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CSUSB Toastmasters: My Favorite Things: Part 2

On Aug. 10th, I was able to re-do my 8th speech entitled, “My Favorite Things,” because I was put on the spot the last time we had a meeting at CSUSB Toastmasters. I was able to organize what I wanted to say, and presented a great speech.

My favorite things were about my favorite music artists’ who are Nas, The Pharcyde and Blu & Exile.

I started my speech with a quote from Nas’ song, “You’re the Man.” “When everything around me got cloudy, the chair became a king’s throne, my destiny found me. It was clear why the struggle was so painful. Metamorphoses this what I changed to, and God I’m so thankful.”- Nas

I had the physical copies of my favorite albums from the artists’ mentioned above. They are Nas’ “Stillmatic”, The Pharcyde’s “Labcabincalifornia” and Blu & Exile’s “Give Me My Flowers While I Could Still Smell Them.”

Every time I spoke about a specific artist, I had the album cover to give the audience a visual, and I played a snippet of my favorite songs from the album.

The first song I spoke about was Nas’ “One Mic” and how Nas’ vocal tone was changing from high to low throughout the song, and that was how I was feeling while I was in the hospital as a teenager: highs and lows.

Nas’ One Mic:

During the 2007-2008 school year, I transferred to California State University, Long Beach and was on academic probation my whole college career. I spoke about The Pharcyde’s song “Runnin,’” which is about bullying and how to overcome stress.

Their album Labcabincalifornia and especially their song “Runnin’” was in heavy rotation during this dark period for me. I also said that I credited the group for helping me eventually graduate from college.

The Pharcyde’s Runnin’:

I spoke about how I came across Blu & Exile by pure accident when I was talking to a friend about music. I eventually bought their album “Give Me My Flowers While I Could Still Smell Them.”

I connected with Blu’s poetic lyrics and Exile’s beautiful atmosphere of beats. Their song “More Out of Life,” is where Blu explains that we all want more out of life, and that he is trying to save his soul through the music he creates.

Blu & Exile’s More Out of Life:

I concluded my speech by saying these artists’ encouraging lyrics helped me realize how important it is to be myself and to be authentic. I also said that the one of the things that connects these artists’ together for me is that there is a meaning behind their names.

For example, …

Nas, which is also his real name means helper and protector in Arabic.

The Pharcyde means a name they made up called “BOTTTOS,” which is an acronym for “Break on through to the other side,” which also means be different by being creative.

Blu means the reflection of Hip-Hop as the sky is the reflection of the ocean.

My evaluator said he liked how I started my speech with a powerful quote and he could tell why I liked Nas’ One Mic so much because he was able the hear what I was talking about when Nas was changing his vocal tone from high to low throughout the song. He also liked how I connected The Pharcyde’s Runnin’ to the stress I was feeling while I was at CSULB.

The only thing he suggested I should have done better was to elaborate about the song I was talking about a little more before playing it. Other than that, he said I did a great job.

* I have another “CalmandStrong” PowerPoint Presentation where I talk about my experience with having cancer as a teenager and I have videos from the inFAMOUS video game franchise and music from Nas and The Pharcyde to help tell my story.

* The Pharcyde has been broken up for many years and one of my goals is to help put the group back together once they see how powerful their music was to me.

Citations and Disclaimer…

I do not own any content from the album covers displayed from Nas, The Pharcyde and Blu & Exile.

No Copyright Intended. All image content is copyright to their respective owners. All rights go to Nas, The Pharcyde and Blu & Exile.

Blu & Exile More Out of Life. Perf. Blu & Exile. YouTube. LiquidSwordsHipHop, 2 Sept. 2012. Web. 12 Aug. 2016.

Nas One Mic. Perf. Nas. YouTube. NasVEVO, 25 Oct. 2009. Web. 12 Aug. 2016.

The Pharcyde Runnin' Perf. FatLip, Slimkid Tre, Imani. YouTube. Rapcity1Channel, 11 Feb. 2015. Web. 12 Aug. 2016.

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