The “World’s Worst Rapper” Gets a Book

You gotta feel back for Juiceboxxx. Here’s why. This is from the Guardian.

The problem with being barely known – barely known for years, not as a beginner – is that you have no control over how and when you come to get noticed. That’s something Juiceboxxx has experienced twice. Last year, he briefly became an internet meme when, after a disastrous appearance on a local news station in his hometown of Milwaukee, he was called “the worst rapper ever”. This year, the attention has been more positive – though still discomfiting – as 28-year-old Juiceboxxx has found himself, well over a decade into a career that began when he was 15, the subject of a book that’s had Lena Dunham raving.

The Next Next Level, by Leon Neyfakh, isn’t a biography of Juiceboxxx. It’s a meditation on the relationship between art and struggle, whether one is worth the other, and between artist and audience (Neyfakh has been a fan of Juiceboxxx since helping to put on a show featuring him in a church hall in the Chicago suburb of Oak Hall, when they were teenagers). Subtitled A Story of Friendship, Rap, and Almost Giving Up, it’s a compelling read – one that considers Juiceboxxx’s talent for confronting and unsettling his audience, as well as wondering what draws both performer and his small audience back to shows that often seem to take place at a level somewhere below that of the toilet circuit.

Keep reading. Meanwhile, let’s take a listen. Frankly, I’ve heard much, MUCH worse. In fact, there may be potential here. Give the guy props for trying.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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