Friday, February 8, 2013

Party and Bullshit (Notorious B.I.G)

When I was in middle school Biggie Smalls was big. I mean, he was already a big guy but he was a big star. When he got killed his murder was big news. Puffy made a billion dedications and when we were watching the VMA's my mother made a crack about it being the throngs of his kiddies out of wedlock. Whateves.

We didn't have cable in our house so we were a little in the dark. As a matter of fact I called him The Notorious Big and everyone laughed at me. Then he got shot. I never met the guy which made me sad. He could spit out mad rhymes and had an idea of what it was to be an outcast like I was. Biggie or Christopher Wallace like he was known to his mother was overweight and dropped out of school to sell drugs. I was overweight at the time and loved to write poetry. I didnt dare spit mad rhymes. But still, he seemed to live a cool life, making money even from the grave. Hey, he supported his family.

In high school I had a friend who could take me home from school every day. I will admit I crushed on him a little, him being the bad boy I dreamed of. At the time I was someone who's parents still wouldnt let her date at eighteen. He smoked, drank, and did all the things I thought I would never do but eventually did and more. When we used to ride home from school he played B.I.G. I still think, "Biggie Smalls is the illest."

The following year I moved to NYC and had one of the worst years of my life to date. Chilling near school, I ended up in what was once Empire Records and purchased Ready to Die by Biggie. Yes, the lyrics were a little sexist and degrading to women at times but the rhymes were ill. Plus it gave me a connection to the streets of New York. Despite what people thought of me I knew I had a heart and soul in me, a street vibe. It was a side of me I had always known was there but hadnt tapped. It was April the Bad Ass.

Okay not really, but it helped me shed a layer of skin on me and off I went. Being April Brucker.

The Bad Ass got me in trouble I never dreamed of at certain points. I laugh about it now because Bad Ass was actually Bad Actor as in stupid or Dumb Ass as in dumb. Still it gave me some good stories. But Biggie had lots of good stories probly.

About eight years later, and some TV credits later, I got the chance to guest judge a hip hop show Uptown. The rap stars all went in and were stripped search, a bi-product of Biggie's era, an era where rappers feuded from different sides of the country and killed each other over music. One guest judge worked for a record label, another was the original DJ Spinderella from Salt 'n'Pepa

Spin had come from a musical family, and her father had been a sax player for James Brown. We spoke about the people she knew and Spin told me she knew Biggie and was close to him. I asked her how he was as a person. Spin said he was "the sweetest, biggest Teddy Bear." I laughed remembering his rapping about Gats, robbing trains, and slapping hos being a pimp daddy. Spin agreed.

Spin then told an endearing story about how she used to watch some kids and how they didn't want to go to school, because they were kids of course. At the time, Spin was running out of options. Spin mentioned she knew Biggie but they didn't believe her. Well Spin then called Biggie and informed him of her ordeal. Biggie then stepped in with the perfect plan. He called the house and Spin put him on the phone with the kids. Biggie proceeded to introduce himself as Biggie Smalls, rap a little, and then told them they had to listen to Spin and go to school. The story was sweet and while I had been a fan to begin with, this made me happy I had spent money on his albums and listened to him during those rides home senior year. This also made me angry someone killed him, someone probably close to him. Then I realized this story, this anecdote made the fat man who liked big booty bitches a son, brother, and father; it made him real.

A few months later as a part of a web network I used to spit freestyle rhymes. While I had my dissers there were many who said I went hard for a white girl. In my heart I know it was because once upon a time I was an overweight outcast. I hated school and struggled to find my place. My dreams were big and I knew the sky was the limit. I dreamed of getting out and getting the rainbow. Then I realized I dreamed big, just like B.I.G. That is why I wasn't afraid to hit it as hard as I did on the mic.

And he is probably rolling his eyes and laughing from the after life talking trash about my abilities or lackthereof.

Party and bullshit.

I Came, I Saw, I Sang: Memoirs of a Singing Telegram Delivery Girl
877-Buy-Book, for paperback
Ebook on Nook and Kindle
Watch out for audiobook
Portion of proceeds go to RAINN

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