Thursday, July 28, 2011

Rhymes: FlamesYall&Goose - StudyAbroad (Free Download/Stream)

After 11 months of hard work, it is finally here. My long-awaited concept album with British beatsmith, FlamesYall. This is easily my best work I've ever done, and I can't express how proud I am of this album nor how eager I am for people to listen to it. FlamesYall is an incredibly gifted beat maker, and I am totally blessed to be able to rap over his beats (for free even!). If his music catches the right ear, he could be lacing some big time names, he's that good. And while I may not be the greatest rapper, have the best flow, struggle with breath control, and have a super whiteboy voice, I feel like my story is interesting for an audience:

StudyAbroad is my story and it's your story. After working out a rough narrative with FlamesYall, I studied various texts and my peers to really get inspiration for this album. This album is about a man in his early 20s figuring himself out basically. The protagonist of StudyAbroad is a reflection of me, my roommates, other close friends, Rob Gordon (High Fidelity), Brian O'Halloran (Clerks), Ed Norton's character in Fight Club and a bunch of other characters from the texts I've read/watched/listened to (I'll post a list of my influences later). I wanted to tell a story about a young man, who struggled with masculinity and how to treat women, while trying to figure out what to do with the rest of his life and where he stands in the world.

The Narrative:
The protagonist, Goose, is about to graduate college and has his whole life figured out. He plans on spending his entire summer with his long-time girlfriend, whom he plans to marry one day. This will be his last opportunity to relax before he has to get a job, get married, and enter the real world. His plans fall apart when he gets a phone call from his girlfriend, who inexplicably breaks up with him out of the blue. He shortly there after finds out that he does not have enough credits to graduate so he must take classes during the summer in order to graduate before the fall.

Goose decides to enroll in classes in England, to get away from everything for a summer. First he must face his fear of getting on an airplane, something he's never done before, and leaving his home state of Ohio, also something he had never done. After arriving in England, he goes out to various pubs and night clubs to forget his woes and have some fun. He gets really drunk and meets an attractive English lass and sleeps with her. Upon waking up, he sees that his ex-girlfriend is already in a new relationship only 2 weeks after splitting up with him. He immediately assumes she had been cheating on him, which enrages and confuses him as he feels empty after leaving his one night stand's pad and waiting for the bus to take him to school.

Goose has a class taught by a professor named FlamesYall, who asks to see him after class. They meet at a pub, and over drinks the protagonist tells him all about the troubles he's been having with his ex, his brother going to the hospital, and many other problems with his friends and family. This causes him to feel useless because he can't help them because he is so far away. After FlamesYall leaves the pub, Goose gets drunk and reflects on life and compares his life to other people whom he graduated with. And finally he realizes how much he misses his ex, until he sees that she is calling him.

After months of silence between the two, she calls him crying saying that she had just broken up with her new boyfriend and that she missed him. Goose, who is extremely drunk, scorns her for dumping him with no reason. When he finally gets home, he passes out and has a dream about the good old days with his girl. He wakes up to a voicemail from her explaining that the reason they broke up was that she was with him so long, she didnt know who she really was, and that she needed time away from him to figure out who she was. She also explains that she is thinking about getting back together with him, but she might move to Rome, Italy to get away for a while. After listening to the voicemail, Goose again reflects on their relationship and saw how that it was very juvenile and he decided that he wants her back.

After fighting a rough hangover, Goose gets a sort of epiphany. He starts to realize that life isn't holding him back, but rather if he wants something he has to put in the work and get it himself. So after finally finishing his classes and getting his degree, he boards his plane to come back to Ohio. After learning so much in England he is ready to get back with his girl; he plans to ask her to marry him when he gets home. Upon arriving to her house, he sees a note on her door saying that she decided to get away, so she moved to Rome. Instead of being heartbroken, the protagonist, with a new sense of self meets an old friend for a drink. His friend who is the same age, is also married and with a kid, chat about life, and asks Goose if he's happy with where he is in life and the answer is yes even though he's not sure what's in store with his future, he is confident he can handle whatever life throws at him.

And that my friends, is StudyAbroad.

Thank you for reading/listening. I think it's a very relatable story about the dreaded quarterlife crisis, and it doesnt hurt that it's told in the form of sweet raps and dope ass instrumentals.

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