Tag Archives: rhymesayers

I Can’t Stop With a Love Like Mine

16 Oct

Alright yall… this is about to be a weird post. I’m here to talk about Prof but I’m also here to get emotional. Let me take you on a little journey…

Several years ago, I stumbled across the great MN hip-hop hidden gem that is PROF. I had heard his name around before and never took much interest, but once I pressed play on that first song I found (Animal!) I was hooked. He had a handlebar mustache and a music video filled with sock puppets, but there was something undeniably captivating about his energy, and I instantly began scouring YouTube for more. Completely obsessed from the jump, it wasn’t more than a month or so after discovering him that I set out to attend my first Prof show. At that time the shows were still pretty small, I packed up and drove from Duluth to a little bar in St. Cloud to check out the scene.

LIFE. CHANGED.

A surprisingly charismatic party boy not afraid to take himself too seriously, from the moment Prof took the stage it was nothing but love and good times. I’m a frequent concert-goer, and as a 5 foot nothing ball of energy who needs to fight her way to the front row in order to see the stage, I was used to having to knock elbows and cop an attitude to get to where I needed to be. I will never forget my surprise when my friend and I came up behind a group of college-aged guys all standing right against the stage who overheard my excitement about seeing Prof for the first time, and one turned around and exclaimed, “Wait – this is your first Prof show?! Oh man you’re in for a treat — here, you guys need to stand in front of us!” and made room for my friend and I to get prime front-and-center viewing. I present to you: the Gampo family. Throughout my years of superfanning over Prof, you have probably heard me say time and time again that there is no fan base like Prof’s. Because he’s been flying under the media’s radar for almost a decade, his promotion has been mostly word-of-mouth. This has created an extended network of loyal Gampos, a web weaved through passion and dedication and a little bit of party, and that family mentality is undeniable at any event. Not only is there tons of love between fans, but the way we are treated by Prof himself and his management team is completely unmatched in the industry. But I’m getting ahead of myself…

First Prof Show :)

Very first Prof show – St. Cloud, MN

Back to my own ride.

That night in St. Cloud my world was rocked and my expectations for live music would never again be the same. Caught up in the energy, the passion, and the pure love of the art– I was hooked. Prof said he came to party with us- and he meant it. The show was completely interactive, fans were getting pulled up on stage and sang to, pointed out and recognized in the crowd, shots were poured, it was like a huge dysfunctional family reunion. We got our picture taken with Prof after the show, and I was completely starstruck. Instantly I became “that fan”… tweeting at him nonstop (and to my surprise and excitement, discovering that he actually makes a point to talk back to his fans), bumping his music, ordering merch, making all my friends listen to his albums, and constantly waiting for that next concert. Luckily with Prof being a Minneapolis native, I never had to go longer than a few months without finding a show within a couple hours driving distance. And it was always the same: go to shows, buck out, jump around, scream the words, learn some new ones, make friends in the crowd, wait for Prof after the show to get a picture taken, and giddily yell in his face “OMG THAT WAS AMAZING I LOVE YOU SO MUCH” before scampering off to wherever the rest of the night would take me.

As time went on and I began travelling further to get to more and more shows, he started tweeting me back more often, chatting with me comfortably in person, liking the pictures I posted on Instagram. Like I said before, Prof is crazy charismatic and treats his fans like gold, so I knew it was just what he did and still assumed I was another blank face in the crowd. Until Soundset 2014 which was probably the day I have fangirled the hardest of my entire life. I went up for my turn in the meet & greet line, and when I walked up Prof yells “HEYYYYY!” as if he recognized me, and then he actually told me that he did. “Whatever, you probably say that everyone!” I said back to him, and when he responded by knowing my name before I had to say it– I was completely floored. I literally almost started crying. “YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT THAT MEANS TO ME!” I blubbered at him like a psycho. And he got serious for a minute and said, “Nah for real, I know who the real fans are, who keep coming around and talking to us and reaching out. You think I don’t see you, but I see you!” and I can’t even describe to you the feeling of being validated like that by someone that you look up to and respect (and fangirl over!) so much. That was when it really hit home. This dude is legit. This movement is for real.

Soundset 2014

Soundset 2014 Meet & Greet

So, I could write for hours about everything that has happened since then, the memories made and bonds created. In the fall of 2014, Prof went on the North of Hell Tour with Atmosphere and Dem Atlas, and I followed them around the country wherever I could. Driving, flying, staying up all night to get home in time for work, it was incredible. And in every city, every state, I was shown nothing but love. At a show in San Diego, CA I had one of Prof’s managers come up to me for the first time. We were sitting and waiting to get a picture with Prof after the show, when this guy comes up to me and goes – “Omg! You’re Laura, aren’t you!? You’re from Minnesota! We all know you, we see you everywhere!” and that was when I met Mike. One of the guys on Prof’s original team, and one of the coolest, kindest, and hardest working guys I know. The family keeps growing.

Over the past year and a half I’ve met more and more of the crazy back-busting team who run around behind the scenes making this whole movement possible, I finally officially joined the street team, and oh- I spent my birthday at a Prof show in Jacksonville, FL, where I had my birthday announced from the stage. I’ve been to upwards of twenty PROF shows, seen him live in seven different states, and am gearing up to hit multiple stops on the Liability Tour that’s about to kick off. I’ve got PROF tattoos, a voicemail from Prof himself on my phone, and photos of him holding my dog. In making all of these points I’m not trying to brag up myself, I’m bragging up an artist who has the genuine love for his fans to make a point of doing all of this stuff. There’s nothing special about me, I’m just one of many who take their passion and loyalty for this team to the next level. There are tons of other fans who are well known by Prof, his team, recognized at shows, called out on social media, and generally treated like gold. That’s the craziness of it all. It never ceases to amaze me, but like I mentioned before, it’s why Prof’s fan base is MASSIVE even with little-to-no media coverage.

And now, we come to the present. To today. It’s 10/16/15. Prof recently signed on with Rhymesayers Entertainment, and today marks his first national album release. He’s been putting out albums for almost a decade, dropping them for free simply for the love of the art. Today, shit gets real. I can’t think of any artist that deserves this more. To finally get the real recognition, and the platform to get noticed by the media and sell some albums. I’ve been listening to this record nonstop since it started streaming yesterday, and it is unlike anything I’ve ever heard before. If you think you know Prof – think again. His styles are all over the board and the emotions are everywhere while still hanging on to that classic PROF party clown theme. I was so excited for this release, but wasn’t expecting to get legit emotional like I have been. I’m so proud not only of Prof, but of everyone behind the scenes putting their blood, sweat, and tears into this record over the past three years. They deserve this more than anyone.

If you like good music, good people, good beats, good vibes, and aren’t easily offended – you need this record. You can find it on iTunes at: http://bit.ly/ProfLiability. Gampo life!

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Zombie Pub Crawl 2014

Zombie Pub Crawl 2014