ICONography

by Tim'm

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    Please check out Tim'm's 5 other solo projects if you like this one: Songs From Red Dirt (2003), Blakkboy Blue(s) (2007), In Security: The Golden Error (2009), Fly Brotha (2011), and Snapshots (2013). All are available at bandcamp.

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1.
03:49
2.
3.
02:38
4.
5.
04:45
6.
7.
04:12
8.
9.
05:47
10.
02:46

about

Tim'm T. West has been known since his days with queer hip-hop pioneers, Deep Dickollective, for his unapologetic affinity for not only Golden Era Hip Hop, but also the broad mix of sub-genres and styles that have long defined him as an artist. A published poet, celebrated Spoken Word artist, and vocalist whose stylings have been compared to Will Downing, Omar, Joe Williams, and Nate Dog, Tim'm is defined by his aversion to narrow definition. A celebration and Iconic Renaissance man who is as well known for his interventions in scholarship and educational advocacy, ICONography celebrates the humbling journey to iconic status, from his birthplace of Cincinnati to Arkansas and the cities he ventured to through college and beyond. Recorded mostly at 6090 Studio in Atlanta and principally engineered by Mauryce MoTrakx Owens, Tim'm returns to the sound that defined his debut "Songs From Red Dirt". He sings, emcees, offers strong Spoken Word performances and lush harmonies with featured vocalists like Ceedro and Damian Nova. We are fortunate if this is not the last we hear from Tim'm, but the beginning of a new brave era marking his creative genius and longevity.

credits

released October 6, 2015

Tracks 1,3 produced by DirtyBird (McKinleyville, CA) | Tracks 2, 5, 6, 9, and 10 produced by Rob Rhythm (Plainfield, NJ) | Track 4 produced by JStaffz (Toronto) | Tracks 7, 8 produced by Watkinz (Philadelphia) | All songs recorded at 6090 Studios with the exception of 5 & 10 which were recorded at Watkinz Studios in Philadelphia.

Special thanks to co-executive producers Ceedro Drummond (Atlanta), Mauryce Motrakx Owens of Lost Art Productions LLC (Atlanta), and Watkinz (Philadelphia); as well as Freelife Media Group, LLC.. Front and back cover design by Ceedro Drummond. Photo by Cleo House, Jr.

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Track Name: ICONography
Iconography
produced by dirtybirdbeats

Hook:

I'm a grown man growing up
My trajectory
I'm a little bit city and a big country boy
that's who I be
I'm a blues, a jazz, a Hip-hop a rhythm
don't ya wanna dance with me
the most fa mous em cee you never heard of
ICONography

Verse 1:

Born in the Nati, over the Rhine
rebirth in a city where the river runs dry
yet full of water for tears of the broken
underground railroading
freedom song getting us open
Class politics and Midwest corruption
race rioting, buildings smokin, folk chokin
1836, '67, 2011
folk actin' like we in a post-racial heaven
that's a 175 years we still clash
yet black folk still get shot
you do the math
in the Cincinnati
The nasty nati
the nastiest thing is bigotry not being catty
first memories were of living on Race street
where you could eat a bullet
before gettin Grippos to eat
it's not Calculus,
the racial angst of the city where I was born
who would have guessed: ICON
(who would have guessed: ICON)

Hook 2

I'm a grown man growing up
My trajectory
I'm a little bit city and a big country boy
that's who I be
I'm a blues, a jazz, a Hip-hop a rhythm
don't ya wanna dance with me
the most fa mous em cee you never heard of
ICONography
(ICONography)

Verse 2:

Then South Dallas OakCliff
Neglect in a hot city not feeling too hot: Texas
childhood abuses: homeless hungry
momma walkin' streets with 4 kids, no money
eventually we found a spot
over the state line, Pig Sooey, life in the Rock
That's Little Rock the biggest city in the ARK
5 with mandatory football cleats in Fair Park
but it really wasn't fair cuz I was really rather bookish
wasn't a good look for a dad
with a straight plan
to make sure none of his boys would be sissies
especially me, all smart, proper, siditty
just like my ma and if she was into men
then I'd ask, "can I kick it" yes you can
with a boy or girl, so I learned to box
a black queer, Highland Court, Little Rock

