Last week I did a 'behind the scenes' photo-shoot for one of my homies, Des Moines hip-hop artist King Capo. It was interesting seeing all the people most folks would call thugs come out and organize a fathers day BBQ and video shoot. Aside from a little tension, it was all jesus that day. I know a lot of people that happen to make music. Myself included. For most people it winds up being nothing more than a fantasy that one day gives into reality - the reality that you are not as awesome as you think you are. But the funny thing is, some of us really are awesome, but'll never get a chance to share that awesomeness with the world. Its a shame what circumstances like your race or gender or even the zip code your born in can really mean to a persons chances at success. For me, its always good to see people committed to progress, both their own and the people around them, despite what ever circumstances they come from. I grew up in hoods all around the midwest and the south, so I know what its like to not have a way out, or have it seem like there is no way out. In these conditions people sometimes give up and let life live them and life has a way of grinding people into to nothing. Others find confidence in themselves and their abilities (sometimes that ability is selling crack, but we'll talk about that some other time) and come to realize that the way out of the hood/poverty/prison-cycle, is a course that only the individual can set for themselves. That's why stay close to the hood. Conducting business, work and school keep me away from the streets regularly (and that's probably a good thing), but I'm around enough to help when and where I can and to remind me that no matter how far I go in my career(s) and in life, there are people dealing with a life and living in a world they feel they have no control over, and I don't ever want to back to feeling like that. Click here to see full gallery.