Author Topic: Earl Sweatshirt - It was about the money  (Read 1563 times)

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Offline Oscar

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Earl Sweatshirt - It was about the money
« on: December 26, 2012, 02:37:12 PM »
While musician, songwriter and producer Earl Sweatshirt was detained at Coral Reef Academy, his mother made arrangement for his production of music so he is now on contract with Leila Steinberg. He hit the golden egg while he was underaged and his mother wanted to cash in. So he was held on Samoa until he signed the contract. As some properly know they would have been able to detain him until age 21 due to the rather sick laws they have on this island.

Video of his release (Edited by the new management who controls him):

For info about Coral Reef Academy:
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline Reddit TroubledTeens

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Re: Earl Sweatshirt - It was about the money
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2013, 05:31:28 AM »
Great find, Oscar. This generated an interesting comment on reddit:

"I was in treatment with some kids who were in wilderness with Earl, and my wilderness therapist worked at CRA for 4 years before coming to Second Nature Blue Ridge. The first time I heard Odd Future's music was 10 months into my time away, when I was able to have a visit and see my brother, and we secretly listened to songs from their album Radicals. He was a person who I could identify with and look to when I wanted to make sense of how this could happen to people, and I still remember hearing Orange Juice for the first time and feeling something like hope. I was able to meet him a couple of months after I left treatment, and I told him that his wilderness buddies said hi, and that his music helped get me through my experience in treatment.

I don't know how he views all of this. I always heard that Samoa was a place you do not want to go, as they can keep you until you are 21 years old and have different laws regarding the treatment of children (corporal punishment etc.)"


Also found a good interview with Earl Sweatshirt in the NY Times, it was linked in the hiphopwired article but the link was broken:

After Exile, Career Reset
Earl Sweatshirt Is Back From the Wilderness
Damon Winter/The New York Times

Earl Sweatshirt in Los Angeles in April. More Photos »
Published: May 2, 2012

Slide Show
Earl Sweatshirt Returns

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Damon Winter/The New York Times

Earl Sweatshirt in Los Angeles. More Photos »

AT Coral Reef Academy, a therapeutic retreat for at-risk boys in Vaitele, outside of the Samoan capital of Apia, your progress is tracked on a map with a bus. Around the island the bus goes, until eventually it lands at the airport, at which point you’re finally free.

Get in trouble, as Thebe Kgositsile did from time to time, and you end up spending your time in a separate house — the bus barn — more or less alone, waiting to be allowed to rejoin the group. Mostly he would get into trouble for sneaking onto the Internet, trying to check in on his other life, 5,000 miles away. Before leaving his native Los Angeles he’d made a name for himself as Earl Sweatshirt, the most intense and talented rapper in Odd Future, the crew that in the last two years has helped upend hip-hop business models, remade ideas about the meaning of the rap underground and stoked the hip-hop culture wars as no act in recent memory has, thanks to its rowdy, outlandish and sometimes offensive content and its motormouth frontman Tyler, the Creator.

Much of the early Odd Future buzz centered around Earl Sweatshirt, whose video for “Earl” was a teen-rebel fantasia of drug use and other misbehavior. A provocateur with a dry wit and an outrageously dexterous gift for wordplay, he was a clear inheritor of Eminem’s macabre humor and Lil Wayne’s dyspeptic logorrhea. He was a savvy, schooled rapper: gross, entrancing and thrilling.

And also one of the only pop mysteries left. By the time Odd Future began performing and doing interviews, he was nowhere to be seen. In a time of Internet-speed information flood, Earl Sweatshirt’s absence — he was sent to Samoa by his mother — a striking rarity.

He returned to Los Angeles in February maybe more popular than he would have been if he’d never left. In his absence Odd Future had used the Internet to trump old ways of doing things. Earl Sweatshirt, by largely staying off the Internet, found himself benefiting from all that had happened and with a bully pulpit in front of him. What would he say?

IN EARLY APRIL Earl Sweatshirt was in California, spending his days finishing his final semester of high school at New Roads School, in Santa Monica, and spending the rest of the time regaining his footing.

