Out of Town: Emmitt James


8/1/13

Seeing Hip Hop artist Emmitt James perform, is like being at a spiritually moving and intense concert, one whose artist is passionate about his work and just as equally as passionate about those that surround him.  The audience soaks up with James’ energy and leaves the concert feeling electrified and renewed as if they had just experienced something for the first time.

And that’s exactly how James’ wants you to feel.

Born and raised in Milwaukee, Wis., James (20) is not only a Hip Hop artist, but also a nationally acclaimed spoken word poet, something that has clearly influenced his music. In high school, he was introduced to spoken word poetry, which made him realize that his words had power.

“I love poetry,” James said. “But I’ve always loved music.”

James, currently a student at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, wanted to balance these passions.

“When I got to college I said I wanted people to identify me just as much as a poet as a hip hop artists,” James said.

James has been successful in doing so, releasing his second EP: “Until I’m a Dead Poet” in 2012, following his first, “Are You Listening Yet?” This past year, James has been performing around the country from his hometown of Milwaukee to New York.

Through his music, James hopes to send an inspiring message to his listeners and audience.

“You can only go as far as you want to be…A struggle can be a beautiful thing,” James said.

His past also heavily influences his writing and music, which is so personal sometimes that it almost makes you uncomfortable—is he really sharing all of this with you? The answer is yes, and that’s what makes James so electrifying.

James’ electricity translates when he’s performing on stage. He wants his audience to experience new things. Going to a school in the middle of Wisconsin, James struggles with finding diversity. But he’s embraced that. He wants to introduce people to hip hop who have never been really exposed to it before.

He wants his audience to leave saying, “I thought it was a hip hop concert and that’s what I was expecting, but it was so much better than I thought.’”

Usually when performing, hip hop artists, play a recording of their track and sing over it. James takes a step back from this in his performances, oftentimes having concerts with live bands which also allows him to collaborate and support other artists. He doesn’t plan on having a band at all concerts, however in future performances, he plans on having a DJ and a live drummer.

James is changing  the hip hop world one honest and hard-hitting lyric at a time. He’s changing it with contagious performances that highlight musicality and knowledge of what gets a crowd to move.

For James, his career as a musician and performer is just beginning. Currently he is excited about a new track entitled “Mama’s Favorite” which he says will be the “birth of a new project.”

James’ new music video is scheduled to release on July 5. He has upcoming shows booked in Milwaukee as well as Stevens Point, Wis. For full listings of shows and upcoming events, check out his Facebook page: Emmitt James Music and Twitter: @Emmitt_James.

Published in The Grey Estates Zine.

A day in the life of a freshman


9/8/11

The first day at college for a freshman can be nerve-wracking, exciting, and ever so crazy. The Pointer was able to see it all. Following two freshmen exploring their way through a new place is nothing short of interesting Freshmen often come into college with a picture of it in their head of what they think it will be like. “The things I picture most [about college life] are big frat parties and lecture halls where the teacher seems a mile away, probably because that is how movies portray a ‘typical college,’” said Dana Thompson, freshman graphic design major.

One of the most exciting aspects of college life for freshmen is the fact that this will be the first time, for many, that they’re away from their parents. The fact that you are not supervised, have no curfew, and don’t have parents ragging on you to get your homework done is just the freedom that high school students yearn for. Now it’s finally here. With all the thrills in that newfound freedom there inevitably come some worries.

“The thing I am most nervous about is staying organized. In high school, our teachers still chased us around to remind us of our make-up math test for the following morning,” Thompson said.
Many freshmen also come into college knowing very few or no people at all.

“I’m most excited about meeting new people,” said Jacob Doney, freshman physics and chemistry major. “Coming from a high school of 600 kids, there’s not a whole lot of variety going on.”
Many freshmen have already met new people through the “University of Wisconsin Stevens Point Class of 2015” group on Facebook. Both Thompson and Doney said that they have already made a few friends through the group and plan on meeting up with them.

Facebook also has become a great means of communication for meeting a random roommate.

“I know my roommate just from Facebook. We were both partnered with different girls; we actually lived in different dorms. She wanted a new roommate and my roommate could no longer attend UWSP so we were both in need of a change,” Thompson said.

Doney found out who his roommate was going to be a few weeks ago, who is actually an international student from Korea. “I can’t wait. It’ll be a fun experience,” Doney said.

The real college life sometimes isn’t what freshmen have imagined it to be, but that’s not always a bad thing. Saturday was a rainy day here in Stevens Point and that caused a few changes in plans for some people.

“I was sitting by myself, in my room, on Facebook in the first moments I had in college. It was pouring outside so nobody really wanted to go outside, so I was stuck in my room,” Doney said. However, being stuck inside the dorms for a while made meeting new people that much more easy.

“The best part of my day was meeting my roommate and our hall mates. We went bowling down the hallway with a little plastic bowling set. Then, a few brave souls went body bowling with a blanket. It was by far the best icebreaker ever,” Thompson said.

The first night of college can be an experience for many freshmen. Doney spent the night hanging out with the new friends that he made in his dorm. Thompson went over to her friend’s house to meet some upperclassmen.

The ability to meet new people at Stevens Point is something that surprised both Doney and Thompson the most.

“A lot of people are extremely friendly here. I mean, how many places can you turn to the person next to you, whom you›ve never met before, and just start talking to them?” Doney said.

Doney and Thompson both arrived at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point on Saturday with different expectations about what college life is really like. Most of these expectations involved pictures portrayed by films and television. Real college sometimes may not be what incoming freshmen are expecting, but rarely is that a bad thing.