EVERLASTING

LYTE & DNICE &TONY

WHERE EXACTLY DO I BEGIN?! SOME THING HAS BEEN HEAVY ON MY MIND FOR QUITE SOME TIME AND I THOUGHT I’D SHARE WITH ALL OF YOU WHO GIVE GOOD “HOT DAMN”. LET ME SET THE SCENARIO SO YOU ALL CAN FOLLOW EXACTLY WHERE I’M HEADED WITH THIS ONE.

AS LONG AS I CAN REMEMBER I’VE WANTED TO ROCK THE MIC. I WANTED TO PERFORM ON STAGES AND GRAB THE EARS AND EYES OF ALL. I WANTED TO TRAVEL AND SEE PLACES UNHEARD OF. I WANTED TO AQUIRE LOTS OF PICTURES SO WHEN I FINALLY SETTLED DOWN I’D HAVE LOTS OF MEMORABILIA TO SURROUND MYSELF WITH. I DIDN’T KNOW WHAT I WAS GOING TO DO AS A PERFORMER, I JUST KNEW I WANTED IT, THE SUCCESS.

AS A KID MY MOM TOOK ME TO PLAYS. LOTS OF THEM. DRACULA, 42ND ST, DREAMGIRLS, CATS, ETC. I WAS MESMERIZED BY THE STAGE AND THE LIGHTS AND ALL THAT WAS PRESENTED. I REMEMBER THE LIMOS PULLING UP TO COLLECT PEOPLE IN FRONT OF THE THEATER AFTER THE SHOW. AND NO WE COULDN’T AFFORD THE TICKETS TO SEE BROADWAY PLAYS THAT OFTEN BUT THEN AGAIN WE NEVER EVER BOUGHT THEM. MY MOM KNEW A DOORMAN AT ONE OF THE THEATERS NAMED PRINCE. HE WAS A LITTLE DARK HANDSOME GUY WITH A HEAD FULL OF WHITE HAIR WHO AT HIS TALLEST WAS ALL OF 5’2″. AS A DOOR MAN PRINCE WAS PART OF A HUGE UNION WHICH ALLOWED HIM TO KNOW EVERY DOOR MAN IN THE ENTIRE THEATER DISTRICT, HENCE HE MADE THE CALL AND WE WERE IN EVERY SHOW EVER MADE.

FROM THERE THE LOVE FOR THE ARTS GREW. THERE WAS A PLACE IN BROOKLYN CALLED THE MUSE THAT HAD ALL TYPES OF CLASSES FOR CHILDREN. I COULDN’T WAIT FOR SATURDAY MORNINGS TO GET TO THE MUSE FOR ART CLASS. SOON AFTER COMPLETING ART I TOOK DANCE (DIDN’T WORK OUT TOO WELL, LOL). AFTER DANCE IT WAS DRAMA CLASS AND SO ON AND SO ON. THOSE WERE SOME OF THE BEST YEARS OF MY LIFE. NO RULES, NO RIGHT, NO WRONG, JUST DOING WHATEVER I FELT IN THOSE CLASSES AND KNOWING THAT I WOULD SOMEDAY USE THAT FREEDOM IN A FIELD I FELT MOST COMFORTABLE BEING A PART OF.

I REMEMBER BEING 7/8 YEARS OLD DRESSING UP IN MY MOM’S WIG AND DANCING AROUND THE HOUSE WITH AN OLD SKINNY SILVER AND BLACK MIC THAT HAD A PLUG BUT REALLY DIDN’T PLUG INTO ANYTHING, LOL. HOW FUNNY AS I LOOK BACK AT THAT. IF IT WASN’T THE MIC IT WAS A BRUSH AND IF IT WASN’T A BRUSH IT WAS A COMB, LOL.

I REMEMBER THE FIRST PIECE OF WAX I EVER BOUGHT, I MEAN MY MOTHER BOUGHT. IT WAS GREASE!!!! DON’T TRY IT, YOU KNOW YOU LOVED IT!! SO MANY SONGS ON THAT SOUNDTRACK THAT I LOVE I WORE IT OUT!! AND THEN THERE WAS THE SUGARHILL GANG! OH MY GOD! THAT SET IT OFF FOR ME. AND THEN CAME SALT N PEPA AND I KNEW HIP HOP WAS MY CALLING.

I BECAME ONE OF THE YOUNGEST FEMALE MCS TO BE SIGNED TO A MAJOR DEAL. MATTER OF FACT WHEN YOU HEAR OF ONE OF THE MOST POWERFUL WOMEN IN THE MUSIC BUSINESS BEING SYLVIA RHONE, I WAS HER FIRST SIGNING AS AN EXECUTIVE. THE WORLD WAS BEFORE ME AND I WAS EXTREMELY EXCITED TO ENTER A FORUM I HAD STUDIED SO MUCH ABOUT.