“There’s so much in the balance,” he said one afternoon at Ohana, a Korean restaurant in Studio City. “ For me, for my mom, for Tyler, for everyone I care about.”

Mellow and thoughtful, he isn’t an introvert so much as slyly shy. The eight weeks since he’d been back had required constant calibration: spending time with his mother; easing himself into the rhythm of Odd Future, which has become a successful touring outfit; patching up his friendships with Tyler and others. Often doing one of these things meant ignoring another. Just as often they were at odds.

The relationship between Earl’s mother, Cheryl Harris, a law professor at the University of California, Los Angeles, and Odd Future, which kept Earl Sweatshirt’s name alive while he was gone, was minimal at best. His music, Ms. Harris said, was part of a larger suite of concerns that led to her decision to send him away. “He was really very clearly going through a rough patch emotionally,” she said in an interview in the Beverly Hills office of her son’s manager, adding that it was “very evident that he was struggling.” That meant smoking marijuana to excess, having a serious falling-out with the Hwa Rang Do teacher with whom he’d studied for years, and getting caught cheating on an English assignment. Instead of memorizing a Shakespeare recitation, he relied on a hidden iPod.

“I’m my mom’s everything, so there was nothing else to distract her” from his troubles, he said. (Ms. Harris and her son’s father, the South African poet and activist Keorapetse Kgositsile, split up about a decade ago.)

The “Earl” video was posted online on May 26, 2010, and within days, Earl Sweatshirt was gone. First he went to Second Nature, a several-week-long wilderness program. But when it was clear he needed further time and attention, he was sent to Samoa.

As Odd Future became more popular, though, his absence was harder to ignore. While Ms. Harris remained largely silent, “Free Earl” became a slogan, a hashtag, a mantra. Odd Future fans began to see her as an antagonist. At one point a threatening note was left on her door.

“I could have never imagined in my wildest dreams that this decision to send him away to a school that had the kind of support for his emotional well-being that he needed would turn into a story about locking him away,” she said. To explain her son’s absence, she added, “I would’ve had to have talked about his personal life in a way that I think would’ve been really unfair.”

Still, she couldn’t ignore that Earl Sweatshirt had fans, and a future in music. David Bryan, the head of New Roads, put Ms. Harris in touch with Larry Brezner, a Hollywood producer and manager whose company represents Robin Williams, Billy Crystal and other entertainment giants. Mr. Brezner brought in Leila Steinberg, an activist with Alternative Intervention Models, a youth-oriented arts program, and a longtime friend. Ms. Steinberg had another advantage: she’d managed a teenage Tupac Shakur. Together Mr. Brezner and Ms. Steinberg took on the management of Earl Sweatshirt.

In Samoa he was taking courses and speaking with therapists. He swam with whales and earned a scuba diving license, watched every episode of “The Mentalist” on DVD, put his classmates onto Lil B, began learning how to play piano. He read Manning Marable’s Malcolm X biography and Richard Fariña’s counterculture fiction. He wrote rhymes. Most of his verse on “Oldie,” his one contribution to “The OF Tape Vol. 2” (Odd Future), released in March, was written while he was in Samoa, before he knew if he’d ever have a song to put it on.

Earl Sweatshirt arrived in Samoa resentful. “That’s why I was gone for so long,” he said, discussing the stages of acceptance most of the participants in the program go through: resistance, false commitment, then finally, actual growth. “When the kids that got there at the same time as me were all leaving, it was like, damn,” he said. “There’s such a clear difference between someone who’s faking it and someone who’s like, ‘O.K., maybe I don’t hate my mom.’ ”

He’d let his friends know where he was when he got to Samoa but was only able to communicate sporadically. Eventually his mother began sending him articles about the group’s success, and also a birthday card Tyler had dropped at his house in Los Angeles. He was soon communicating with Ms. Steinberg, who gave him writing exercises and perspective on what had been happening at home.

As part of the Coral Reef curriculum he also performed community service, spending time working at Samoa Victim Support Group, a center for survivors of sexual abuse, including children.

