This may seem a little out of left field, but music has always been a big part of my life. I’ve enjoyed playing piano since age eleven, singing in various a cappella groups in high school and college, producing everything from hip-hop to blues, and beyond.
Now, it’s become more of a fun hobby where I record some goofy music just to kick back and get the creative juices flowing.
I wrote these lyrics for a rap in January of this year, shortly after making my travel pledge:I committed to stop buying physical things and instead use the money to travel every month in 2015. Doing so made it possible for me to volunteer my time taking pictures and videos in Siguatepeque, Honduras back in May. That experience completely changed my perspective about what our resources can accomplish when they’re not wasted on unnecessary material possessions.
While I don’t plan to keep up the travel schedule in 2016 (there’s something bigger coming up) it has been an affirming and wonderful experience. It’s proven to me that sharing experiences with the people that I care about brings me so much more joy than anything from Amazon ever did. Having the ability to see, with my own eyes, a cause that I care so deeply about was a direct result of this change as well.
With all that in mind, here are the lyrics that I wrote in January complete with supertext references:
2015 became the year of adventure
straight flying to chicago on a midnight bender1
your professors c-check2 and antronomics3 got tenure
so grab your notepad ’cause you better remember
the lyrics on lock, cop some stocks and investments4
you’re ’bout to learn something ’bout life and its essence
all we got is time can’t rewind it one take
so don’t you spend your life chasing that which is fake5
I’m 296 time is flyin’, but I’m selling not buying
feeling lighter7 like a zippo ’cause I’m spittin’ hot fire8
been in from the beginning since I started out singin’
now we’re rippin’ on this mic9 ’cause you know we’re still kickin’
on a mission10 livin’ large, figuratively speaking
life on fleek and don’t be sleepin’11 on this incredible weekend
come on in the water’s warm, you can find me in the deep end12
better learn up how to swim, now’s the time to up and begin13
1 Referring to my red-eye late night flight to get to Chicago. Not booze related.
2 C-Check is my co-producer’s rap/stage name.
3 Antronomics is my producer/stage name.
4 There has never been a better time than now to invest in your financial future.
5 We can never get our time back. Don’t waste it by chasing the image of success through material possessions.
6 I am now 30.
7 For several months, my wife and I sold, donated, and purged a huge chunk of our possessions. We felt lighter as a result.
9 No microphones were harmed during the recording of this track.
10 In January, I found out that I’d have a chance to help out with The Hope Effect.
11 Standard terminology, really.
12 I jumped into minimalism pretty fast, but hey – come on in, the water is warm.
13 The best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago. The second best time? Now.
While it may seem silly to do so through rap lyrics, here are some takeaways. Let’s align our short-term actions to make sure they reflect our long-term values. While this won’t be likely be hitting the radio airwaves, let’s all use our unique perspective and vision to share what it means to live a life full of meaning. Let’s imagine, plan, and build the world that we want to live in while being examples of what is possible.