by Kameo Chambers
“If Not Now, Then When” is my third curated playlist. It is a motivational playlist intended to encourage its audience to get up and reach their goals. It’s a tool used to guide listeners into a world of endless possibility and opportunity. These six songs open the door to chance. Together, they formulate the question, if not now, then when?
The first half begins with energetic spirits starting with Cashier Fresh’s “Say Less.” He paints a clear visual of his status in his community saying, “I been good in my hood I do not have no problems” differentiating between him and any opponents with the lyrics, “when you on the block, your head on a swivel you watching them cars, them cuts, and them alleys.” When you reach popularity, it is easy to confidently approach issues head-on because only then can you really “step on they neck.” Listeners should use this track as a battle song when striving towards any goal. This gallant demeanor should be embraced and adopted by all. With great diligence and a suave manner you can also “say less” like Fresh.
The playlist then flows smoothly into “No Safety” by Digital Nas. Every self-starter needs to listen to this song. Digital Nas’ affirmation, “I won’t walk through unless you pay me,” speaks to every hard worker who has been overlooked and gives not only hope but confidence to his listeners.
“Rollin” by Diana Gordon is a beautiful track that uplifts the spirit. Gordon encourages her audience to take a step back from the day-to-day and have some fun. This song is a great reminder that life should not be all work and no play.
The last half takes a deeper turn compared to the previous lighthearted feel. Though upbeat, Sahbabii’s “Racist” is quite political. Sahbabii creates an allegory between his jewelry and race relations in America. He compares his white diamonds to white racists and calls out white supremacists. Listeners should use this song as motivation to take a stand and speak up for what they believe in.
Kodie Shane’s “Shut Up” is a not-so-love song to her ex about moving on from heartbreak. This powerful track gives insight to the ups and downs of the relationship. Shane gives perspective to listeners, illustrating that a breakup is not the end of the world, and sometimes you just have to tell someone to “shut up.”
“If Not Now, Then When” ends with the all-star Future track “Never Stop.” The song is the perfect end to this playlist. Future guides his audience to never stop trying to attain their goals. He states, “Hard-work and perseverance, they ain’t related,” which is an enlightened observation. To work hard is not synonymous with diligence because you can continue to work without endurance or putting in any effort. This final song is a testament to the overall theme of this playlist and loops casually back to the beginning.
Kameo Chambers is from Philadelphia, PA. She is a sophomore at Pitt-Bradford majoring in interdisciplinary arts, specializing in writing and graphic design. She has a passion for art, music, and fashion. She aspires to be an art director.