At some point, we all need some kind of motivation. When you aren’t getting it from your family, your friends, or society, you have to get it yourself. Self-motivation is a major tool for success. When I’m in such a mindset, there are certain songs and albums I turn to for my motivational soundtrack.
Kanye West, Graduation
This is my default go-to album when I need to get my mind right. If I could sum it up in a sentence, this record is a reflection on hustling your way to the top of your game while keeping a sane head. Wondering if you’re going to fulfill your dreams. And who can’t relate to the sentiment, “Wait till I get my money right….you can’t tell me nothing! Ha ha!” I’m broke today, but just wait until I get my money right!
Snoop, “Ups and Downs”
I relate to Snoop mostly because we’re both from the LBC, but mainly because he keeps it way real. I usually pop this track in when things are really screwed up, and I feel that there’s nowhere to go but up. Snoop sums it up perfectly in the outro:
“I think back to the words my grandaddy used to say. I never seen him in church, but he always had the word. Sometimes he would tell me, you gotta take the good with the bad. You got to do bad in order to do good.”
That’s real spit.
Tweet, “Smoking Cigarettes”
I know Tweet is R&B, but R&B is the female counterpart to hip hop (not including female emcees, obviously). It’s where women dominate. The musical composition to this song is fantastic. Bass and guitar strings rule here. Tweet’s voice is a perfect complement, with its smoky and raspy undertones. Many women can relate to this song. Shoot, sometimes when I’m bugging out I feel like smoking a cigarette, and I don’t even smoke.
Tribe Called Quest ft. Faith Evans, “Stressed Out”
The title says it all. Faith says it all in the chorus. ‘Nuff said.
Ghostface, “Cher Chez La Ghost”
This song is so much fun, and it makes me sing along and dance every time I hear it. Dancing releases bad energy and increases endorphins, and brings you to a happier place. I strongly recommend it.
Feel free to adopt my motivational music, or share some of your own in the comment section.
Peace and love.