Childish Gambino “Sweatpants”

Childish Gambino “Sweatpants”

 

The other day at work I was having a conversation with my coworkers about 90’s hip-hop. Names like Mobb Deep, M.O.P, Wu-Tang Clan, Nas, Biggie, Fugees, Big L, Outkast, Busta Rhymes, A Tribe Called Quest, the Pharcyde, and a dozen more got dropped. We reminisced how we couldn’t go about our business without having our disk-man and a small cd carrying case with our carefully selected assortment of mix-tapes and albums. In those days we lived for music. We laughed about how we could be in the best mood in the world, but if the right track came on, like Pete Roc and Clay Smooth “T.R.O.Y” or Mobb Deep “Shook Ones Pt. 2”, it could have a transformative effect on your mood. Your walk would become a little harder, your face slightly more stoic, and you quietly thought to yourself that you were the baddest man on planet earth and you wish someone would try to bring the ruckus!

Off course music no longer has the same effect on me as it did back then, because naturally I’m older, and have much better understanding of consequences then I did when I was a snot-nosed teen. But every once in a blue moon, I will come across a track, like Childish Gambino’s “Sweatpants” that will cause my shoulder to sway with a little more determination. That will make me put on that “you better not fuck with me” face.” And for like a minute or two I will allow myself to flirt with the idea that I am as indestructible as I was when I was 18 years old and ready to take on the world. That is until my hardcore walk causes my left knee to hurt, and my back stiffens, and my shoulder swaying is reaggravating an old rotator cup injury, and then I remember that I’m too old for all that tough guy shit. But it’s ok, because near the end of “Sweatpants”, the hard edge transitions over into some smooth, sexy funk, and I realize that there is nothing wrong with just grooving to the track like any normal ex-youngster that just wants to find a graceful way to enter middle age.

Music to Get Lost in: Macklemore – Can’t Hold Us (Mashup)

Music to Get Lost in: Macklemore – Can’t Hold Us (Mashup)

The sun’s heart lifting rays were coming through the blinds, alerting me that it was another beautiful, sunny, summer day in Chicagoland. I thought to myself “This is awesome. It looks gorgeous out there and I don’t have to go to work. I love me a good Saturday!” I turn over to wrap my arms around my sleeping wife, only to find nothing but empty space next to me. I figured nature called and she’s was in the bathroom. I grab my phone and I see I have 1 unread text message. It’s from the wifey. It read “Made it. Love you! Kissy face”. She was at work. But why? She doesn’t work on the weekends. That’s when the nurons in the ol’ dome piece started firing up, and the true horror of what just happened hit me. It wasn’t Saturday. It was Friday. I still had 9 more hours of confinement to deal with at work before I earned my freedom for the weekend. Dammit!

Usually, starting my day on such a disappointing note would be enough for me to just notch the entire day up as a loss. But not this morning. I picked up my earphones and popped them in the ear holes, started up the 8track app, and went hunting for a playlist that might salvage my day. I came across a playlist apply named Summer Vibin’. The first song that come on was Maklemore & Ryan Lewis – Can’t Hold Us. It was just what the doctor ordered. The song got me motivated to face the rest of the day. But motivated just seems to tame of a word to describe what I was actually feeling. I think 19 year old me can better describe what I felt. “That jam got me hype!”

Well said buddy, well said.

As Much as I love the original version of Maklemore’s “Cant Hold Us”, I came across another version on Youtube featuring Ryan Lewis, Kendrick Lamar & Childish Gambino, that I thought was even better. Who needs 5 hour Energy when there are tracks like this to get you going? Now if you’ll excuse me I suddenly got the urge to go running  through a few brick walls.