Way back in the days when the Wu Tang Clan first hit the scene they featured an emcee named Ghostface Killah. Ghost kept his visage covered with either a stocking or a ski mask during the crew's earliest videos and press pictures because he had a case pending and because he thought it added to his mystique as an emcee.
I thought it was a dope idea because you had nothing to judge him on other than his lyrics or the consistency of his bars/verses throughout his career rather than other perimeter shit. I also thought about the whole superhero/supervillain dynamic when you never get to see their faces and you have to take them who they claim to be and judge them solely on their actions.
In 1996, before Nas released his second album "It Was Written" he did an interview with The Source and he discussed how he wished he could just rhyme without all the other bullshit involved in the industry. He remarked about how ill he thought Ghostface Killah was because all he had to do was just lay down his verses and that was it.
Photo shoots and videos wouldn't be overpowered by his image because all that mattered was how he came off on that track he was on. Of course, once Tony Starks face was revealed to the world his career changed immediately. Now it was about expanding on his image, the wallabees, the bathrobes over the clothes and the golden eagle bracelet. Before no one knew what he looked like none of that ever came into play.
Nas' comments were overblown by the Hip Hop media and fans alike but I completely understood what he meant. What if Biggie was allowed to remain the grimy Brooklyn ex-drug dealer with the army jacket over the jeans and Timberlands rather than becoming the suited playa/Big Poppa/Frank White that Diddy turned him into?
What if Kimberly Jones never adopted Nelda (The Original Queen Bee)'s whole image and stayed herself? Would she have still gotten so much plastic surgery if she felt she was enough already? Think about Inga Marchand and how different her career would have been if we only focused on her bars and NOT her bras. Remember how girls responded to Method Man when they first saw him? Why do you think Def Jam made it such a point to sign him?
Think about the people you add to MySpace/Facebook/Twitter every day. Appearance and image matters. I personally focus on content rather than flashy shit in my every day life so I figured if I was going to commit to that philosophy in my writing and commentary then I couldn't be a hypocrite.
All you have to judge me on currently is my previous body of work and/or my current material if you want to add me on MySpace/Facebook/Twitter, etc. Once I finally end this whole anonymous charade watch how the entire game will change or how.
Epilogue: The time's going to come when I close this blog and everything changes. I'm not worried or even concerned because while things will change I'll welcome them. I'm not going to write any differently or be any different, though. The only thing that will change is that people will realize that I look a lot like that drawing of Luke Cage. If I couldn't stand your music or blog before I'll still hate you. If you're in the metro Boston area you'll be seeing me around soon.
One of my industry friends asked me recently if I wanted some free Beats By Dre headphones & I told him I wouldn't be caught dead rocking those overpriced ass headphones. I instead copped a couple pairs of Sony MDR-XD100's from Amazon. Ain't nothing gonna change but the year & the URL. Believe me on that.