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At this point the hustle, the career and the personal life was becoming too much to bear. So I left my job in order to focus on the later two, which resulted in me moving back to DC. I was back at home and I was ready to take the local hip-hop scene by storm. I was booking hip-hop shows all over but the turning point was when I was asked to participate in a producer showcase. That was when some of my colleagues started asking about my other talents. "You produce? You're singing on this record? You played the keys?" Well, um, yeah but I GOT BARS TOO. But those questions made me re-examine some things. I did a send off show before hitting the road for the first time in March and started experimenting with some different aspects of my set. Some things worked, most things didn't. Bottom line, it still wasn't unique enough. My second stop on tour though, I met an artist that was unlike any artist I had ever seen before. He went by the name of Tall Tall Trees.

The Wild Card - Tall Tall Trees

I had missed out on Tall Tall Trees when he came to DC but I had some friends who were RAVING about his set. Small world, we were gonna be sharing the same venue. He took the stage with his looping station, his effects board and this mechanical banjo-looking thing. I didn't believe I could be wowed by a banjo, folk music isn't really my jam. Then he started playing, beating on his banjotron (it lights up) and strumming away. He was a one man band. His lyrics were engaging. He crossfaded in and out of different beats. He created a few new instruments during his set. He did it all. There were points in the set where people had their hands on their heads in disbelief and the next minute had their hands in the air like a scene from 8 Mile. I had never been so captivated in my life. I didn't even have any words for him afterwards except "dude, we gotta work together soon!"

I spend a lot of time internally regretting not trying to get to where I am today earlier in my life, and unnecessarily so. These little nuggets of inspiration were required for me to be the artist I currently am and it's something I still haven't even grasped fully yet. I do still dabble in some of these creative outlets though. I'm gonna be pulling out the old DJ board here soon, I had the most amazing encounter with a person who's inspired me to learn Debussy's "Clair de Lune"  and my email is filling up with rappers who want a 16. I also dole out a cappella arrangements here and there.

Looking back on the journey, maybe I haven't missed out at all.
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