Hook 3

grown man growing up
My trajectory
I’m a little bit city and a big country boy
that's who I be
I’m a blues, a jazz, a Hip-hop a rhythm
don't ya wanna dance with me
the most fa mous em cee you never heard of
Iconography

Verse 3:

to a small town where there less stress and killin
and god willing, gang violence and blood spillin
Be more protected in a red dirt bubble of 870
Taylor, Arkansas real slow
a town barely on the map, fewer gun claps
other side of the track town, white over black
lots of church where I'd question my worth
ask God: why I'd be cursed at birth
for burdens I would carry
fast, pray, and tarry
do everything to rid the feeling,
that had me demeaning the joy I felt dreamin’
when I crushed on guys
ideations of suicide
but I listened to a voice one front porch night
said you aiight, in spite of inner fights
and one day you'll find others who feel the same
Icon, people gonna know ya name

Hook to fade (music fade... acapella)
Track Name: Gospel (feat. Damien Nova)
Gospel (feat. Damien Nova)
Produced by Rob Rhythm

Tim’m:

Sometimes
When I’m down
I find myself a DJ spinnin’ downtown
My church and congregation
A place of joy

The love
Of the people
No matter our differences we are equal
As one
To the rhythm
A gospel groove

Hook

A joyful noise a song of praise
Never afraid I’m so amazed
Spiritual we lift our voice
My dance is gospel

Damien Nova:

You can’t fight it
You can try to hide but you can’t deny it
The gods of the dancefloor
Are calling you

The sweet communion
Sweating winding intoxicating this union
With you in rhythm
A sacred groove

Hook

These days
The closest I get to God
is on the dance floor.
My spirit led to dance
or weep
or celebrate this energy
greater than what I can myself muster,
some source of strength
that exceeds even
my own understanding:
it is rhythmic,
it is redemptive,
it is loving,
it is the nature and essence of God
it is gospel

Damien Nova:

Gonna use this gospel X3
To free my soul

Ablib to fade
Track Name: Song
song
produced by DirtyBird

Lay down with me
Tell me what your heartbeat can see
Unafraid
Can you feel the song it plays
a song for all your days
a song when seasons fade
I am here
And there's a song for you
always

sometime you get to doubting
if my heart's re-routing
it's hot bloody mess
I must confess
been through a few things
not as naive as it used to be
cynical, stubborn to memory
what happened
why am I not butterflies
unicorns and rainbows
heaven only knows
even Janet said that's the way love goes
as it grow
so Imma compose my own ode
know I got bruises and scars
they beautiful tattoos to you
so a brotha gonna stay true
accept me where I am
we make our own rules
and got our own plan
help me soar above the quicksand
catch me when I land
so take my hand
so take my hand
so glad that you're my man

Dance with me tonight
ain't nobody here but moonlight
Let's sway
To the song we know she plays
a song for all your days
a song when seasons fade
I am here
And there's a song for you
always
Track Name: When (feat. Ceedro)
When (feat. Ceedro Drummond)
Produced by JStaffz

LYRICS (Hook):

I don't understand the plan
But God willing
Hope to see the day
We end this blood-spilling, oh
(When will we learn?)
(When will we learn?)

Even though there's just no telling
When the end could be
Everything in darkness
Comes to light eventually
(When will we learn?)
(When will we learn?)

(Ceedro Verse):

First off, moment of silence
For the unlucky ones
Who had to leave this world
Way before enough was done
Luckily for us
We can rest in our comfort zones
Pretending like, things are nice
And nothing's ever wrong

But kids are killing kids
Where's the innocence?
Crimes are glorified
And posted on the Internet
They get millions of hits
Don't say you haven't clicked
But we avoid the fact
That we could stop the statistics, so

F*** a disorder
This a real attention deficit
F*** the reporters
That never mention the incidents
Look, this is the order
That leads to gross negligence
So do what you oughta
To beat the ignorance

Call attention, sign petitions
Picket signs and brick the trenches
Slow offense, but quick defenses
We're the problem; lets prevent it
But most of us ain't stopping s***
So it's over: Apocalypse.

