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Q-Tip Quotes

Kamaal Ibn John Fareed

Q-Tip quotes: spiritual stuff from The Abstract.

“It’s time to invent the future, ’cause there ain’t nobody else who can make it happen, right? So make it happen for yourself.”

“You never know: rain, sleet, hail, snow. See you gotta accept that’s how things go. Prepare for the rainy day, or the sun’s glow, but there’s clouds movin’ in and the clouds gonna blow.”

“One step at a time.”

“Breathe and stop, for real and give it what you got. Give it what you got, give it what you got.”

“I think the key is to just remain open and always try to let things that’s good affect you, you know what I’m saying? So I just try to be open… be open-minded.”

“It’s important to have things that bring you back and ground you.”

“I think you have to always look ahead, in anything. We sometimes become creatures of habit, and we want to continue to do things that we maybe have enjoyed or that strike a particular chord that we’ve experienced a long, long time ago. But as time moves on and humanity moves on and man moves on and art moves on and philosophy moves on and so on and so forth, you find yourself either faced with a choice of adjusting and moving on with it or staying put.”

“Now, there’s also some good things about what you may have experienced in the past or whatever, and therein lies the challenge. Of: ‘Man, how do I keep to my ethos and keep to my philosophy but adjust it and update it and still have a fresh kind of attitude about it?’ And that’s tricky. To be able to do that, again, you have to just be egoless to a degree and you have to allow yourself to be challenged and allow yourself to be uncomfortable. And turn off your brain in a way and just trust instinct. And then fall into that, and I think you may end up on a good side.”

“Hope means not shrinking from a fight; it’s the courage to reach for something.”

“In theory, people would pick progression every time over being idle. But if you look at us as a culture, as a people, you would say that if you get up at five o’clock in the morning, eat your breakfast, go to work, make money, pay your bills, you’re progressing—when you’re still doing what’s comfortable.”

“One thing the music industry has taught me is to manage my expectations.”

“I do try to speak of positive things. I still try to, like, present two sides of the story, and I do try to relate to life in 360 degrees and not be one-dimensional. But by all means, manage expectations.”

“The fans, they play a big part in what we do. But they become fans, and they become admirers. People become admirers because of your taste meter or because of what you put out. So if they truly are that, then they’ll ride with you on your journey. And you may come back to where you started. So I’m not really that torn. I just really try to approach it from a very pure, artistic place. And I’ve really, honestly, like my little thing, I guess, as to why I’ve been around for a minute, is that I really try to act like a medium, like the work just speaks through me, like I really try to keep it on a spiritual level.”

“I’m going to step it up a little more. I don’t have much time left on this planet, you know what I’m saying? It’s not promised, so, I’m striving to keep it a little bit more frequent.”

“I don’t really write, I just kind of go in and just say it, and words just start coming. I really, really, really try to not think too much about it and just flow. And that just all came out, man.”

“I see my role as an artist as: to stay inspired, personally. Address all of the things that interest me, personally. Speak about it honestly and truthfully. And if there’s anything that I don’t know that I’m interested in, ask questions, artistically and creatively and truthfully. I’m a man.”

“I’m a human being, and I’m a man, and, you know, all the other things—artist, son—those things tend to fall further down the list. And I just try to walk that course with my complications. I try to walk with my strides and revelations as well. And I just have to be as vulnerable to life, vulnerable to understand. Every artist, I don’t care who they are, they could be the most nefarious, lean-drinking, gun-toting, drug-selling felon, whoever—everybody as an artist who has had some form of success has to be vulnerable. And that doesn’t stop. I just continue to do that. That’s my role.”

“We don’t have these, like, heavy duty jobs on face value. But as you look deeper, we deal with the esoteric. We deal with the unseen. We deal with emotion. And we deal with the feeling. Those things are what drive humanity.”

“So if I come across something, which I definitely do—which is racism or sexism or homophobia or chauvinism or classism or an elitist—then you just have to blow the whistle. Even if it’s upon myself. Even if I fall guilty. You have to be willing to examine it. It sounds sexy, but it’s like the old adage that making sausages is an ugly process to witness, but when you eat it, it’s great. You’ve kind of got to go through the mud as an artist. I’m no different. I’m not exclusive from that.”

“Push each other. I celebrate it. And we all come from something. I didn’t just pop up. I come from a whole host of different combinations. It’s just acknowledging. Because again, I just detest when old people make these complaints about sh*t but don’t offer any solutions. Or don’t have anything that they see—like I see a lot of myself in a lot of what’s happened. And I see a lot of myself in what happened yesterday, too.”

“The thing that men and women need to do is stick together. Progressions can’t be made if we’re separate forever.”

“It’s not just a struggle for blacks to be accepted by whites, but the other way around as well. A lot of people don’t see that.”

“We all have our own takes on things. To being yourself. The abstract, the whole thing that I play with, seems to result in seeing through your lenses, and once you express how you see things to others, you start to see there are similarities between all people. It’s kind of like, no matter how far you go, you’re still where you started, in a way.”

“Know the feelin’, when you feelin’ like a villain. You be havin’ good thoughts but the evils be revealin’. And the stresses of life can take you off the right path, jealousy and envy tends to infiltrate your staff. We gotta hold it down so we can move on past all adversities, so we can get through fast.”

“I grew up on the rough side of the tracks. If you looked like you were soft, you would be fodder for the wolves. I came up in my neighborhood like, ‘I’m just gonna be me,’ and all the thugs just said, ‘It’s okay, he’s special.’ They knew I had the talent with the rhymes, so they kept me around.”

“I was lucky that I had my father there and honored his values. It makes a difference in your life, too. For me, though, it’s wild because my father would be teachin’ me stuff without tellin’ me.”

“I am recognizing that the voice inside my head is urging me to be myself, but never follow someone else.”

“How far must you go to gain respect? Um, well, it’s kind of simple: just remain your own. Or you’ll be crazy sad and alone.”

“Am I the last person to think that there’s nothing wrong with kind of having a private life and holding to secrets? Does everything have to be available, like the reality TV sh*t? Am I one of the last people to really believe that having some sort of talent at something really can get you currency in this world, or do you have to kind of be a buffoon or some sort of vixen to make it? Like, just holding to those kind of principles and questioning them. Not saying that they’re right or wrong, but just posing that question.”

“We got to mediate our greedy levels, ’cause the lust of currency can have us sleepin’ with the devil.”

“All we want in this life is peace, prosperity and a little paper.”

Related: Jay-Z quotes.

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