Rappers are so fixated on the cars, the strip clubs and the clothes that they sometimes forget about their pre-fame days. Mike Stud, an up-and-coming MC from Rhode Island, remembers the hard times on “Dreamin’,” a track from his forthcoming RELIEF mixtape.
The song tells the stories of two individuals fighting against the odds - the kid who aspired to be a basketball player despite his below average height and a neglected, molested girl-turned-stripper blessed with the gift of drawing.
In the first verse, the former Duke University baseball star explains the boy’s hoop pursuits, rapping, “wasn’t the most talented but had it in his will.” He got ridiculed because he wasn’t into smoking weed and partying. He stayed focused on his goals and ended up with offers from the top schools to play college ball.
When people asked him how he did it, he said, “I never stopped dreaming.”
The girl Stud discusses in the second verse had more hardships. He rhymes, “Had a mom who did drugs, step dad who got drunk, who would come up in her room late at night and feel her up.”
Her troubles led her to stripping. But she used it as a means to earn enough money to escape.
“Two years past, she had enough to start a new,” Stud says. She moved out and began studying art.
“Walked into the class the first night, [she] never felt so alive in her whole life.”
Stud, who offers a sing-song lyrical flow akin to Drake, benefits from Scott Storch’s fluid storytelling style and knocking, thematic music bed that floats with progressive keys and rumbling snares, tom toms and kick drums.