January 13, 2009

Talib Kweli's Words of Wisdom


It was the night of November 11, 2006 at the ASFC of Franklin & Marshall College. There was not a cloud in the sky and the stars were in full effect as JusListen Entertainment prepared to take the stage and open up the concert for Talib Kweli…”

After a one hour set, leaving many people in the crowd stunned at the fact that two of their classmates & peers had just set the stage on fire, we congratulated each other and proceeded backstage to wind down. For the show, JusListen Ent. consisted of myself, T.R.E. (Dave Dennis), Ashton Williams, Dubb (Paul Fields), and P-Gunna (Patrick Delisser). We sat in amazement and watched Talib mount the stage with DJ Chaps of the 12” Assassins to a roar from the crowd.

Now that’s how to rock the house.

Seeing a sea of people who were of all races, genders, and generations spit his lyrics as though they had written them was priceless. Those were the same faces that we saw from the stage, and it took us almost the first half of the show until we won them over. So it was at that moment we knew that there was still a long way to go in this Hip-Hop game.
After his set, we met up with him and his peoples in the press area upstairs and he gave JusListen Ent. some words of advice that will remain with me forever. He said:

When we got the set list, it didn’t have your names on it as performers. It only referred to you guys as ‘Local Support’. Now that’s OK though, because I started out as ‘local support’ and without any you’ll never be successful. Look at where you are now and what you have done to get here. You know you’re on the right path, all you have to do is keep walking.”

And that’s exactly what I’ve done since. I’ve kept walking. I walked right across that Graduation stage, walked the streets of NYC petitioning for Barack Obama & Save The Children, walked from music label to music label looking for a job, until I walked right into the front doors of globalGrind, and will continue to walk my path until I’m carried away.

If you’re reading this, thank you Talib Kweli for the words of wisdom, and know that they did not fall upon deaf ears.


- Steve Tyson Jr.

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