Touch the Sky - A Midwest Mindset by Omega McBride

photo by theuctheatre

Or touché, Lupe cool as the unthawed

But I still feel possessed as a gun charge

Come as correct as a porn star

In a fresh pair steps in my best foreign car 

-Lupe Fiasco 

If “Life ain’t meant to come around twice” [Lupe’s Food & Liquor], then that must mean there’s always something worth looking forward to, somewhere up ahead. We tend to replay certain lines over again, in our heads or aloud on our too many media devices that captures our attention and often strikes an emotional chord within us. This is usually best delivered through short story formed rhymes and surprising vocal risks taken through different forms of communicating the message of the song by the artist behind the music and, in turn, creates an amazing experience for the listener called “Replay Value”.

After dropping his Debut 3x GRAMMY nominated Album Food & Liquor, along with releasing the Hit “Kick Push” as the2006 Album’s lead single, Lupe Fiasco and producer Soundtrakk had begun to lay the foundation for what would become an impressive statement made and new standard set in Hip Hop Culture for not only the conscious community but communities abroad. Between the ear snatching soulful instrumentals, over your head rhyme patterns peeling the brain back, a Jay – Z co-sign and an eccentric sense of global appeal gaining steam around the Lupe Camp, it was clear to the world that we were witnessing a phenom whom had been awaiting his time to tell the world not only his own personal story but also the stories of those experiencing hardships not far off from each other. From very early on in his musical career and having commercial success, Lupe offered supporters life solutions; Alternative ways of thinking or living lives with positively empowering purpose, while yet still in with The Cool.

Looking back, it seemed to first be Lupe’s guest appearance on Kanye West’s Touch The Sky in the early part of 2006 that set the Hip Hop world ablaze and opened our eyes to a 20-something Emcee who was very unapologetically confident about his purpose for arriving, courageously displaying an eye-popping perspective on penning his commercial rhymes with what some consider complicated patterns or lyrics. Here to “Come as correct as a Porn Star”, Lupe’s ability to ride the beat with an effortlessly engaging, conversational flow left us with something to both enjoy & think about it. His approach, using spoken word poetry for interludes on his albums to bring the central theme of what’s going on around us and the responsibility we have to create change is what made Lupe’s initial buzz or subsequent breakout success as an artist from the Westside of Chicago a force to appreciate.

Fast forward, in a day where many artists are said to seemingly be sounding either the same or extremely similar, Lupe Fiasco is an artist who in the past has found a way to establish and maintain his own voice amongst proven greats. With such an original delivery and outlook on the World’s woes; Classic Album covers, swagger trendsetting, incomparable Top Tier Lyricism and extensive Kung Fu Guru knowledge, it’s a wonder we haven’t heard more current events themed based music from the veteran Midwest storyteller. There being 6 years between Lupe’s 3rd LP 2011’s Lasers (#1 on Billboard 200) and 2017’s LP Drogus Light which is approaching its 1 year Anniversary, let’s have faith that one of Hip Hop’s most experienced emcees will find his way back onto the scene of New Music alerts in 2018 with leaks from the rumored upcoming album Trilogy, DROGUS. Lupe can sing, write, produce, arrange and get a message across in some of the most creative ways we’ve ever seen. The possibilities remain endless for him, objectively speaking.

Chicago is a City of many reasons to be operating as the highest version of yourself, especially if you are a native like Lupe is, overcoming Battle Scars and treating one another as if a Superstar. Lupe Fiasco is one of the best at being able to get a listener’s attention through anthem music and witty word play. As an avid supporter of his music and all around efforts to be of positive impact since he arrived on the scene 12 years ago, it would be dope to see the Chicago legend use 2018 as platform or blank slate to drop a Trilogy of music with hella “Replay Value”! In this current state of Hip Hop, a smack in the face or wakeup call for the Culture from one of the best to ever step inside of a booth or pick up a microphone could prove to be a good move.

One single at a time, this time, perhaps. Nonetheless, Lupe that time is now and now is always the best time to be great. I guess, we’ll see what happens. Continue courageously!

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