One Day It'll All Make Sense: A Book Review
A Rapper's Autobiography (with help from Adam Bradley)
When I first picked up this autobiography by Common, I wondered just how intriguing the life of a rapper could be to someone my age. Plus, I’m not a fan of current rap. I expected that my hub followers might choose to skip this review. But, I had seen him on a TV talk show (The View, perhaps) where he talked about his spiritual progression, and I had heard the news stories from FOX News anchors who took issue with Common being invited to render a piece of his poetry at the White House, so I wanted to know just who this guy was. At first, I thought I’d made a mistake—the early chapters of One Day It’ll All Make Sense didn’t draw me in. However, eventually I could not put it down.
The book has an interesting structure. Each chapter begins with a letter, either to a person, a concept or a song important to Common’s life. I liked those letters. They tended to say a lot about the core person Common is or the person he was seeking to become. Each chapter also contains parts written by his mother. She raised Rashid (his real name) alone, and they have a very strong bond. The two even discuss whether Rashid is a Mama’s boy or not. Their mutual conclusion—maybe. His mother’s sections give a second perspective to the topic of each chapter. Readers can tell that she knows her son very well.
Common is the Real Deal
As the book progresses, the information Common shares gets more insightful, more real.
He delves into his spiritual growth and how that impacts the growth of his lyrics. His language becomes more lyrical and less hip. For instance, on page 221 when discussing his breakup with Erykah Badu, he writes, I had to trust that God knows best. God has the greatest things in store for you if you just allow them to happen. Later he talks about his desire to be a humble king, someone who owns his own greatness, but uses it in service to others. He lets readers inside his actor's mind (That's his current passion; he was the lead in Just Wright with Queen Latifa), and his creative process. He talks about his friendships with D’Angelo and Kanye West, his admiration of President Obama, and his former love for, singer, Erykah Badu and his current, more mature love for tennis great, Serena Williams.By the time I finished reading, I wanted to go back to the beginning and see if perhaps I had missed something in those early chapters.
Lonnie Rashid Lynn, AKA Common, raised my level of respect for rappers (some anyway). He seems to really want to use his powers for good. In sharing his deeper self with readers, he may have just broadened his audience ( I checked him out on YouTube) and become the catalyst for his own tipping point. If you are already a fan, you’ll really enjoy One Day It’ll All Make Sense. If you don’t really like most rap but enjoy the beats that rappers use, take a chance on Common. He actually has something to say! (FYI: Just a little of the language might be slightly offensive).
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