Hook:

I don't understand the plan
But God willing
Hope to see the day
We end this blood-spilling, oh
(When will we learn?)
(When will we learn?)

Even though there's just no telling
When the end could be
Everything in darkness
Comes to light eventually
(When will we learn?)
(When will we learn?)

(Tim'm verse)

Only a figure of speech when I say I'm killin it
conscious verbal warfare so cats be feeling it
like 8th lives
my lyrical combat's
a metaphorical ride or die
I'm pediatric, "baby get your life"
cuz I don't want nothing for my people but prosperity
we beat, shoot, and kill
each other with regualrity
forgetting we brothas and sisters
grindin for some parity
in a world that quite comfortable
with black people disparities… huh?
the truth hurts
but when we envision death certificates at birth
it's time we get tired of being first
in every statistical category where we hurt
you wanna get free? lemme give you a free verse
Why can't we stand for something, when we falling for what's worse
settling for hell on earth instead of spiritual rebirth
So if blacklivematters to you, show your worth
blacklove should matter to you too, so get to work

Hook to fade
Track Name: Crush
crush
produced by Rob Rhythm

Spoken:

there is a sweet pain
a love that dare not
speak it's name
a song without refrain
it's called a crush
a recipe of intrigue and lust
and if you must reveal it
after patience and concealment
then you just might kill it

but keepin’ it in
especially if for a friend
can prolong the longing
the belonging
so sometimes
it's best to take the risk
reveal the heart's wish
engage this soul kiss
from a distance
in an instant

Verse 1:

I got a crush on you
not sure you know it
I try not to show it
but when I'm feelin’ blue
the sight of you just makes me smile

and you
seem oblivious
to my like and lust
though at times I think
it shows
I wonder if you know

Verse 2:

I got a crush on you
I'm not sure you know it
try not to show it
our wordless wonderment
the silence speaks a thousand words

and you
sometimes look my way
say hello or hey
but no more, than this most times
though I see more in my mind

Spoken:

not sure I believe in
love at first sight
but these eyes can spot a crush
are quick to lust
if never rush
the sweetest pain of knowing
the other may never know
the feelings grow
know if you cross the line
the crush may surely die
what makes it butterfly
what makes the nature rise
is the almost but not quite
the maybe I just might
but never do
defines the essence of you
and me
parallel symphonies
on different stages
and ain't it amazing
that we know we alive
in the dance of eyes
no guilt, shame, or lies
the purity of you and i
sweet anticipation
wondering and waiting
if we will ever become
the two that’s one plus one

Verse 3:

this crush on you
I’m not sure you know it
I try not to show it
sometimes I think I slip
and my eyes tell my secrets

I see you
so oblivious
to my like and lust
though at times I think
you feel it too
maybe I'm the same to you

Verse 4:

You've got a crush on me
I never knew it
I feel kinda foolish
now that our secret's mutual
should we stay this way, or try to grow

But we
enjoy the purity
of the fantasy
and what if we try and don't succeed
then our hearts will surely bleed

Spoken:

how you know sometime
is God tell you
you can smell it
taste like home
visceral
like soul kitchen to hunger
prayer to need
lullaby or cuddle to insomnia
you know
'cause everything in the world
all right
when they look at you
if just for seconds
and you can't stop
blushin'.
Track Name: Weather (feat. Ceedro)
Weather (feat. Ceedro)
(west/hogan/brown)

Verse 1

Tim'm:

I like the sun
reminds me of
your warm embrace
your sunny smile
when I'm with you

Ceedro:

I like the rain
don't mind it wet
we have to stay
inside all night
just me and you

Chorus:

(weather or not)
it's rainy or sunny
(weather or not)
the clouds go my way
(weather or not)
I'm happy to be with you baby
cuz you make my day

repeat

Verse 2:

Tim'm:

and like the sun
the heat of passion
burns inside
an eternal flame
cuz I'm with you

Ceedro:

and like the rain
I watch the drops
of sweat from your
body to mine
only with you

Chorus

Vamp/Adlib:

you shake me like an earthquake
you spin me like a twister
gotta prepare for your love like a hurricane
(your love blows me away)

you lift me like a sandstorm
make me tremble like when thunder roams
but with your arms around me safe and warm
let the sun shine, or the rain come

