Let’s start with the dark-side; Anti-political, spiritual-revolutionary artists are among a class of financial midgets. As one of my ol’ friends used to say, “fuck it, I’m on a shoe-string budget”.
What is the bright-side you ask? Well, a Chinese businessman I once met told me, after asking me what I do, “Ah, so you are an artist. You will be rich and famous when you are dead.”
I think that might be the “otherside”, but I’m not crossing that bridge yet.
I joke, I joke…
Really though, the dark-side of being an independent, conscious emcee, one who steadfastly drops on topics Joe Schmoe and Jane Doe don’t wanna hear in their ear, is that there is a very small audience willing to listen and to connect with. I know from experience because I’ve been writing politically-charged, conspiracy-implicating, and probing rhymes since 1999. This failed to make me a lot of friends; on the contrary, I made a few, great friends.
In the early 2000’s, I was a crazy man, a nut-job–a paranoid schizophrenic and such a negative person to be around. By 2006, people thought some of what I was talking about in years prior, was more accurate than they previously thought. By 2008, a lot of people said, “you were right about the Republicans, but at least we can vote some Democrats back in. It can’t be all bad. The economy was booming under Clinton, and we all made money”. In 2009, not only was I crazy again, now I was racist too. Now it’s 2014, and not much is changing–at least not on the surface.
The hidden dark-side to being an independent, conscious and outspoken artist, is you are perceived as, somehow, evil or messed up in the head, crazy, or a negative and dark person to be avoided–at all costs (I was gonna say weird, but that one is definitely true). You are called names, gang-bullied and laughed at in the face like you are a side-show circus. You are ridiculed, cursed out, and threatened with physical violence for your perceptions and particularly, for taking a stand against predatory politics and spiritualism, as well as global, human slavery. I keep forgetting how free the human race is on this planet…silly me.
The dark-side consists of: catching flak from people for uncompromisingly being true-to-self, my audience seems to be about non-existent, and my pockets are thin.
The dark-side was and is like a hot-fire. When you walk through it, it refines your character like a blacksmith smelts iron into a steel sword. To say the least…it keeps your sharp.
What is the bright-side to all this? The bright-side is I’m thankful for all I have, including the basics– food, clothing, and shelter–but also, for all those individuals who play a role in my life, the love they share, and for the mind, body, spirit, and emotion I was endowed with. The bright-side is that absent monetary/financial abundance, I enjoy the rewards of wealth through my creativity and spirituality.
The bright-side is seeing the beauty of individuality, of music, and of being involved for a bigger-cause; the cause of acting with the highest and best for all involved as your focus-point and core-principle of being. If you base your life on a greater cause, then your greatest realization-of-self will follow. In other words, the bright-side is to put forth your best, for the best, in a self-less manner. The bright-side is to be of service-to-others, and you will always have everything you need.
The current “system” in place now globally, is a closed-system of service-to-self, and rewards cut-throat behavior that is purely selfish, greedy, and destructive. Individuals, whether artists or otherwise, who act selflessly to the benefit of the many, for the highest good of all involved, fail to prosper financially because they refuse to engage in conflict–conflict is the basis for the global economy.
When you realize conflict is an illusion propagated to generate financial wealth, you refuse to fight against the shadows and to waste any more of your time and energy feeding a lethal beast. There are no opposing sides to a conflict that only exists in the minds of those willing to fight against each other in it. Those seemingly opposing sides ultimately destroy each other and/or self-destruct, and thus, clashing sides of an illusive conflict are in actuality, the same side–the side of death and destruction. I now appreciate the dark-side of things, because absent that dark-side, my learning and experience will have been void of multi-dimensionality and character-building.
Understanding and experiencing both the dark-side and the bright-side of being an anti-political, spiritual-revolutionary artist, established and maintains a vast spiritual wealth that is beyond the measure of men in their money-making-machinations. Adversity has sharpened my resolve, refined my character, and shaped my perceptions and perspectives to a level of transcending the diabolical game of illusory conflict, for the highest and best of all involved.