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Author Interviews Himself About New Hip Hop Book: Hilarity Ensues



I recently had an opportunity to sit down with myself and talk about my first book You Made it a Hot Line; The Most Influential Lines in Hip Hop. I wanted to find out what made me think I should write a book on hip hop and why I thought anyone would even care what I thought. Here’s what happened.


It was an unusually warm winters day when I met up with myself at my messy apartment in Park Slope, Brooklyn. At first glance, I had a haggard look of a deranged wild boar that hadn’t slept in weeks. Red-eyed and frazzled salt and pepper beard in tow, it seemed I had entered a somewhat feral state while working on the book and may have lost all touch with humanity. I tossed myself a slab of raw meat to keep my attention while I asked myself some questions about the book.

How are you doing today?

Yes I understand that and I’ll give you some more in a second after you answer some questions. Is that ok?

First question: Let’s just get it out of the way now. I noticed Nas doesn’t have any lines in the book? How come?
The book isn’t about greatest emcees in hip-hop. It’s about most influential lines. And Nas will more than likely be in Vol 2.

What qualifies you to write a book on hip hop?
The same thing that qualifies you to ask me stupid questions, but I’ll entertain you. I’ve been listening to hip hop since I was 8 years old and I’ve been producing hip hop music for over 16 years. It’s been an integral part of my decision making process in my life and I believe once the reader chimes in, that will be the ultimate measure of if the book is credible or not. It’s all about the fans.

Have you worked with any artist we may have heard of?
Funny you should mention that because you actually mentioned him already. I’ve done production for/worked with Nas, Damien Marley, DV alias Khyrst, Steele (Smif and Wessun), Sha Stimuli, Astro, King Prince and several other artists.

So why should people buy this book?
Because the writing is amazing, the artwork is amazing, nothing of its kind exist, and also, so I can feed my kids.

How old are your kids?
I don’t have any kids.

You just said you had kids.
I know.

So which is it?
Whichever helps me sell more books.

Noted. Why was it so important that you finish this book in 2015?
Because I crossed over to the other side earlier in the year and my biggest take-away from that experience was not to take time for granted. I was working on the book for a while now but had a renewed sense of purpose after my little incident.

What do you mean you “crossed over?”
I died. I suffered sudden cardiac death on the basketball court and my heart stopped. If it wasn’t for some quick thinking people who revived me, there is no book and there is no me.

Alf Hospital
So you suffered from a killer crossover?
That’s funny. Remind me to punch you in your face when you’re not looking.

No need to get hostile, sir. Glad you made it back!
You and me both!

What do you think about the current state of hip hop? Do you think there are lines now that are becoming influential as we speak?
I think some of the most recent lines that have staying power are “You say no to ratchet p*ssy,” “bish don’t kill my vibe,” and a few others.

Are their lines not in the book that you wish would’ve been?
Yeah. There are over 30 lines I think could’ve been in this book. That’s why it’s volume one. There are way too many influential lines in hip hop.

How is this book different than other hip hop books?
I think it’s the combination of my writing style and the artwork. I think I have a writing style that is very vivid and has the ability to take the reader back to that space and time. As it relates to the the artwork, when I spoke to Shah Wonders (the artist), I didn’t give him any specific direction. I wanted him to give me his visual interpretation of each line and he did an amazing job!

Who are some of your favorite authors?
Chuck Klosterman, Dave Barry, and Paul Beatty are some of my favorite authors. I tend to gravitate to humorist and satirists.

What do you think readers will take away from this book?
I think one of the biggest takeaways should be just how much music, particularly hip hop music, influences our behaviors. I also wanted the readers to have a renewed appreciation for the artists that came before and their contributions to our lives. More than likely though, they will think the illustrations are dope and that’s cool too because, hey, the illustrations are dope!

it was a good day smaller

So where can the book be purchased?
The Ebook is available for $9.99 on You can also pre order the hardcover for $19.99. I suggest you get both.

Why should I buy both?
Didn’t you hear me say I’m trying to move some units, son? You should buy both and a tee shirt.

I’ll see what I can do. So what’s next for you?
I’m gonna make some dinner?

I meant what’s next for you career-wise, you nimrod.
Wait a minute? Ain’t you me? How do you not know what’s next for me? I’m promoting the book. I’m producing tracks. I’m making it do what it do, baby! Don’t be asking me no stupid questions! As a matter of fact, this interview is over!  And where’s the rest of the raw meat you promised?

If you have gotten this far, then you’ve clearly thrown away any expectation of an unbiased opinion about You Made it a Hot Line. In my biased opinion, the author may or may not have any children but he certainly has an ability to relive some of hip hop’s most memorable moments through some of the genre’s most revered lines. Whether you agree or disagree with the lines selected is almost a non sequitur at this point relating to anything written about hip hop music, particularly lists. Whatever your preference, you will certainly enjoy the writing style and amazing illustrations by award winning artist Shah Wonders.

You Made It a Hot Line may be one of the few books that takes a look at the most influential genre of our time from a not so serious but also enlightening perspective. I highly recommended you buy 7 copies and give them to all to your hip hop impaired friends.

