Defending people means that sooner or later, you will be forced to defend idiocy and untruth.” – Elnathan John

Clouded and mental darkness,

Stabbing and sharpening insanity

Family inconvenience,

Clouded and mental darkness,

Stabbing and sharpening insanity

Family inconvenience,

Rumors and interest severely compounding,

Kunta Kinte,

Judge him now,

A lost kindred Zimbabwean,

Reward for his capture,

The judgement may never be thwarted.

Civilian bandit,

Miles from mothers carriage,

Society’s alarming judgment,

Broke his promises?

God forsaken!

Sorry for the inconvenience.

We’ll keep you in prayer,

Accusations captained a mental violence.

Kunta Kinte!

Reward for his capture,

Pharasaical concerns should forever be thwarted!

Pilgrim in a barren land,

Guilty conscience paused a potent rise,

Rising from ashes, burning coals,

Rampant Sigma sands,

Illicit duplicity,

May God forgive timeless and consuming inequities,

And bring all to the promised land.

Army Drums banging!

Reverberations and echoes made him a prodigal,

He never refused to return,

He assumed he was a Son of the Soil,

Battling concerns and accusations,

Kunta Kinte!

Agonizing cries for help!

Reward for his capture!

May cruel judgement  be swiftly thwarted.

Sorrow, grief, anger and disbelief,

All used to drink from the same God-given creek,

You’ll Never Walk Alone they mumbled,

Embers of his memory unveiled the disguise,

They allowed him to reach offspring of the tribe,

Reprimanded and forced into deathly denial.

Guide him O thou great redeemer,

May his path be free of guilt.

And peaceful sanity gracefully reinstated!

Kunta Kinte,

We are not gods,

Anikulabo,

May all be forgiven and judgment forever thwarted.

©  2018 SonofGuruve

 

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#Conscience of a Hermit


It was #WorldPoetryDay yesterday so we decided to repost @DanManyika’s poem:

Conscience of a Hermit.

We lived yesterday for tomorrow’s blight,

We live today for yesterday’s plight,

We live now for tomorrow’s lie.
We die today for tomorrow’s life,

But tomorrow’s life will die before it is born.

We ask for no reprisal.

We ask not for last year’s mercy,

But plead for an emotional rescue.

We ask not for forgiveness.

We bear no grudges,

Even though grudges reside in our conscience.
Our conscience knows no guilt,

Because guilt is a foreign imposition,

That knows no friend or foe.

We brook no pleasure In the imposition of emotions

On our mental common room,

Already over-crowded by the mercies of yesteryear’s guilt.

We will live tomorrow,

On the benevolent promise Of a bumper harvest of ashes,

From the badly burnt treasures,

From down memory lane.

We will outlive tomorrow,

As we have done in centuries past.

We will outshine the sun, Because we no longer fear,

The shadows that hang on our everyday existence.

We will.

We will.

We will.

We will.

Because we are Zimbabweans.

#FatherofGuruve

© 2018 SonofGuruvé

#Yellow1000


Initially, Arani thought his favorite columnist Kenny Mufuka was exposing him when he read this a couple of years ago:Four years later, with the clouds and smoke scattered like the sacred Mosi-oa-Tunya, Arani revisited the paragraph while listening to Mura Masa’s Lovesick ft. A$AP Rocky:https://open.spotify.com/track/3sTN90bIP2cJ1783ctHykO?si=QGzKg1cVTk-6P-Yvq9kw4AHe thought to himself,

When you are no longer appreciated, move on.

When you are no longer invited, find a new gathering.

When you are hurt, learn from it, heal, keep moving forward and don’t look back.

It’s plausible to reminisce, but why focus on an rear view mirror when one has a magnificent windshield displaying an ocean of optimism on the horizon that lies ahead?

When your circle no longer celebrates you, find a new circle.

Ironically, Arani found another quote when he was meandering the social media streets and boulevards just the other day.

His fellow tribeslady, student, BigIngduna Editor and low-key inspiration called Zoelle shared this on her Facebook page so he had to pause and reflect again:

It may be difficult to relate, but when you need to drink from a different fountain you should.Don’t hesitate.Don’t make assumptions, but when you dig deep and realize the root cause of any disequilibrium, follow the language of your spirit. The spirit never lies. If you listen, it will smack you loudly in the face – unexpectedly.Arani followed suit, stumbled around after a three-hour flight from New York to Atlanta and bumped into Geena aka #Yellow1000.It really doesn’t matter what the point of this post is, but he promised her he would do this.It also doesn’t matter what tribe you are from, but if you are in the #MhofuClan of the Shona Tribe you need to keep your promises.Sadly not all of us do.Geena poured into Arani when his fountain was rather dry and he’s grateful she was just honest with him.So Geena, what’s your favorite color?

YELLOW! 🌝

What is your favorite song?

Firefly by Mura Masa or Clarity by Zedd

What are your Hobbies?

Puzzles, as boring as that sounds, Lol. Taking pictures, editing them.

Please share some “Fun Facts” about you.

I used to dream of becoming a singer when I was younger. I had promised my grandma until she passed that I would make her proud on stage one day. But then I changed my major to psychology.

What’s your Ethnicity?

Korean 🇰🇷

What’s something you want the world to know?

Everyone is different. Everyone deserves love. Everyone deserves happiness.

What causes you are interested in?

Anything animal related & children related (helping & adopting & healing)

What are your aspirations?

To live a happy life. I want to help others become happy, healthy & loved.

Lastly, what advice would you want to give young girls like you and others?

You are strong & powerful. You are beautiful & loved. You are pure greatness & worthy of everything in this world. The world may be an ugly place, but you bring beauty to your surroundings, & in turn, into this world. Continue to shine bright like the diamond you are.

