Everything about this interview/story is DOPE!
Cleveland’s own J-Star of Rhyme & Reason, dropped the visuals from his new single, “Sandbox Livin,” filmed in NYC. Produced by yours truly. #CLASS
I know I’m late on this….but last month I had the privilege of interviewing producer/multi-instrumentalist/engineer, Mike Dean. Dean is a legend in the game, his career spanning 30 years starting in his days in his native Houston, TX pioneering the Dirty South sound of Rap-A-Lot Records. He is now one of Kanye West’s in-house producers/engineers at G.O.O.D. Music. S/O to VICE for the opportunity to speak with such a legend.
Dope new visual from the hometown homie MC TKool (@DopestAmerica) | #CLASS
What Is CLASS?
So, I’ve decided that I’m going to do my best to start blogging again. It’s been a while since the world has heard from me in editorial form. Some of you may remember my blogging days at SoulerSpace! back in my college days. Well, times have changed since my SoulKlap days. I now go by my GOVT’ name, ARCHIE GREEN.
Many of you know my brand/lifestyle which is CLASS is the Life. However, I’m also sure most of you don’t totally know what I mean when I make that statement. I’d have to say that my CLASS lifestyle was first inspired by Mr. Ouigi Theodore, Creative Director of Brooklyn-based and nostalgic urban clothing brand, Brooklyn Circus. It was also inspired by the likes of Mr. Joshua Kissi and Mr. Travis Gumbs, co-founders of the fashion/lifestyle Men’s blog, Street Etiquette. CLASS was initially inspired by their style. It was a return to the essence of what style was for a Black man in America. Whether it was the driver caps that “The Bearded Man” (Mr. Theodore’s nickname due to his trademark beard) donned, or the brogue boots matched with cuffed jeans & cardigan sweaters that were available at the BKc website; it could also have been inspired by the now legendary Black Ivy post by J. Kissi & Travis at Street Etiquette which notably had graduates of Black Ivy league colleges and universities including my alma mater, Morehouse College. The looks themselves were of CLASS and dignity. There was no sagging of the pants, there was no flashy Jordan sneakers, or emphasis on brand name items in these gentlemen’s wardrobe. It was basic, yet elegant.
However, what I realized was that CLASS is more to me than just style. CLASS is the way that you treat a woman, it’s the way you shake someone’s hand, it’s also the way you look someone in the eye when you are engaged in conversation. CLASS is Miles Davis & John Coltrane. CLASS is Marvin Gaye & Stevie Wonder. CLASS is Martin Luther King, Jr. & Malcolm X. CLASS is Billie Holiday & Lena Horne. In other words, CLASS is rooted in the rich heritage and history of what it used to be, to be Black in America. Back when we treated our elders with the upmost respect. When it was more fashionable to wear a freshly shined pair of hard bottoms than the latest Jordan sneaker to drop (although I still have 4 pairs that I can’t seem to let go of). When having an education and constantly learning was cool.
CLASS stands for: Creatively Learning to Achieve Sustainable Success. I’m an advocate for learning. I’ve got two degrees now to prove it! There’s not a day that I wake up that I don’t learn something new. In fact, I always feel weird if my mind isn’t stimulated in someway shape or form throughout the day. Knowledge is power. The mind is a terrible thing to waste. The two previous terms, though cliche to many, are factual. It is my life’s mission to continue to motivate, inspire and encourage people of all walks to Creatively Learn to Achieve Sustainable Success. The medium from which I do this at the present date is through my music. But I’d love to engage in public speaking, or write posts like this one to push the CLASS brand/lifestyle to the world. CLASS is style and manners, and dignity and all that jazz. However it is also a responsibility that we all have with the brain that God gave us all at birth, to use it to chase our dreams, succeed and pass it on.
So the next time someone asks you, “What is CLASS?” feel free to give them ARCHIE GREEN‘s definition.
CLASS is the Life.