I HAD GONE TO LATIN QUARTERS AND UNION SQUARE. I SAW SOME OF THE BEST PERFORMANCES AT BOTH OF THOSE SPOTS INCLUDING PE, KRS 1, ERIC B & RAKIM, SALT N PEPA, JOE SKI LOVE, FRESH PRINCE AND JAZZY JEFF. THAT’S JUST TO NAME A FEW. NOW IT WAS GOING TO BE MY TURN AND I WAS GOING TO MAKE EVERYONE I KNEW HAPPY TO KNOW ME. LOL

THROUGHOUT MY YEARS IN THIS GAME OF ENTERTAINMENT I HAVE WORKED HARD TO REMAIN FOCUSED AND HUMBLE. I HAVE HAD UPS AND DOWNS AND HAVE LEARNED SOME OF THE MOST VALUABLE LESSONS AT THE SAME TIME HAVING EXPERIENCES THAT WERE TRULY PRICELESS. I HAVE SPROUTED MY WINGS BY GOING INTO OTHER SECTORS OF ENTERTAINMENT SUCH AS VOICE OVER,ACTING AND PRODUCING. I WROTE A BOOK OF INSPIRATIONAL WORDS TWO YEARS AGO CALLED JUST MY TAKE. I RECENTLY STARTED DJING AND FOUND A WHOLE NEW LOVE FOR HIP HOP MUSIC.

NOW I COME TO THE REASON WHY I FELT COMPELLED TO WRITE THIS IN THE FIRST PLACE. RECENTLY I SAW A COMMENT ON A BLOG WHERE SOMEONE MADE MENTION OF WHAT THEY THOUGHT WAS MY AGE AND HOW I SHOULD SIT DOWN. LOL SIT DOWN FOR WHAT? AS IF HE/SHE IS WARMING THE COUCH UP ENOUGH. I WAS BORN FOR THIS AND WHETHER YOU LIKE ME OR NOT YOU SHOULD AT LEAST RESPECT THE ART OF HIP HOP. THAT MEANING NO ONE TELLS NATALIE COLE SHE CAN’T SING ANYMORE, OR TONI BRAXTON, OR MADONNA OR ANYONE ELSE OUTSIDE OF HIP HOP. YOU DON’T SEE STEVE TYLER OR TINA TURNER OR STEVIE WONDER SITTING DOWN!! I NAME GREAT HEAVYWEIGHTS BECAUSE IN HIP HOP I AM THAT. NEVER GET IT TWISTED. AS LONG AS PEOPLE PUT PARAMETERS AROUND HIP HOP THE MORE WE LOSE POWER AND CONTROL. THE MORE WE END UP WITH REPEAT EPISODES OF THE MOTOWN ERA WHERE MULTI TALENTED ARTISTS MAKE A CAREER OF HITS AND HAVE NOTHING TO SHOW FOR IT AT THE END OF THE DAY. NO WAY TO SUPPORT THEMSELVES, NO HEALTH INSURANCE AND WHEN THEY DIE, NO MONEY FOR A PROPER BUREAL AND SERVICE. HIP HOP CAN AND WILL GO AWAY IF WE DON’T CONTINUE TO PAY RESPECT FOR ALL OF THOSE INVOLVED AND ALL THAT WE HAVE DONE TO GET THE ART WHERE IT IS TODAY. “YOU SIT DOWN!!!!!!!!” AND LEARN SOMETHING ABOUT WHAT YOU SAY YOU SO CALL “LOVE”. YOU DON’T “LOVE” HIP HOP MUSIC WHEN YOU BLATANTLY CRITIQUE MCS AND SAY HARMFUL AND HATEFUL COMMENTS THAT DO NOTHING BUT SUPPRESS AN ARTIST. YOU WANNA CRITIQUE? SAY SOMETHING THAT WILL HELP AN ARTIST ELEVATE THEIR GAME NOT TO DESTROY SOMEONE’S ATTEMPT AT SHARING THEIR WORKS. I WRITE THESE THOUGHTS NOT JUST IN MY DEFENSE BUT FOR ALL THOSE WHO CREATE DAILY AND ARE TOLD THAT THEY ARE NOT GOOD ENOUGH OR THAT THEY ARE TOO DIFFERENT WHEN IN FACT THAT’S WHAT ART IS ABOUT, BEING DIFFERENT.

