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Why I Can’t Listen To Charles Hamilton

Imagine that you are sitting in one of those comfortable but not too comfortable barbershop chairs, getting your hair cut, buzzed, or whatever. Everything is good. You are with friends, laughing it up, having a good time, and enjoying the underrated scent of the shiny blue barbicide seeping through the unsecured glass container. Then in walks Charles Hamilton.

A disheveled, frumpy, pink-wearing Charles Hamilton. But with rhymes. Pre-written raps, ready to go. As you probably know, this happened recently to legendary freestyle battle rapper Serius Jones. (Yea, I said it, he’s legendary at this point).

In what will probably go down as one of hip-hop’s freestyle battle etherings, Jones murdered the Sonic The Hedgehog lover. Murdered. In cold blood. What made the ethering so brutal was that Serius had no idea it was going to go down, meaning he was unprepared. Hamilton probably got word that Jones was in the neighborhood, scribbled down some lyrics, and went in with the intention of serving dude. The thing is, the opposite happened.


Well, Hamilton is an intelligent guy. But apparently he never learned the “appearance is everything” tidbit from his PR people during his days at Interscope. He walked in with sleeves falling off his hands, a pink Hello Kitty hat, an oversize jacket, and an “I just woke up, holy shit, I am now walking into a furnace and I can’t save myself and I really regret this” look on his face. He was a walking punchline. Serius had almost too much material to choose from. The fact that Serius was laughing too hard to freestyle a full verse only made it worse for Hamilton. Another L for the Brooklyn Girls lover.

This latest failing of Hamilton is funny, sure, but also pathetic. I remember when Hamilton was on the cover of XXL, with a bright future in hip-hop. Yes, he was different and a bit strange, but that made him interesting. But then things started happening. It’s still all a blur, and I am not sure the exact order, but some combination of getting dropped by Interscope, giving executive producer credit to the late J Dilla on his debut album, a bizzare Stan-like letter to Eminem, enlisting a wheelchair to get around, getting institutionalized, and getting punched by a female in the face all made his name into a punchline.

I’ve thought about this guy’s situation a few times, and I’ve wondered if the hate/clowning is fair.

First off, it most definitely is fair.

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