Sidebar; I wrote a A book and it’s damn good so go support the cause!! Sidebar complete!




Rest Easy Eric Curran a.k.a M.C Krispy E



Almost every year for the past 6 years and on the same day, I’ve posted the same pic of me in the hospital  during my temporary and untimely demise  in 2015. A few weeks after I was back to “normal”, I asked Eric “Why’d you take the pics?” And he said, “I knew you would want to write about it if you lived.” Eric was right. Eric was often right and Eric always had my best interest at heart. I am going to miss my friend.

You ever meet someone and become friends immediately?! Well this was not the case with Eric. Before he was my manager at Morgan Stanley, I would often see this 6’4″, giant white guy walk up to the only black woman at work, say something then walk away without any hint of human emotion. Naturally I thought he was a jerk until I asked her “Yo, is that dude bothering you?” She laughed and proceeded to tell me he was a great person, which I ultimately got to experience first hand. Little did I know this Italian from Staten Island was more Brooklyn than most Brooklynites.

Eric was not with the shits!! If there were ever someone who lived their life in direct, honest and no uncertain terms, that would be Eric. He would ask me questions at work like “Why are the other consultants making more money than you?” I knew the answer to that question and so did he. Eric then proceeded to increase my salary by 15K. After arguing with all our managers that “You need to hire Alfred!”, they eventually did 1 year prior to the 2015 incident. In the hospital, one of my friends asked me, “What if you didn’t have health insurance when this happened?” I would be in debt for the rest of my life is the obvious answer. I still am in debt for the rest of my life but at least, it is to those who made sure I had a more enjoyable life and for that, I will gladly repay.

My mom loved to tell me the story of how she met Eric. After they told her I was going to be in the ICU for some time, she told the doctor “Well I’m not going anywhere.” She then hears a voice from that back of the room that says “Well I’m not going anywhere either!” That was Eric and in true form, he was at that hospital every single day until I was discharged.

Eric passed away in December 2021 of stage 4 cancer. After feeling faint on his way to my bbq, he went to get checked out and was diagnosed. During the past 5 years, Eric lost his mom, twin brother and dad. I can’t even begin to imagine what that must have felt like but I’m glad that pain he was feeling is no more.

It’s been a bit difficult to deal with it to be quite honest and I’ve been writing this in my head for years but never had the bravery or grace to accept that my friend wouldn’t be here soon. I also can’t imagine what it must be like to lose your entire family nucleus unexpectedly. In true Eric fashion however, I would like this to not be about me but whomever has lost someone and has been coping. I’ve always intimated that my life would not be as enriched as it was were it not for the people in it. The problem with that is there is also no way to deny that it feels empty without those who helped craft your path. Rather than focus on the negative, I would rather focus on the examples of duty, family and emotional intelligence. All concepts reinforced by Eric that have led me to have successful relationships since I’ve put them into practice.

From being my manager to my business partner, writer, book editor, artistic director, and most importantly, my friend, I am going to miss you MC Krispy E a.k.a “Enrique Pollazo!” And although you told me Enrique means Henry in Spanish and not Eric, it was too late!

Sidebar. The day I was discharged, while everyone was deciding what was best for me, no one had remembered that I would need clothes in order to leave the hospital. Eric shows up (unasked) with all the clothes I had on the day I coded, laundered and ready to go. I don’t know what I’ve done to deserve friends like this but i need to keep doing it! Sidebar complete.

Rest in Peace Eric. “Be Good.”

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Writing Your First Book / Should I Self Publish?




I had the distinct pleasure of  participating in a panel discussion on writing your first book, presented by the Harlem chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.  Alongside Jim St. Germain, Author – A Stone of Hope: A Memoir and Dr. Keneshia Nicole Grant, Author – The Great Migration and the Democratic Party: Black Voters and the Realignment of American Politics in the 20th Century.  We opined on pain points, benefits and strategies regarding our inaugural voyages into authorship. Feel free to watch for your self and I hope this provides some insight to all those looking to make the same voyage. Enjoy!

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What the NFT is a BEEPLE?



On March 11 this year, the digital artist Beeple sold a collage of digital images from his “Everydays” series for nearly 70 million dollars as an NFT, or non-fungible token. And if that sentence confuses you, you’re not alone.

A non-fungible token is a unit of data on a digital ledger called a blockchain, where each NFT can represent a unique digital item, and thus they are not interchangeable. NFTs can represent digital files such as art, audio, video, and other forms of creative work. While the digital files themselves are infinitely reproducible, the NFTs representing them are tracked on their underlying blockchains and provide buyers with proof of ownership.” – Wikipedia

Still confused? Let the artist himself explain it, and learn how he went from NFT newbie to making the third most expensive artwork by a living artist in three months. Not to suggest Beeple is an overnight success. The “Everydays” series alone involved creating a piece of art every day since May 1, 2007 – and he hasn’t missed a day.

Check out some of Beeple’s amazing and controversial work below.

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