It’s the year 1997, I’ve just turned 8 and I’m pestering my older brother who’s listening to a cassette tape of Tiro de Gracia, a national rap group and I don’t give up until he hands me the Walkman and introduces me to my first experience with Hip Hop. I fell in-love with the rhyming and the beats and just couldn’t get enough of the music. Forward to 2001, I’m already a fan of the genre and so are the people I hang out with, by now we have already been introduced to AudioGalaxy (I think) and we are able to get our hands on tracks from the US and Spain, shit was crazy we couldn’t believe the quality of music we were getting and its all we talked about.
I was really into Spanish Hip Hop, there was something about the lyrics, the philosophy and the way of seeing life that I just felt connected too. At the same time my parents were going through a divorce, we were being dragged to court and shit, my brother had gone to live with dad while I stayed with mom, I was getting kicked out of school and everything just seemed gloomy and shitty. But I look back now and the memories aren’t dark, I mean a bunch of kids (99% of my friends at least) go through a divorce so we had each other for support, but I’m pretty sure listening to hip hop helped me keep a mental sanity during that period of life, it gave me a perspective that not everyone see’s life the same way, that we all go through struggles and that others definitely have it worst than I do. The best part? I never stopped falling back on Hip Hop, even today when I’m going through some hardships I can put on some songs that just help me get out of my head and balance it all out.
Like yeah I grew up and today I can listen to whatever, as long as its a good tune, but the h2 genre will always be number 1 for me and its because I truly think that listening to those artists and groups as a kid shaped my views (being kind and empathetic, stuff like judging a book by its cover; just because you don’t wear baggy pants doesn’t mean you can’t be a rapper or wtv) and the philosophy I learned with the music is big part of who I am today.
I’m not a rapper, or a DJ or a breaker, I do like to beat box sometimes but I will always listen to Hip Hop, so thank you all for being part of the culture and I’d love to hear about your experience with the music.
Here’s a translated part of a song that means a lot to me.
ghosts of the past breathe into your neck
and things are more rotten than ever
envious those who call themselves colleagues
set traps, obstacles, empty pockets
feet that hurt when you walk
alone against the world and with nothing to lose
with the soul of a tramp and with a lot of rap to do
so as not to go crazy, in order to grow…
Happy Holidays ya’ll, much love from Chile,