Thank you @simplygeena.We wish you well in all of your endeavors.Be like Geena and bring some goodness into this bad world where some are marginalized, disenfranchised, broken and need mending.Have a #Yellow1000 day.©️ 2018 SonofGuruvé

WAKANDA by SonofGuruvé – 3/9/2018


It was a dream, but was it?

—–

He finally watched Black Panther.

His writing partner bought him a ticket and even though he was late, he made it just in time for some African Magic.

He’d been anticipating this moment for his whole life.

Considering, how far he’d come as an African Bootyscratcher in the United States of America.

He distinctly remembered being laughed at because he was an African student on campus.

Walking from the library, the ignorant cheerleader said, “Speak English Shaka!”.

He distinctly remembered the threat to attack him when he was in Baltimore, MD while walking around with Doctor Pari.

When a brother says, “I’ll put 5 on it”, be very careful.

Fortunately, nothing happened.

He was just a lost immigrant child unaware of black-on-black crime.  In Africa this term didn’t exist so he was just puzzled.

He distinctly remembers being barred from his girlfriend’s family home because of the pigment of his skin.

He remembers not being allowed to complete a credit application because his passport was from a foreign country.  It still is.

He remembers phone calls that were made to stop him from starting a scholarship at his almer mata.

He also remembers his Sigma brother who took him under his wings and introduced him to #BlueJuice.

He remembers his big brother who inspired him to graduate with honors by applying the true virtues of a Sigma man.

He’d been too busy party-hopping, but his big brother’s words got him back on track.

He remembers when his big brother had cancer, but didn’t know how to handle the situation so he guiltily sent “thoughts and prayers”.

Suddenly Afro-Futurism entered the fray and Black Panther is like his life story.

Dark skin and Africa are suddenly “cool” and so are dashikis and natural hair.

His tattoos now hold so much more value because when he got them, they were for his ancestors and now they’re on the global Motion Picture.

So he wrote a song/poem two weeks before the movie came out and let it be known that Danai Gurira is his crush because she is from Zimbabwe and went to his sister school.

He hopes that as she reads this, she blushes.

He is proud that his eight years in South Carolina were not in vain because he recently learned Chadwick Boseman is from Anderson.

Dang. Black Panther just walked past me.

No need to delay.

Here it is.

He is not a victim.

He’s just a legal African immigrant trying to help others one line after line.

WAKANDA  by SonofGuruvé Published 3/9/2018

Check the Fahrenheit you aren’t hot enough!

Check your mind’s mileage you ain’t GROWN enough!

Tremblin because of  dat potent African hype?

Short man scribin all of dat!

Destructing African stereotypes,

Like!

Scheming in my lab, bad man never behind,

Eagle eye sparrow, why you scared of foreign heights?

The tribe building bitcoin mayonnaise-colored hype,

Black Wall Street n dat,

Wakanda Africans beaming dat light,

Right type,

Black Panther masquerading at night

You didn’t know he’s from Zimbabwe,

The Kingdom of Mutapa,

And that’s That!

And that’s That!

Facts!

 Chorus

Naijah gal baking me alotta Yam,

Inidian girl servin me spicy naam,

Techie gal sending me bare spam,

Christian gal – sending plenty Bible braps,

Freaky girl sending me freaky snaps,

Coco Butter but Momma say I don’t like that,

Moral compass, keep that Natwest balance,

Black Panther, Black man pull up!

HE  got the London African mandem saying BRAAAP!

Don’t say whatever coz I bring you every weather.

Now give me my sweater, it’s never cold in keDecember!

Verse Two

Check the Fahrenheit – you ain’t cold enough!

Check your mind’s mileage – you ain’t rolled enough!

They want to roll but only two seats,

They got knowledge they can’t reach,

Snapping me grinning my teeth,

They say they tall trees, but no fruit,

They say they old, but yo they a yout,

Afro Wave got her snapping me her glutes.

Short man, heavy pinstriped and beige suit,

Diamonds, Spades, Clubs, Hearts?

No I’m an ACE,

I got four Black suits.

Crazy 8, No lucky card – No Pick n Play.

Gushungo’s Speech:

Now you gotta pick two!

Bad Man Forward,

Bad man Pull up!

Class is in session, growing from the roots!

So let me teach.

London Immigration had me waiting for a week,

Geez,

Ps,

Man I had Beef!

Give me a minute!

I’m not stuttering,

This not di Last King’s speech!

Chorus

Naijah gal baking me alotta Yam,

Inidian girl baking me lotta nam,

IT gal got sending me bare spam,

Christian gal sending me plenty Bible braps,

Freak girl sending me plenty, freaky snaps,

Coco Butter Momma say I don’t like that,

Moral compass, keep that moral balance,

Black Panther, Black man pull up!

I got the London African mandem saying BRAAAP!

Don’t say whatever coz I bring you every weather.

Now give me my sweater, it’s never cold in keDecember!

 [Outro]

Zoom Zoom Zoom Zoom,

Poom Poom Poom Poom,

Don’t test me,

Lyrically,

We Distressing.

Interesting!

Collectively,

Tribe from Mvurwi,

Left my gal from Barking,

Her name’s Landddaaaaani

Other one Tapi, Mandi and Shingi,

Black Boots!

Dem Boy smokin’ inna African fountain of truth.

We know our roots,

Our roots,

Our roots,

Wakanda Black Panther!

My ting, My G!

My rings,

Black Rims,

No Tims,

Never lean,

I’m out – Like Fela said – I’ve got death in my mutha*** pouch!

 ∞ (Adapted from Not3s’ “99 +1” song)

 © 2018 SonofGuruve