Hip Hop media, like most other forms of critical media, is often inundated with various forms of social baggage. Whether it is the latest news on Wiz & Amber’s messy divorce situation, or even as pointless as THIS, there are many distractions to what is really important in any art form – quality of expression. Today, we’ve had a (probably much needed) reminder of the power of lyricism and rhyme in human expression, thanks to a chance discovery by Chigago rapper Co-Still on the Chicago Subway.
Meet Joseph Lane, AKA ‘SoLow RedLine’ (who has named himself after the subway line he spits on).
Joseph is homeless, sleeps rough, and lives off $40 a week, which also goes towards supporting his son. Co-Still caught SoLow rapping with a small amplifier system at Jackson Station, and uploaded it to Youtube where it has blown up, even catching the attention of bait idiots Fox News (who have now offered him an interview live on air). I’ve watched the guy spitting (over Eminem’s ‘Mockingbird’ instrumental) and while his flow leaves a lot to be desired, the lyrics are the story of a real man’s struggle. I’m sure we’re all exhausted with rappers fake-talking about murder, cocaine, cars and swimming pools, and there is something admittedly real about Joseph Lane’s underground bars. It’s refreshing to see some apt social commentary from him aswell, especially regarding his local Chicago scene. He talks about his local Chiraq artists, claiming people who follow image & money obsessed artists such as Chief Keef ‘just sold they soul for 2 dollars’ and tells the crowd ‘man I’m real father, so please don’t judge, especially if you go home and bump some Young Thug’. As I said, it’s not groundbreaking, but it’s worth a watch to remind you the possibilities of this genre, and is an honest story from a man in struggle.