Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Yet Another Incentive to a Life of Crime -or- Another Alternative to Lifting Weights

Pimp C, since I saw him on BET last week, is now out of prison. This portends any number of things. First off, Pimp C will probably be showing up on TV more often now that he's out of prison. Awesome. Of all the people I'd like to see more of on TV, Pimp C is definitely, for sure, one of them. He has a very peculiar (to me), I mean, at very least, distinctive, way of speaking that strikes me as even cooler than any of his other Houston compatriots. So that's good.

Second-of-ly, anthems along the line of, "Please Free Pimp C" have now become a recollection of the past: what, sadly perhaps, may end up to be the glory days of Houston hip hop. Last summer, I was convinced the Houston thing wouldn't take off like people were preparing for it to. I dunno why, but I mean c'mon. Would you have thought somebody named Chamillionaire, who looks like fucking Chamillionaire does would ever be super-famous? Would you have thought a style of music that raises brightly colored paint, parking lots, and shiny mouths to the status of primary importance would really catch on in a country as diversified, as into driving fast, generally, and with as many fucking silver cars, as this one?

Obviously I was wrong. And I hope that Houston rap doesn't collapse in on itself. I'd like nothing more to be allowed to watch Paul Wall grow old and grey. It'd be charming. And, especially for Pimp C's sake, I hope people continue to care about Houston. The guy has been made nearly as much of a martyr for the scene, and nearly as famous, as DJ Screw, and now, unlike Screw, he'll have the chance to enjoy it as long as the hip hop listening masses don't turn their back on Texas and start pumping Baltimore or NorCal or something.

But, really, what intrigues me most whenever a story lik Pimp C's comes along is the fact that hip hop musicians, even while incarcerated, are able to produce new original material. This phenomenon should not by any means be confused with that of dead people producing new material. That's the work of overzealous and greedy business partners recycling through out-takes. A different process entirely. What I'm interested in is, what does a prison's recording studio look like?

Maybe Pimp C didn't do a lot of recording while during his time in the clink, but, unless I'm mistaken, some of his solo album was committed to tape in the joint. Charles Manson has released songs he recorded in prison, though any money made from these goes to the relatives of his victims. But can a normal guy in jail on some trumped up drug charges, or maybe concealed weapon shit or manslaughter or something, be all like, "hey, instead of playing basketball today, you think I could get into the studio and lay down a few verses I've been working on?"

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