And now for the wildest thing you’ll read all week (yes, wilder than Obama having to hold Trump’s hand through this whole being president thing).
Earlier this week, Hamilton star Lin-Manuel Miranda appeared on comedian Marc Maron’s WTF podcast, where he revealed a pretty crazy part of his high school experience. “There’s a famous alum of my high school named — well, his rapper name is Immortal Technique,” he said. “He was our school bully.” By the sounds of it, he was the most clichéd school bully ever.
He terrorized kids. He’d throw them in the garbage. I got thrown in the garbage by him.
However, even as a school bully (which we can totally see), Miranda says Immortal Technique, who was known simply as Felipe back then, was drawn to the stage. “He was in the school play! He got a part senior year and I was like, ‘Oh my God, I’m in a fucking play with the dude who scares the shit out of all my friends!’” he said.
Being the super positive guy he is, however, Miranda doesn’t harbor any ill will towards Immortal Technique. “He’s one of the most politically, ideological [artists], he really made an incredible life for himself as a rapper,” he said. “He was a really angry kid and it’s been wonderful to watch him grow up and like, find a political outlet for that anger.”
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Immortal Technique reflected on his own transformation in a 2013 episode of the YouTube series WHO AM I. "I could always rhyme from the time I was about nine years old, but I never really took it seriously until I got out on parole," he said. "They threw me in the hole a couple of times and I didn't have nothing else to do but stare at a fucking wall in my boxers. A Native American trustee basically gave me a sheet of paper and pencil like 'here, don't go crazy.'"
Here’s a prime example of how hip-hop can change lives. Rap music gave Immortal Technique an outlet for his anger and a purpose for his talents, while it also laid the foundation for Lin-Manuel Miranda’s enormously successful Hamilton play and turned him into a Broadway star. A certain Lupe Fiasco song comes to mind, doesn’t it?
Listen to the full podcast here (Miranda talks about Immortal Technique at the 39-minute mark).
By Andy James. Follow him on Twitter.