Chorus to fade...
Track Name: Between
between
produced by Watkinz

completely comfortable
in my skin
too bad the world wants to
box me in
makes it so hard to find
peace within
cuz I'm up and I'm down and I'm OUT
and I'm in between
I'm in between
I'm in between
between the in
cuz I'm in between
I'm in between
I'm in between
between the inbetween

Verse 1:

have you ever opened ya mouth to just stutter
tongue-tied over your truth
and just mutter, words like clutter,
catching up with the uppercut
and boxing to break out the box
like ya just got dropped
cuz ya life is a maze
and you amazed that the days
got you in a daze
way bigger than a phase
bigger than your fear but you still afraid
song in the throat but you a bird in a cage
and just like Angelou you wanna sing, wail
but you fail and it ain't hard to tell
never had a poker face
wrinkle cuz you frustrate
breath accelerates, heart skips a pace
and you tire and you retire from the rat race
in that state of mind called mine
so you stay in your head cuz you do just fine
fine fine fine Woooo
and you search for a home, cuz it's more than a place
a dream in that pillow where you feel most safe
that joy out of reach you can almost taste
doubt creeps in wait wait
then you realize the wait is a waste of faith
look for dreams but it can't be chased
and it's... written all over your face
God please give me grace
still in-between

HOOK

Verse 2:

I'm neither here nor there
ambivalence projects the point: right thurr
teeter tatter somewhere
know what I mean?
see-sawing
somewhere in-between
and the buck stops there
but there is no there there
except everywhere where it's not
and who cares
too proud to stop
too much a man to shed tears
too elusive thus unclear
but there is a place where you understood
echo boomerang in the woods
returns like you sent it, baby it's all good
and you can really trust it
poetic justice
used to be unsure of everything
before I realized i was a king
before I realzed I was a queen
before i embraced I was in-between
liminality
is my reality
they make criminality
of my humanity
it's all insanity
until I learned to be
the best rejection of my own second guessin
so believe in yourself when too few do
when you feel there nobody else but you
but you know deep down that it just ain't true
cuz you too fly, on fleek, YOU
give a dog faced side-eye Scooby-Doo
cuz the haterz got you all confused
and you win sometimes when you think you lose
and you ain't got a thing a prove
even in-between

Hook to fade
Track Name: Human (feat. Ceedro)
Human
produced by Watkinz

I'm no different than you
(only human)
just treated different than you
(as a human)
you see me
but don't respect me
why you gotta test me
I'm human

Bridge

Tim'm:

This is how a brotha feel
might not be pretty but it's damn sure real
I rep the rhetoric
inspire the derelict
HUMAN, spit therefore I am

Ceedro:

This is how a brotha feel
might not be pretty but it's damn sure real
I rep the rhetoric
inspire the derelict
HUMAN, spit therefore I am

Tim'm verse:

I represent a nation of blues and blacks
and browns and reds and yellows
and fellows that like fellows
and ladies and babies
that grow up with crazy inequity
so normalized
people think that's the way it's gotta be
but it ain't
and I can't with with y'all today
demeaning my meaning because I'm human but I'm gay
fact: you homosapien
though you don't swing that way
fact: your blood is red like mine
and pounds is how you weigh
but you won't fist pound a person that's got AIDS
you need to read a book
with yo ignorant display
you really need a hug
don't want my hug me
then good luck.
i don't give a wha what a what what
may try to keep me down
but I get up
cuz I always call ya bluff, you ain't tough
the existential nature that makes you a guess what?
superior, hell naw, just a little touched
you like to live a life that's pure and plush
while criminal justice is for just us
though scientifically
you no more a human than the
nigga you see
and that's me

Hook

Ceedro verse:
I don’t like the way that you talk to me
To be honest
I just want a conversation
Free of racial comments, I mean
Every time we speak
Does it really have to be
About what religion we seek
Or someone’s sexuality, look bruh
This world is not petite
It’s much bigger than you or me
And I just really feel the need
To spit equality on this beat
Not a soapbox or a preach
Just the common decency
To make sure everyone you meet
Gets the same chance to compete
You should know that this is right
You should know this should be life
You should know that folks are more than
Gay or straight, and black or white
Stop bickering and attacking
Or like Icarus with his wax wings
Get too high on your own shine
And go down like a bird on his last wing

