As much as we all claim to know the power of music and its ability to bring people together—31-year-old Chicago based rapper Show You Suck has actually seen it.
“In the past year, maybe the year before, my mom and dad started coming to my shows. This is the first time in my life I’ve seen my parents date. Like, things got rekindled because they were coming to my shows together. It’s crazy. In every good way possible,” he said, a bit breathlessly.
Show possesses a love for music that is deep enough to be objective at some points – it’s as if he disassociates, holding opinions about his work from the perspective of an outsider observing his music career. He expresses this state of distant awe with a simple, yet illuminating word: everything is “weird.”
“I love what I do. It’s fucking—it’s weird, it’s hard. It can wreak havoc on your self-esteem and mental health. But with an emphasis on keeping your mental health in check, this shit is fun man, I love it. I do shit on my own schedule. I can be creative every day and fuckin, pay my bills. And I don’t have to be the biggest thing in the world. It’s cool. It’s really fuckin cool.”
And, he does, place an emphasis on sustaining his mental health.
“I think one thing is, overall, I really found out what makes me happy. And I kinda had to train my brain to be happy with the art, and not the result of art,” he said. “And music, especially this age of music, being in Chicago, its highly competitive, and I’m the least competitive person you will ever meet in your life. So, I had to reassess that and bring it back to my creating aspect, and my career. And not the competitive aspect, because I can’t compare myself and my works to other people’s results; I can’t do that. And as soon as I realigned that thinking, everything else became easier.”
It’s not all psychological though. Show actually dedicates a part of every day to mindfulness.
“Even on tour, I wake up with enough time to have an hour or two to myself, as I please. I don’t touch a phone, laptop. For at least an hour and a half, two hours, I don’t take in any outside energies. I just wake up, and do what I wanna do for two hours, you know? Smoke a little weed, and fucking just sit with my thoughts for a couple hours. And it’s crazy how that can set the tone for the rest of your day.”
For more on Show You Suck, get a copy of Issue 002
Words by, Danielle Maya-Banks
Photography by, Felton Kizer