I READ ANOTHER HATER COMMENT “WHY DOES SHE? (MEANING ME) STILL WEAR THEM SNEAKERS? ISN’T SHE TOO OLD FOR THAT?” LOL I BEEN WEARING NIKES, ADIDAS, PUMAS, LOTTOS, CONVERSE AND ANYTHING ELSE THAT I’VE WANTED TO WEAR ALL MY LIFE. I’M NOT DEFINED BY WHAT I WEAR NOR DO I MAKE AN ATTEMPT TO HIDE BEHIND THE LATEST FASHIONS. I AM ME!! SNEAKERS DON’T MAKE ANYONE LESS MATURE AND THEY CERTAINLY DON’T HAVE ANYTHING TO DO WITH A PERSON’S TALENT. I’LL STOP WEARING MINE WHEN RUSSELL STOPS WEARING HIS. DIDN’T KNOW THERE WAS AN AGE LIMIT FOR SNEAKERS IN HIP HOP, LOL, SOMEBODY BETTER TELL PASTRY SHOES BECAUSE THEY KEEP SENDING THEM TO ME AND WELL, I KEEP WEARING THEM, LOL. HOW SILLY? WHO ARE YOU AND WHAT KIND OF TIME DO YOU HAVE ON YOUR HANDS THAT YOU CAN FIND FAULT IN SOME ONE WEARING TENNIS SHOES? CREEP.

BOILS DOWN TO THIS! I WORKED MY ASS OFF TO GET WHERE I AM TODAY AND BEST BELIEVE I’LL BE ON THE SCENE WITH MY SNEAKERS AND A GANGSTA LEAN!! LOLLYTE

Comments
15 Responses to “EVERLASTING”
  1. QDNYC says:

    Bump the Haters Lyte, people can be so mean and they don’t deserve your energy. They clearly are miserable, probably are jealous that you are still doing ur thing after all of these years. I’ve seen a lot of negative comments about a lot of Artist’s (mainly in R&B) and I figure they must be doing something right if people are talking about them. When they stop talking is when Artist’s should worry, at least that is the saying right? LOL

    Awww @ the younger Lyte pic’s..

  2. Peter says:

    Well said! I can’t believe anyone would suggest that you, the original, the one who’s shoulders many of today’s artist are standing on, should sit down. Culture, art, music and hip hop, would be diminished without you!

    Some just don’t get it. It’s the variety, of style, of creativity, of gender, and yes, of age, that makes hip hop so rich, and has enabled it to endure through the decades! If you hadn’t continued to persist, hip would have ceased to exist!

    Much Love to you MC Lyte. Keep doing what you do, for as long as you like…in any shoes you want!

    Peter

  3. WreckAB says:

    Lyte, for the past who knows how long, myself & countless others have considered ur music instant Classic material. I also think that despite what those detractors may say, when it comes 2 Hip Hop & rocking mics, ur are among the greatest, HANDS DOWN, MALE OR FEMALE, YOUNG OR OLD… You set a precedent, & those who dont understand their history are the ones that want to say negative things about older MCees being involved in music still…Matter of fact, if they would sit THEIR asses down 4 a second & take notes, then maybe our musical genre wouldnt be in the decline that its in now. I am constantly told that I should give up rhyming myself! I’m 36 years old with a family but I’ve been spitting since the 8th grade, & was never discovvered, but I am STILL reaching for the dream. In my mind, this is an art form, this is poetry & literature, & people constantly go back & read old literary classics because they simply enjoy them, some authors,v70, 80 90 years old. Why does Hip Hop have to have an age threshhold? Makes me think that after how many years, our music is still considered a fad for the young’uns….well Lyte, the young ones aint got nothing 2 talk about, & im goin to continue to rock til the wheels fall off, gray hair & all, on stage with a walker & my nurse… because Hip Hop is all I know…Thanks for still holdin it down…Hmmm…gotta taste 4 Cappuchino, think I’ll order a cup! Peace Lyte WreckAB

  4. Bill Berger says:

    Hi – I was head International and we worked together at Elektra with Sylvia. Saw your website and thought I would say Hi and wish you luck – you were so nice to work with (unlike many others :) – I met your Dad at Lou Maglia’s wedding and please say hello to him for me as well.

    Best regards
    Bill

  5. Unbridled.mind says:

    Lyte, you’re still here because you were the best to do it and anyone with the ears and goods sense to listen to you know knows this. Your music does a service to women, men, youth, Hip Hop culture and no blog can away the impact you have made. If not, why do we constantly compare other female MCs to you or talk about you with respect and even nostalgia? You were born to represent; that’s why when you stand on that stage in your Converses because you stand FOR the movement (or what we hoped it would be) and the truth in it. Age? Shoes? These don’t demarcate your worth and relevance, it’s a shame that some ignorant people can’t see that.

