The Underdog’s Manifesto – Book Review
Monday July 16th 2007,
Filed under: Books,Reviews,Steady Bootleggin',Video Clips
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In a bizarre twist of fate, I was recently sent a couple of books to check out from an indy publisher, and the first one I tackled appeared to be one of those corny “rap business guides” at first glance, but actually turned out to have a major connection to my on-going series looking at Hydra Entertainment. What are the odds, right? Turns out this Creature guy (who wrote the majority of this book) was a member of the Triflicts – who released one of the first singles on the label in ’96 and also counted Beatnuts associate Gab Gotcha as a third of the trio. Hydra only gets mentioned for a couple of paragraphs, and it’s not exactly flattering, but it sparked my interest enough to keep reading this thing instead of downloading porn.

With the exception of the unecessary survey in the middle of the book and the god-awful drawings of the other artists interviewed, this is a fascinating insight into the process behind physically selling your own music. When people started reporting sighting lyrical legend Percee-P hawking his home-made CD’s out the front of Fat Beats in New York, most assumed that it was a sign of desperate has-been trying to scare up some funds for his next crack rock. But if this guide is to be believed, these guys are actually making a steady income by putting their balls on the line and hitting the pavement every day to sling their CD’s.

As you’ll see in the clip below, it takes a certain kind of humility determination to try and sell a rap CD to everyone from squares in suits to cranky old ladies, and I can tell you that I possess neither of these attributes so it’s highly unlikely that I could ever make it as an indy rapper if I wasn’t already a “world famous” writing-about-rap guy. The only disappointing aspect of Creature’s story is the fact that he felt the need to stop drinking hooch and smacking people around, which is generally regarded as the sixth element of this hip-hop ish. Nevertheless, The Underdog’s Manifesto doesn’t overstay it’s welcome, clocking-in at a sensible page count for all you A.D.D. motherfuckers out there (which is pretty much everyone these days) and offering an interesting glimpse into the grassroots of the music game.

MF Doom feat. Creature – Open Mic Nite Part 2

Triflicts – Don’t Make Me Try

Promo reel for the book:

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7 Comments so far
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I respect people that hit the pavement like that. If someone comes up to me with their CD, I always buy it if I have the cash on me because I really respect that grind.

Comment by Mike G 07.16.07 @

that guys a complete prick, using annoying persistance, bordering on intimidation to sell cds. Obviously the little guy has to start somewhere but you cant get offended when people refuse to buy a cd they havnt heard anything of about, it makes no sense. Its like giving money to every beggar in the street. In my case i ended up giving this ‘creature’ 5 dollars for his cd so he would just leave me alone. Surely if he had just given the cd to me for free and i had taken it back to London where i am from and played to friends he would get better exposure, but no he had to be pushy. Just like i thought the cd was complete shit even though it had some quite high profile featuring artists. I ended up leaving it on the long island rail road on the way back to JFK.

Comment by george 07.16.07 @

Shameless plug… I have a Creature interview here…

Comment by A to the L 07.16.07 @

I see guys like this in Hollywood all the time. I’m always getting accosted by dudes standing next to wrapped vans with slim case CDs emulating whatever’s popular down south. I don’t dis ’em though–I respect the entrepreneurial spirit. But I just wish they were pushing something I’d be interested in listening to.

Comment by Finally 07.18.07 @

“that guys a complete prick, using annoying persistance, bordering on intimidation to sell cds”

Ha! I must have missed that chapter.

Comment by Robbie 07.18.07 @

i would’ve downloaded more porn…

Comment by alphastart 07.25.07 @

only a few have the balls to do with this man does.
stop whinin and start grindin

Comment by kenny 11.29.07 @

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