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The Shopping Cart Music Video

22 Feb

This week I found myself attempting to do a lot of deep breathing exercises.

(I was a figure skater in another life, so I’ve done yoga and pilates and just about every trendy thing that was all the fitness rage in the 90s.)

I brought my arms above my head while inhaling.

*Paused for a count of three*

Then dropped those hands back down with a nice, relaxing exhale.

After a few minutes, I felt centered, relaxed, and calm.

Or not.

Stress is one of those things that haunt us throughout our lives. Sometimes I get that fever feeling when I’m overwhelmed. I don’t know where to go next or how to turn.

My face burns like I’m sick, but I know it’s just the strain of the day. As much as I want to conquer that panic mountain, sometimes I can’t.

No yoga, pilates, or deep breathing will save me.

It was one of those weeks. If you had one of those weeks, I’m sorry. I know I can’t fix it, but I care. *virtual hugs*

You might be wondering how that relates to the title of this post.

While I’ve been attempting to finish my deadline book (due March 7th in case you’re wondering), I’ve also been hoping and dreaming that one of my ultimate wishes would come true.

That my super, fantastic idea might finally enter the world into existence.

Something that would solve all the universe’s problems.

Everything would be perfect.

If only…

I could make The Shopping Cart Music Video happen.

The Shopping Cart is a dance move that I really wish I could videotape. I haven’t quite figured out how to do it (mental roadblocks). I’m not entirely sure I ever will.

It’s nothing fancy.

Imagine walking down the aisle at a grocery store—with a little pep to your step—while pretending to place items into your imaginary basket.

YES, it’s as awesome as it sounds.

You might want to use fake cans like this:

Cans, Olives, Kinley Baker, Romance Author, The Shopping Cart, Dance Moves

Or, well, I guess this (since they’re fake):

Cans, Olives, Kinley Baker, Romance Author, The Shopping Cart, Dance Moves

In my mind, I rent out a supermarket and play some hardcore music.

*taps foot to the beat*

Someone plays lead and pretends to start the dance like this wasn’t planned. No, no. This was an accident.

The music comes on full force, people gather around, and then there’s that fake pause, as though no one knows what’s going on.

But then whaaat?

Flash mob!

We all do The Shopping Cart up and down the aisles.

I can see it like it’s already been filmed.

The vision makes me happy. So, so happy.

In my happy place, I am an amazing dancer.

Sometimes we just need to take a deep breath and dance a little. Whether it’s a ridiculous move like The Shopping Cart, or a simple side-to-side shuffle, when life gets stressful, everyone should dance.

Life would be better if it were a musical. I wish I could sing. Laaa…

I dream about a world in which YouTube embraced The Shopping Cart Music Video.

This always makes me think of Footloose. I am such a sucker for angry dance scenes. It doesn’t matter if they’re good or bad. Every time, I want to yell at the screen, you just dance it out!

What do you think? How do you deal with stress? Have you ever wondered if life would be brighter if you could bust out into song?

Don’t be shy. This is a blog, so we don’t actually expect you to sing. You can even pretend you’re a great singer here. No judgment.

If you tell me you’re a great dancer, I believe you. Just like I will pretend I am a great dancer. You won’t know differently until I post a video and show you. Don’t expect a video anytime soon. Unless it’s The Shopping Cart Music Video!

Have an excellent weekend. And remember to dance.

Also, my favorite part of this blog post is when I told my husband: “I need to take a picture of cans.”

I’m not telling you his response.

Kinley Baker (@kinleybaker)

Revolutionizing Rap One Non-Hardcore Person At A Time

11 Feb

Music, Musical Notes, Rap, Kinley Baker, Romance Author

I never realized how dirty the music I listen to is until someone caught me chair dancing to S&M by Rihanna. When that awkward silence stretches, the meanings of the words have never been so clear.

Completely awkward…

There’s really no recovering from that. That person will never view you the same again.

(If you really want to freak them out, start leaving handcuffs in your desk. Just kidding, don’t blame me if you do that and it ends badly.)

And of course the other times people come over it’s men rapping about women inappropriately. When I get caught listening to those hardcore songs I just want to say: I don’t support men talking about women that way. Of course not!

But then I bring in my headphones and I listen to these songs anyway. Because I secretly want to be badass, but I don’t want anyone to know that I think I’m badass.

Basically, I don’t want to listen to songs about taking away female empowerment, but I do want people to positively rap more so I can listen to their beats.

Can’t a man rap about how much he loves his commitment to his family? Is that really too much to ask for? That kind of YouTube video would make my day. (But if you do it, it has to be GOOD. Like Eminem GOOD.)

We should encourage men to rap about funny things. I want a busted out song about how a man went to college and lived on his mother’s couch for four years. You know, reality.

I think you can still be hardcore if we redefine hardcore. Rap about how you work forty hours to feed your family. That’s positive! That’s sexy. Put it to a beat, man. Or woman. No discrimination here.

It’s kind of funny because I wrote the beginning of this blog post and then I found myself talking about it in real life. I watched the show Broke on ESPN and brought it up to a guy at work. In case you’re wondering, yes the special did make me cry.

It was basically about athletes losing all their money. $50 million dollars gone. I know. I can’t even imagine.

I ended up feeling sorry for the guys, which proves whoever put together the show did a great job.

Somehow this conversation turned into a discussion on dancing. And the guy said: “Girls like music in which the lyrics tell them what to do.”

And my first instinct was: “Nuh uh!”

Women are strong and awesome and men should respect them!

But then he brought up the “to the wall” song and I realized that his words are actually kind of true. In my experience, women always cheer when one of these instructional songs come on when they’re out on the dance floor.

My theory is that dancing is awkward, and if the song tells us to point to the damn wall, or drop it like it’s hot, it’s less awkward. I enjoy dancing more when I’m not standing frozen in the middle of the dance floor wondering how to move my body.

No instructions leads to very bad things like the shopping cart and the salt and pepper shaker. Those were actually my signature moves in high school.

I brought up my new idea to revolutionize the rap industry during this conversation. That if people just rapped about working full time, the world would be a better place.

I love music. I’m a huge fan. When I listen to rap, it makes me feel hardcore in the way I rarely feel because I’m not at all. I’m like 5’3’’, soft around the edges, and often look lost. I’ve just accepted this about myself. Not hardcore. (But crazy… and highly dangerous… in case you’re getting ideas about preying on the poor, innocent, wide-eyed doe.)

My headphones are my shield against the world. Sometimes I think I could deal with the apocalypse if I put on some Eminem to pull me through. You think you have problems, zombies? Listen to this ish…

That’s real problems, man.

I guess I should summarize the point of this post. The point so often gets lost in my real life writing, but I promise my fiction writing always has a plot.

Go write awesome rap songs that glorify equality and human rights. I will support you. But only if you’re good. I’ve kind of got a rep I don’t want to wreck. I’m kidding again… I don’t have a rep. Unless I do… That would be awesome.

Who’s running for their video cameras right now? Are you onboard with The Rap Revolution? Can you rap? Do you know of videos like this with a positive message? Let me see! Post the links!

Kinley Baker (@kinleybaker)