Ever since elementary school, I've wanted to be a rapper. In third grade, a kid on the school bus let me listen to his Walkman. It was Raising Hell by Run DMC, and it was the illest shit I had ever heard. A couple years later, my mom's friend introduced me to N.W.A., and my head exploded. My memories of junior high are but a blurry, frenzied medley of Dre Day, O.P.P., and Mama Said Knock You Out. My freshman year of high school was the pinnacle of classic hip hop: Wu-Tang dropped 36 Chambers, Cypress Hill dropped Black Sunday, and Eazy E took shots at Dre with his flawless album, It’s On (Dr. Dre) 187um Killa. Snoop dropped Doggystyle, Outkast dropped Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik, and Nas dropped Illmatic, still considered by many to be the greatest hip hop album ever made.

And amid this feast of fresh rap flavor, I caught a whiff of punk rock. Again it was one of my mom's friends who corrupted me. He had a cassette with Circle Jerks' Golden Shower of Hits on one side and Suicidal Tendencies' first album on the other. This was the sickest shit I had ever heard! I lived up the street from this punk rock kid who would cut class and get stoned with me. He had a tape of The Exploited's Apocalypse 77 with Misfits' Walk Among Us on the other side. My head was exploding all over again. Suddenly I wanted to be a punk.

I stayed into punk for the next couple decades, doing all the typical dumb punk shit. I played drums in a few punk bands, did vocals in a couple others. But my appreciation for hip hop never dwindled. I spent years secretly scrawling rap lyrics into notebook after notebook, troubled by the notion that my desire to be a rapper was somehow at odds with my punk rock identity.

Eventually I became overwhelmed by the urge to simply do whatever the fuck I felt like doing, and here I am. My sound lacks polish. My scope lacks focus. But I'm doing what I've always wanted to do, and if that ain't punk, then fuck you.