“That was a pivotal moment,” he said one afternoon at Bristol Farms, a supermarket near his manager’s office. One of the things Earl Sweatshirt had been prized for as a rapper was his extreme imagery, bordering on vile. “You can detach imagery from words,” he said, adding that he “never actually pictured” the things he rapped about. (“Lyrics About Rape, Coke, And Couches Will Be Blaring In Your Ears,” was how “Earl,” the album, was advertised on Odd Future’s Tumblr when it was released in March 2010.)

By the time he began working at the center, “I had already come to the conclusion that I was done talking about” that sort of subject matter, he said, but coming face to face with young people who had suffered in that way was overwhelming. “There’s nothing that you can — there’s no — you can’t evade the — there’s no defense for like — if you have any ounce of humanity,” he said, the feeling swallowing the words.

Tyler too was changing. The loss of Earl, his best friend, just at the moment when their dreams were beginning to be realized was deeply painful. “Tyler always treated him as sacred,” said Christian Clancy, one of Odd Future’s managers. “They all did.” On the group’s early tours, “at every stop Tyler would stop and say something, ‘God, I wish Earl was here,’ ” recalled David Airaudi, another manager.

But there was a disconnect between Tyler and Ms. Harris. They had met on a few occasions before Earl’s departure and had spoken about his creative ambitions. “She really genuinely cared about me, and then it all shut down” he lamented. “I don’t see how she sees me as a threat.”

According to Mr. Brezner, Ms. Harris was putting the interests of her son first: “She had tremendous anger at Tyler. He represented for her the friends that were going to drag him down that rabbit hole.”

Finally Earl Sweatshirt’s bus made it to the airport. “I started taking responsibility,” he said, “in my head, not just out loud.” Ms. Steinberg traveled to Samoa with a group of musicians to pick him up and conduct workshops that Earl organized. When he left to fly back to Los Angeles, Ms. Steinberg said, the girls from the center were at the airport to bid him farewell, tears in their eyes.

Earl turned 18 a couple of weeks after he returned from Samoa, but he’s not quite an adult yet. He returned to New Roads, from which he’ll graduate in June. Odd Future greeted him with a “welcome home check,” Mr. Clancy said. Earl Sweatshirt stays with Ms. Steinberg, or crashes with Tyler, or with Matt Martians and Syd the Kyd, the Odd Future producers who share an apartment. He’s easily fallen back into the Odd Future lingo — “tight” for approval, “sus” for questionable things and so on.

“He’s matured,” said Syd. “It’s weird to say that because in my circle a friend’s maturity isn’t necessarily looked up at. But he hasn’t changed.”

When Earl returned, he and Tyler were due for some long conversations, though it was difficult to break past their usual goofy, playful rapport, which Earl jokingly refers to as “A.D.H.D. farce.”

In order to discuss difficult topics, “I had to force it to be uncomfortable,” he added.

But even though their bond had been tested, it wasn’t severed. “It’s like we both don’t know how much influence we have on the other person,” Earl Sweatshirt said. “There’s times where I realize, like, damn, I matter.”

Initially the group assumed that when Earl returned, he’d simply rejoin the crew. But with separate management, and more than a year and a half of vastly different life experience, there were no guarantees.

Tyler, for one, was vexed: “I’m going to make sure when you come back I have a house built for you. And when you come home, all you have to do is walk in, and I’m going to make sure you have everything you want.” Tyler’s fear was that Earl would return and say, “Eh, never mind, I’m going to go rent a hotel.”

Tyler said: “I want to lie to you and say, ‘Yeah he’s here.’ But I have no idea. I just don’t.”

THE MOST ANTICLIMACTIC record deal signing in the history of such events took place in the front conference room at Mr. Brezner’s firm, on a blindingly sunny day on which Earl Sweatshirt was happily high.

An hour earlier he’d been at the Odd Future store, drinking a strawberry-lime soda and making jokes with some of the extended crew members. In the car on the way to the office he took a call from Ms. Steinberg. “I’m too high for this,” he said, equal parts miffed and mischievous. “I’m about to get sad. And then you know what’s going to happen, I’m not going to be glad. I’m going to be mad. Bad.” He’d learned that Ms. Harris was going to pick him up afterward to take him to meet André 3000 (with whom he shares a legal team), and he was frustrated.

