The word ‘rapper’ conjures to mind many images. You, dear reader, probably have your own. Today, Sensa Nostra speaks with Grandmilly, a rapper from Hempstead, NY.
How Tough Is Your Town? – The Devil Lacks Horns: Philosophy W/ Grandmilly Rvidxrklvn
Hempstead is like a sour patch kid. You know. Hempstead is like a sour patch kid. You got your sour parts of the city, nahmean. You got you sour parts of the town where it could go down at; where a nigga could kill you at. Then you got your other parts of the city that are almost the suburbs. You know how they give us that? Those urban areas. Hempstead is a sour patch kid.
You wouldn’t believe it, right, but my mom, she used to have me in the choir in church when I was like twelve years old. For real, she put me in the choir, like I had to wake up every Saturday morning. And you know how Saturday mornings are for you when you’re eleven, twelve years old; Saturday mornings is over. You can’t touch my Saturday mornings. I don’t wake up on Saturday.
What’s crazy is I’m not a—I do write poetry, in a sense. In a sense I write poetry. But actual poems— No, I don’t write. I don’t write actual poems.
My mother used to wake me up, me and my brother, she used to put us in button-ups and some slacks, bring us to the church, and we used to have to sing. And I never really minded because I wanted to sing. I wanted to be the dude who sang.
But when I was in eighth grade, I had this English teacher who had us write poems. I recited this poem called “Jail”. I remember I was telling you my brother had did the eight year bid; so, it was just, I had a couple phone conversations with him and he told me what his life was like in there, and I just decided to write about it since we had to write something. So I wrote something. And a lot of it was just jail seen through his eyes: From the phone calls, the letters he had written my mother, the letters he had written my sister. He wrote me letters. He wrote my brother letters—he wrote us all letters while he was in jail. He made sure he kept in contact with us. You know. So I just wrote a poem about the gravity of the things that he was telling me. And my English teacher loved it. Everybody was just like [ ]. The class was in like awe of the shit. Cause it was like this: I spoke from the reality of jails. He was tellin’ me about being touched in places you don’t wanna be touched; knife fights—knife fights that he told me he done seen; tellin’ me he’s seen dudes get cut from lip to ear, damn near with they face hangin’ out… And that type of shit, when it’s told to you, and you know it’s factual because of where the person is, it becomes real. So it was just like: “Yo. This is what my brother told me jail is like.” And they clapped and everything after it was done. They were like, “Yea that’s awkward as fuck, but it’s cool.”
I am a gangster rapper. I know a lot of guys who’ve done a lot of things, a lot of wild shit. And if you’d have seen them right now you would never know. If you met them right now, and you spoke to them, you would never know they’d murdered somebody. So I never judge a book by its cover, you know?
This shit is real. People get shot. Police come. People get stabbed.
And it becomes the type of shit where it’s like, “Yo, how tough is your town?” “Oh, your town is pussy.” — “Nah, your town is pussy.”
Now these two different towns, whenever they see each other, there’s a big fight.
That’s the fuckin’ devil to me. I don’t think the devil is a nigga with horns. I think the devil is circumstances, and ways that we’re stuck in, nahmean? It’s like certain habits that you can’t break.
Farrakhan was talkin’, and he was talkin’ about Iblis, and he was talkin’ about how Iblis’ nature is a real arrogant nature, and how he thinks he’s just the greatest shit walkin’. He thinks his shit don’t stink.
That mentality is the devil. That “I’m better than you” mentality is the beast that’s inside every man.
I’m just a fan of EPIC shit. Like I love EPIC shit. Like I love listenin’ to an album and being like “I feel like I stepped into a movie.” You feel what I’m sayin’? Like when you put on Illmatic, you feel like you just stepped on, you feel like you just left the project lobby and you on the south side of Jamaica Queens and you seein’ the niggas shakin’ dice, you seein’ every: niggas smoking, niggas panhandling, everybody doin’ something to try to get some bread. And you know, and you hear AZ in the background: “Yo get the grants/you know them Jacksons/but you know what the Jacksons/they go to wifey nahmean.” That’s real. That shit is real. It sound like a movie. So it’s like; if you can successfully set the stage with the opener, you won.
If a nigga can’t build houses, then why should he be building houses? If I’m gonna rap—rap is a skill, rap is a trick—you want me to build you a shitty house?
I don’t need millions of dollars. I don’t need millions of dollars.
I want a fountain. I want a fountain in front of my crib. In ten years, I want to have a nice enough crib to where I could put a fountain like somewhere by the lawn. I need pillars—all of that shit.
And I want a bitch with a fat ass to cook me breakfast every morning. Like a fat donkey booty, my nigga; and just cook me breakfast every morning. She could make whatever she wants. We gon’ smoke a couple blunts and eat it all.