Once upon a time, while an old man was enjoying a quiet day of fishing on the outskirts of the Ohio River, he felt a gentle tug on the other end of his fishing line. Expecting a substantial amount of resistance, he planted his muddy boots firmly on the river bank and pulled forcefully. To his surprise, his fishing rod gave up rather quickly and he was sent whirling into the air, crashing down hard onto his left buttock.
With excitement on his face, he brushed off his worn overalls — running his hand gently over what would surely manifest itself into an impressive bruise by morning time — and made his way toward his prize. It was at the end of a long day of fishing and so far he had caught himself exactly nothing. Not even a smallmouth bass for dinner. This was the most excitement he had had all day.
To his disappointment, amongst the weed beds, rocky banks and woody debris, there lay not the large catfish that he had hoped for but rather a round, silver object which gave off a nasty glare in the sun. He shielded his eyes and approached the mysterious item, his curiosity now peaked. He lifted it onto his fingertips and carefully flipped it over. The silver mystery that had caused so much commotion now had an identity: it was a Compact Disc. The kind of Compact Disc that had once threatened to replace his entire vinyl record collection, before the novelty of them became somewhat of an investment.
“These damn things!” He gruffed, shaking his head in frustration and tossing the disc into a nearby bush. He stomped off towards his fishing rod and eye-balled a fat, juicy worm laying atop a pile of vulnerable contestants he had purchased from the local Sporting Goods store. Just then, a soft, almost ethereal glow caught the corner of his eye and he turned his head ever-so-slightly towards it. It was that damn CD again, catching the sunlight in its silver reflection. He stood motionless for a moment, slightly convicted about littering in his favorite fishing spot, but more-so he found himself wondering what exactly was on that damn CD anyway. Could it be Bing Crosby, Dean Martin…or his favorite, Frank Sinatra? He had never forgiven his wife for volunteering to host the neighborhood garage sale and mistakenly placing a handful of his favorite records out for sale. He had convinced himself that she had done it on purpose, a payback for giving her grandmother’s fine china to the local Goodwill — ’cause he needed that damn space in the damn dining room hutch to showcase his damn huntin’ trophies!
His old, rusty pickup truck didn’t even have a radio, much less a CD Player. The mystery grew; what the hell was on this damn disc and how the hell can he find out?
He loaded up his fishing gear, packed the unopened cans of Budweiser and the container of live worms back into his cooler, and headed towards home. The CD sat next to him on the front seat, covered in dirt and debris from its journey through the Ohio River. “How am I gon’ get this damn thing to play?” He thought to himself. As he cleaned the disc off on his sleeve, he noticed a faded symbol written in permanent marker and barely legible. As he looked closer he realized it wasn’t a symbol….it was….a word…no, a drawing….no….he pulled out his reading glasses from his front pocket and began to read: 0…2…..9…..8….it was a series of numbers and dashes. A phone number by the looks of it. He counted nine numbers. The first number was worn off completely.
“Oh, two….oh, two,” He repeated to himself. “What the hell starts with an oh two?!” Then suddenly it dawned on him. “One oh two….two oh two….three oh two…four oh two…Five….FIVE oh two! FIVE OH TWO!” He exclaimed. 502 was the area code the city of Louisville, Kentucky, which was just a few miles east of where he had been fishing all day. “Well, I’ll be damn!” He said. “I’ll just call up this number and ask ‘em what’s on the damn disc and how the hell did it get in the damn river. Save me a lot of damn time!”
Later that evening after dinner, he decided it was time to unveil the mystery. He dialed the number slowly…5…0…2…
The man on the other end of the line, who introduced himself only as Brooks, was warm and friendly, and before long the old man found himself engaging in hours of conversation with him. They laughed uncontrollably at story of the lone CD, floating along the Ohio River and the bruise it had left on the old man’s backside. As they fell into deeper conversation, Brooks explained to the old man that for years he had tried to make it in the music industry. He had a dream of performing for millions, and the CD he found in the river was in fact his own music, recorded at his home studio and burnt onto discs in an effort to get his music played on the streets…and eventually on the radio. The old man didn’t understand the concept of burning a Compact Disc and how the hell that could make this man’s dreams come true. Why the hell would you wanna start a damn CD on fire? He thought to himself. Must be some weird, superstitious ritual, he decided, just as those broadway folk tell each other to break a leg. Why the hell would you tell someone to break a leg? He shrugged and sighed to himself.
Brooks went on to explain that earlier that year his wife had left him. She walked out on him unannounced, leaving behind his children who were heartbroken. That night, he walked to a nearby bridge. Overcome with emotion, he stood there hopelessly staring into the icy, black water for hours. Just as he was about to turn and head back home, he pulled that CD out of his coat pocket and whirled it off the bridge and into the night. Now a single father forced to raise his children on his own, without their mother, he had no choice but to walk away from his hopes of one day being a successful recording artist. That night, he had given up his dream.
The old man’s heart felt heavy and he began to feel an overwhelming amount of compassion for this young man who had given up everything for his family. He was determined to help his new friend out. Yes, he was going to help him in any way that he could.
The man decided he would give the now infamous CD to his son, in the hopes that it might help Brooks catch the big break he longed for. It was his only chance. His son managed a heavy-metal band, which started out playing at local clubs on the weekends and ended up opening for some pretty well-known rock groups at the Yum! center over the past year. His old man always thought it was a waste of time, told him time and again he needed to get a real job, earn a steady paycheck like The Lawn Care Service he had established had provided him for over 40 years.
As it turned out, his son knew someone who knew someone who knew someone and that damn compact disc eventually made its way into the hands of a man named Eric Hall, former employee of The Howard Stern show and current sales representative for a record label called Hoopla Worldwide. By the time it had landed in his possession, Hall had already heard the stories of how the disc had saved a man’s life on the banks of the Ohio River when its reflection in the sunlight led Old Man Fisher’s attention to a man barely breathing, floating face down in the river. He pulled him up to the shore, gave him mouth-to-mouth and saved that man’s life. All thanks to that damn CD. A bit of an exaggeration of course, but word travels fast and details are often embellished along the way. Intrigued by the stories he had heard surrounding this mysterious disc, Hall carefully placed it into his Bose system and hit ‘Play’.
Discovered on the banks of the Ohio River, new rap artist phenomenon Freshwadda Brooks is gearing up for his world premiere as the latest artist signed to the Hoopla Worldwide / WIDEawake Death Row Records family. Being internationally distributed through eOne Music Distribution, Freshwadda will release a 7 song EP called “The New 7 Day Theory”, a play off of Tupac Shakur’s fifth and final studio album “The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory” written just days before his fatal shooting in September 1996 and released by Death Row Records posthumous.
With his internet campaign nonexistent and the mystery of his identity remaining hush-hush, Freshwadda Brooks is preparing for the release of his first single, a collaboration with Audio Stepchild, slated to be released in the fall of 2012.
Will Freshwadda Brooks be that next big fish in the industry? Only time will tell. But he sure is an interesting catch.