After a stop at a 7-Eleven to pick up Clear Eyes to get rid of some weed-induced redness, he went to the office, perfunctorily signed a stack of papers in several places, then left with a laugh.

He’ll have his own imprint, Tan Cressida, to be distributed through Columbia. That places him in the Sony system alongside Odd Future, which was one of his priorities. He turned down offers with significantly higher advances and made sure that his contract allowed him to put the Odd Future logo on his albums. “I want it to look seamless,” he said. As for his mother’s concerns, “She knows she’s got nothing to worry about.”

There still hasn’t been any communication between Ms. Harris and Odd Future. “I don’t view me as being the relevant person in all this,” she said, though she remains a potent behind-the-scenes force.

There are still joint therapy sessions with his mother, to hammer out the dents in that relationship. “I don’t spend as much time at home as I necessarily should be,” he admitted. “I know I’m not as considerate as I should be.” The day after he groaned about traveling with her to see André 3000, he reconsidered his angst. “That was the prejudice I was talking about,” he said. “When I got in the car with her, it was, like, fine.”

Whether he’ll branch out as a solo star or become part of the Odd Future traveling road show remains to be seen. He made his live debut at the crew’s album release concert at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York in March.

His way of coping with re-entry has been decidedly low key: whiling away hours at the Odd Future store, skating, making music with everyone in the crew. At one point he joked that he has to stop wearing the five-panel camp hats that are something of a crew trademark.

He wants to work on three projects: his solo major-label debut, a collaboration with the producer Matt Martians and EarlWolf, a long-planned collaboration with Tyler. Of “Earl,” the song that made him a star, he said, “There’s not a time I want to listen to that,” describing it as sounding “like you skinned your knee.”

“You can listen to ‘Earl’ and be like, damn, he went in, that was really smart. But there’s no avoiding. ...” he said, trailing off.

When he first arrived in Samoa, he was taken to a waterfall, which some of the other boys jumped off, though to a newcomer it inspired fear. “If you didn’t jump off the waterfall, you felt” terrible, he said. “So then you started jumping off the waterfalls.”

Doing so, he said, had given him new perspective, a desire to be more bold, and to trust in himself more.

“I just treat everything like that,” he said. “If I don’t do this right now, if I don’t take this risk, I’ll never get this day back again.”

A version of this article appeared in print on May 6, 2012, on page AR1 of the New York edition with the headline: After Exile, Career Reset.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »

Offline none-ya.

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Re: Earl Sweatshirt - It was about the money
« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2013, 02:47:35 PM »
Relax Danny, we got rid of the nazis for you LOL
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
This username is a para...pare....fake profile created strictly for the purpose of whimsey and yuk yuks

Offline Oscar

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His career is over
« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2014, 01:51:34 AM »
Both those who were present and the journalists who covered his performance on Roskilde Festival in Denmark agree on one thing. He just have no power left performing. He should focus on a job in a burger joint. I found this blog entry from a Dane who had a relative visiting the concert:

“He has lost it”

I was visiting my brother when the phone rang. It was his son – my nephew. He was at the Roskilde Festival which is some kind of music event in the eastern part of Denmark called the Devil’s Island by us from the real Denmark.

My nephew was talking about Earl Sweatshirt – his big idol.

I remember some years ago when I visited my brother that I heard the songs Earl Sweatshirt made. While I found the lyrics too modern I could understand why it appealed to the youth.

For reasons unknown to me the mother of Earl Sweatshirt wanted to derail his career so he was abducted to a wilderness program and later sent to Samoa where he was mistreated until he was released.

Since he reentered the world as a free man, he seems to have lost the drive which made him something special. My nephew was so disappointed that he almost was ready to return home before the event is over. However it is rather expensive to go this event – several thousand DKK – so my brother promised him to wire extra money so he could get drunk and perhaps enjoy some of the other music.

It makes me wonder. Why rob your child of his career? What kind of motivation could justify this? As a father it does not make sense. If it had been my son I would have let my son outlive his potential.