Hook to fade
Track Name: Remember
remember
produced by Rob Rhythm

Spoken intro:
[we remember
we remember you
we remember
we remember you]

V1:

We don't remember everyone there
but remember you
something about your movement
sparked a movement
a parallel chain of motion inciting commotion
of those parts like hearts
wanting to stay stuck
stay untouched
your movement freed others
not brother by birth, if another mother
bound by symmetry of sweat
cemented by baby powder's freedom
its flow on feet that float
slide, glide, showboat
and whatever is not moving is moved
on these floors
eyes dance, hands fly
feet sing
here DJs are transformed into kings and queens
dancers into healers,
who communicate through movement
the next breaths we inhale our music

Hook:

(remember)
Music takes me there
(we remember)
Memories of Love
(remember)
I just close my eyes
(there is you)
reminiscent of

V2:

we remember how we all
kin by circumstance and driven by dance
yes, we remember you
head throwed back and eyes closed
guided not by sight if by sorrow
no worries: not yesterday or tomorrow
a smile that stretched til we believed it
more real than any pain before
so like you we wanted more
wanted to know the what when and how
how dance sublimates the circumstance of now
not remembering how we learned rhythm
but owning the way it took over
feet that sweep and shuffle
release the tension of muscle
make it okay to release
tears sweat, live die repeat
til we get the rite right
are reborn into night
love ourselves in spite
of this or that
make a ritual of soul claps and fist dap
glad we planned pre-midnight disco naps
lured our friends to soul or sugar shacks
do it no matter where we land on the map

Hook:

(remember)
Music takes me there
(we remember)
Memories of Love
(remember)
I just close my eyes
(there is you)
reminiscent of

V3:

Ah…
we remember your second wind
how you and the crew showed up
lined up for a weekly healing ritual
remember that it was spiritual
remember late nights
and early mornings
when any mourning we felt
was eclipsed by moonlit glow
of a disco ball
Remember dark halls
lit by bumpin basslines
that drew body parts out of their
slumber with stevie wonder
drum circles for busy hands
that pray on beat
tambourine shakes that make
of secular space a place
remember you danced
as recovery from the rat race

Hook:

(remember)
Music takes me there
(we remember)
Memories of Love
(remember)
I just close my eyes
(there is you)
reminiscent of

V4:

we remember those we used to sway with
now gone
angels whose bodies we tangled and tango
til angles smooth out
we remember
b-boy and b-girl circles without bravado
dancing with another or others or solo
remember lots of hugs
capoeira love
nameless figures we knew without needing to know
so when it became time for them to go
honored by the universe to give an Ailey solo
we dance for you
who danced until you disappeared
last dance a celebration
a way you made peace with this side
and… by and bi... when the morning come
praised your way into heaven's arms
celebrated rainbow amid the storm
we remember you
we remember you

Final Hook (to fade)
Track Name: Home
home
produced by Rob Rhythm

Verse 1

I come from a place next to nowhere
Got to get back there, to get anywhere
This place I come from, two steps from memory lane
I found my joy, let go of my pain

[Hook]

Oh the places we come from
Things that we go through
Only to get to what brings us back home
x2

Where I come from, I keep my head held high
Some say we low life, but our eyes are to the sky
Every thing I am, and ever will be
Red Dirt Country Roads [Hay Bales] and Collard Greens

[Hook]
x2

Spoken:

rusty, crooked
ashy elbows and
chapped lips
carry legacy;
sop stories up
'bout belonging and not . . .

I've inherited
the lips of secrets
not told to me
whisperin' to me
in winds
between woods
and houses they build:

"remember where you came from
. . . remember the red in your melanin
like your feet remember
the texture
of this here red clay"

so I do . . .
writing
is remembering...
HOME

Outro:

(Home)
It's a place where I can find myself
(Home)
I can place my troubles the shelf I'm
(Home)
I'm home again
I keep finding my way back
to where it all began

(Red Dirt Country roads, Hay Bails, and Collard Greens)