    I’m doing a Feature Writing module in my First Degree and would love to interview you.

  6. AtLas' says:

    Small minds discuss people. Great minds discuss ideas. I’d be happy to swap ideas with you any time.

    ~AtLas’
    “I am who I am, not yet who I’ll be”

  7. Ayana Soyini says:

    Tell em why you mad sis!!! lol I feel you though. Cats feel cause it’s the internet they can just type any ole fuckery. *kiss teet* And then people got the nerve to constantly ask, where are all the female emcees?!?!?! Um…HELLO…right in front of you still ROCKING and doing the damn thang!!!!! lol I would LOVE to work with you one day, whether recording a song, performing on stage or championing humaitarian issues…I’ve always admired your class and composure. Stay blessed! :-)

  8. Just showing much love and thanking you for being REAL because by you knowing what’s going on around you and about you let’s me know that YOU care about what your fans think what I think and it doesn’t get any realer than that. It’s funny cus I Love sneakers at the age of 33 and I have 50 to 60 in my closet.
    1 more thing for “THE HATERS” I had the opportunity to meet MC LYTE (thanks K-Rock) and when I was introduced to her from her chair Lyte stood up and greeted me as if she was honored however I was more honored and gained MORE respect for her as a ARTIST & PERSON than I had before. ANd they hater that made the negative comment proably don’t even stand up in church.
    So big ups MA-ME keep doing you so you can continue to inspire your fans so we can do US. LOVE the LYTE & keep shining BRYTE.

  9. DJ BackSide says:

    this blog entry is why i rock the party that rocks the body.

    werd up lyte…i swear i think the title of this post shoulda actually been ‘creep’. classic yo. and as for dem pastrys…

    (if you can’t see the pic——>http://tinyurl.com/bv3kmt)

  10. tia says:

    I’m with you on the kicks. I’m the same way about my subwoofers and amps as I don’t believe there’s such a thing as being too old for enhanced car stereo. Why should I be forced to tolerate factory just because people think at 39 I should have outgrown it? Whatever, man. People disgust me with all their judgments and preoccupation with what other people are doing. If they put one-fourth of that energy into focusing on their real purpose and achieving something in life as have the people they are knocking, they’d be a helluva lot better off. The fact that you have your own mind and continue to shine is what they can’t stand, and I def applaud you for simply doing you. Put ‘em on IG mode, and don’t even slow your stride.

  11. Ken says:

    Lyte i have been a fan of yours since thirteen years old (I’m 32 now). We have met a few times, been to quite a few of your shows, and weve corresponded through email. I LOVE YOU!! I too have heard negative comments about you too as well for many many years now. They say your washed up, boring, can’t rap anymore, old, need to give it up e.t.c. My only anger with myself is that I didn’t defend you. I didn’t because there are alot of ignorant idiots out their that don’t represent hip hop, know hip hop and think Souljah Boy Tell Em is the greatest thing in hip hop.

    Of course I don’t expect them to like or represent you because they haven’t followed you the way I have. When I went to jail a few years ago they said 50 cent was the greatest rapper of all time I wanted to kill myself. Any repectable media, rap magazine, rapper e.t.c. (Common, KRS One) e.t.c. without blinking will say you are the greatest female rapper of all time. You are the female LL Cool J of rap. Sure Lauren Hill, Queen Latifah are close second’s with honorable mentions going to Rah Diggah, Bahamadia e.t.c. but none have continued to do this the way you have.

    You are a female rapper in a male dominated industry for (what’s it been 23 years now?). Rappers have a shelf life of around 5 years with some exceptions. While as a fan I have not always liked some of your work or some of the directions you have gone in i have respected it. they don’t know about the pressure of conforming to a label when your record sales don’t meet or exceed expectations, they don’t know about the pressures of going more commercial to sell units. When you go commercial they say you sold out; when you keep it street they don’t buy or support you. You can’t keep makin ‘Rouhgneck’ music when you almost 40 forever. As you said in Wonder Years, your too evolved for that.

    They don’t know about your speaches at colleges and universities, about Rocking the vote, pregnancy, a.i.d.s. awareness, equal respect for females in Hip Hop e.t.c. Like you or not they don’t know your history nor do they know not only what youv’e done IN hip hop but OUTSIDE of hip hop as well. This generation has no respect for anything. It’s all about what is hot NOW not yesterday. They don’t wanna hear from you, LL, KRS One, Public Enemy hell some don’t even wanna hear from Jay Z or Nas anymore.

