Rewinding back to 2011 with this week’s #ThrowbackThursday where Dub FX, armed with his loop station provides the mellow yet dirty beats for Stamina MC’s inspirational and heartfelt lyrics.
Dub FX is a Street Performer from Melbourne, Australia and Stamina MC is an English vocalist best known for tracks ‘LK‘ (by DJ Marky & XRS Land) and ‘Barcelona‘ (by D Kay & Epsilon) – the video for this track is filmed in Vienna, Austria.
I remember hearing this all those years ago and it hitting me in a way which left a mark. Each time I revisit this track the message contained becomes even clearer than in the last listen. Stamina manages to convey a message in his verses which, although initially it makes you feel as though you’re on the outside looking in at this artist’s lifestyle, that disconnected POV quickly melts away and leaves with you the realisation that the words are relevant to each one of us in their own way. We’re all human, right?
I’m just a normal guy, with things to do before I die
Don’t always know the how or the why
Saw that I seemed to have a mind in doubt
So now I do what I can before my time is out
I’ve gotta do whatever helps my name
If I sleep on opportunities I’ve only got myself to blame
I felt for healthy change, left everybody else the same
All hellbent on the wealth and fame
I’ve always- seen things through different eyes
This kid got wise, refused to be stigmatised
If you only knew, you might get a big surprise
By the amount of people still getting gigs from lies
Of various kinds, these are precarious times
So I gather my thoughts, starting to prepare them as rhymes
So I can stay aware of the signs that confront me
‘Cos if it ain’t real I neither care or have time, to put it bluntly.
I’m just getting across my POV
Speaking from the heart and representing me only
That’s the main thing I try to get through with speech
Get everything out in the open like a nudist beach
More than just what I might do this week; whatever’s true
Clever, new, unique — and setting fools on a losing streak
I’m hoping you notice, I need you to study this
That’s my main AIM, not a screen name on buddy lists
But every now and then I get it wrong — though my head is strong
I’d rather we get along than to get it on
There’s so many MCs people love to hate
So I try my hardest not to punch above my weight
My only intent is to sublimate — not to be the topic of forum drama
Or a pub debate
But if I have been let me scrub the slate
These Rooftop Sessions – Dub FX, it’s time to put that dub to plate.
So step it up
So what it comes down to, is I’m just another junglist kid
That basically had a dream
And over time what I’ve found true is I’d rather have my voice in your ear
Than my face in a magazine — publicity ain’t really me
Though I can flow superb if the time’s right
I really reckon I’m allergic to limelight
See some believe it’s wrong — but I only feel the heat is on
When the beat is gone
And the music stops — Boss, please don’t compare me to other MCs
‘Cos most of them dudes is lost
I’m well aware what involvement in this music costs
And how a little underground heat can soon be frost – gosh!
Some people think it’s all showbiz
I tell ‘em I’m 32 and still I’ve got no mortgage and no kids
And some weekends I’ll do no gigs
I wish you’d seen the looks that I’ve gotten, ‘cos they really think that I’m so BIG
Read my rider and you’ll soon think “What is this raas?!
“Where’s all the champagne, the five stars, the business class?!”
All of that would just get dismissed fast; if you don’t believe me
My request is to kiss this arse
I spit this harsh ‘cos you don’t know the depth of the scheme
How I repped for my team when I stepped on the scene
See, my life’s nothing like what you expect
So get your specs checked if you think this lifestyle is ‘jet set’
And yet, all I do is fret – what’s my next step?
I’m stressed, working up a sweat, looking desperate
Okay, that’s not true but I’m still concerned
I’ve made progress but I’ve got a lot of skills to learn
Like how to sing a subtle melody about my inner struggle
Internal conflicts that still get me in a muddle
Limited only by the force of my will
I’m slowly learning how to tap into the source of my skill.
I’m only human, slowly finding my way
Reminded each day of reasons for the lines that I say
I’m only human, someone who makes mistakes
I’ve had my fair share of mishaps and great escapes
I’m only human, tryna provide the stuff that you need
I’m not a machine, I promise if you cut me I’ll bleed
So stop assuming that you get less than high quality
That’s got me fuming, and not someone that I wanna be.
Nikki has worked in various positions in the Music industry for over ten years including Artist Management, Booking Agency and Record Label Management. She runs Synchronicity, Spentshell, UKBM and Manages Flowdan.
“Bass does something to me. I absolutely immersed myself in Drum & Bass during my teens and early twenties, and when Dubstep came along I was thrown into that love once again, not just the music, but the whole community surrounding it.
Working in the industry has been a dream for me, and being involved in such a vibrant scene means that I constantly come across incredibly talented individuals who I just want to shout about and that’s what I use the UKBM platform for, to promote talent whether known or new.”