The Swag Jam Berlin at Badehaus Szimpla
Rocked the Swag Jam at Badehaus Szimpla in Berlin. They have a great Tuesday night jam session where the Swag Band often highlights a special guest performer. On one breezy late spring evening that special guest was Hank McCoy. The Swag band learned a medley of my songs from my Hank in Power album for Swag Jam Berlin. The crowd was a good one too. Young hip kids, politically minded rappers, graffiti writers taking a break from bombing Berlin, young Turks bobbing their heads hoping for some rap with a message and plenty of happy faces there to party all night.
When I got to the gig soundcheck was just beginning, the keyboardist of the band had written out the music for my tracks and him and the drummer were trying to wrap their heads around some of the strange percussion that my producer MUTT had arranged for this album. They took to it pretty damn easily and anyone who has listened to Hank in Power can tell it is anything but a simplistic style of production. But none the less they picked it up in no time at all.
When the lead guitarist of the group got there (a fellow South Floridian who has lived in Berlin for years since leaving the military) he looked at me, “You produce the music on these tracks?” “No, that would be my producer MUTT.” “Well that mothafucker must’ve been on drugs when made these joints.”
Playing at the Swag Jam Berlin
By the time I went on, there was roughly a hundred or more people in the crowd, good considering I was new to Berlin. It was a grand experience. Hip Hop runs through the veins of the place and it felt good to be able to become a part of what they had going on at the Swag Jam.
Playing with the Swag Band in Berlin for the Swag Jam, it felt good to play with such talented artists. I had used to play with a band years ago, but it never even came close to comparing with what went down that Tuesday Night at Berlin’s Badehaus Szimpla in the Raw District.
Badehaus Jam Complete
After the set I sparked a joint and headed outside to the beer garden where I was met with smiles and praise. People really liked what had went down on stage. The band had a blast and it showed in the performance. My lyrics and beat selection tends to be more complex and boundary pushing in nature, so I am often leary of things coming across properly.
One person that stood out was a young woman, maybe twenty five, Palestinian and gorgeous. I recognized her from the front row. She had made a comment during the song Big Titty Hit while I was performing at Swag Jam Berlin.
She marched right up to me, and without hesitation she said, “I liked your set. Do you live in Berlin?”
“No, I’m kind of just traveling around playing some shows and meeting new people. Do you?”
“Yes. But I am originally from Palestine. You are very good! Your words. They are strong. What you said up there was something else. We need more artists like you.”
Personally I don’t really attempt to get across too much of a message when I write, but it’s unavoidable. People are going to hear your words, but they will take them and make what they make out of them. It’s an interesting thing. It’s the reason why I don’t look at my writing being mine anymore once I decide to put it out into the world. It also makes me realize how little it matters what I was trying to get across. Because it’s more important what the individual listening gets from it.
“There was one song though. I forget the name.”
She smiled, she had a great smile, “Yes!”
“Was that you who voiced your outrage when I said the title of the track when I was up there?”
She smiled again, again a great smile, “Yes, you fooled me. I was expecting to be appalled by the song, but then you start to rap and I couldn’t help but laugh. I liked that song. It wasn’t what I was expecting.”
ProTip: Download Hank in POWER on soundcloud below.