    You have to decide what’s best for you. You had the song ‘TRG’ on your ‘Bad As I wanna Be’ album. Some of those things you spoke of on that song may apply to you too. However, you are absolutely right when you say you are a hip hop heavyweight. You know you’ve bust your ass for decades to earn that title. That can’t be taken away form you from anyone. Rather you rap for 600 more years or turn in the mic now you are a LEGEND!! One people aren’t gonna respect you cause your a female. Two when your around all the time people take you for granted and don’t appreciate you. How do we not know if Biggie and Tupac never died if people would say their boring and old now too?

    Hip Hop has lost It’s females. Where are they? Lil kim, Lauren Hill, Brat, Foxxy, Rah Diggah e.t.c. Your the only one continuously carrying the tourch like you or not album out or not. When they hate on you they just don’t understand you passion and love for hip hop. When is the last time you’ve sold any real units? When is the last time you were with a label. You left Elektra in what 98′ and the Overbrook thing didn’t work out so you’ve been doing this soley for your love of the game. It’s been eleven years since you’ve been with a major label. Your obviously not doing it jus for the money.

    No your not popular like you once were and yes alot of people wish you’d hang it up and jus go away. However some of us will ALWAYS appreciate you for what you did, done and are doing. We know your story, your heart and direction and can relate to your passion to continue to do what you love in spite of adversity. You hung in there and took the heat and the critisisms when other rappers said the hell with this I’m outta here. They don’t understand you started doing this waaaay back when you were like sixteen..this is practiclly all you know.

    Rathe you should give it up or not is not for me to decide. All I know is that when I download and listen to ‘Almost September’ I can appreciate all you continue to do and it brings a smile to my face knowing that one of my favorite artist is still doing it for the love and NOT for the love of money. Tha’s what Hip Hop is all about.

  12. Tri says:

    Lyte….love you and what you’ve done and what you continue to do. I grew up listening to you and I still go into my “Paper Thin” routine when I have to shut someone down. :-) The haters you read on those blogs were clearly some youngins that don’t know the history of hip hop and don’t understand that you are living legend in the game. That’s probably the most frustrating part of these new so-called lovers of hip hop. They claim they love the music, the culture the way of life, but refuse to pay homage to the people, like yourself who have paved the way. I’ll tell you this…you better NOT sit down!!!!! :-) What THEY are saying is really Paper Thin.

  13. Dawn says:

    While I was reading this post, it happened that a documentary called “Yo You Ma & Friends: Joy” was on. Yo Yo did a holiday album and on one of the tracks, he worked with Joshua Redman – tremendous piece. Josh was talking about Yo Yo, saying that he approaches each and every note played with so much love, intention and soul that it made him step up his game and it truly inspired him.

    It was a perfect moment, because I was feeling this about you as I was reading your post, Lyte. Each and every project you engage in, every step you walk in, every new pursuit you take on reflects your deep love and dedication to your art. Your rhymes, your poetry, your reverence for hip hop, the content in your speaking engagements, your style, your kindness toward your fans and those around you…. are all golden, and all pure.

    I think one of the best things about you is your age. You are a testament to staying power and dedication. You are a leader and innovator. And you have embraced the new playing field in the music/entertainment business and maximized the opportunities you have created for yourself. That’s what it’s all about. As a middle-aged singer (and a teacher) myself, I honor and am inspired by the love you bring to your art. You are an evolved woman who really understands how to grow, how to diversify and you get it. You honor your art and love for hip hop culture through discipline and smart business sense. AND your music is always DOPE.

    My favorite picture of you is the one for Harley, where the caption says, “You have to dream it to be it, so I’m dreaming.” I keep the picture on my desktop and see it many times a day. It helps me stay focused and inspired, because you truly embody that. Clearly the persons disparaging you have lost their dreams and find it necessary to waste their time trying to bring you down, rather than trying to elevate themselves. That’s their loss and THEIR problem. What they say about you is irrelevant – it carries NO weight. They do not have your voice because they don’t know who they are. If they did, they wouldn’t try to drag you down.

    Never sit down! I raise my fist in solidarity with you for being a tremendous role model for me all these years. I love hip hop and it makes me a better person, better teacher and a better artist. You go on and rock what you want, because it works…and you just keep getting better.

    So, thank you, with mad move and respect……

  14. Sheela says:

    OMG Lyte you are the most beautiful, tough and talented woman in the world of music hands down. I’ve been a fan of yours ever since I can remember and you are a huge inspiration to me and all the ladies out there. I am glad you posted this because now I know you will NEVER “sit down” (WTF is that supposed to mean anyway lol) — you will always represent to the fullest! Mad love Ma!
    Oh, and haterz can suck it ;)

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