I was lucky enough to be granted some phone time with the notoriously media-shy mad genius known as Kool Keith, and it gave me some unique insight into the wonderful world of the Spankmaster.
An indelible experience at the Warped Tour in the Skydome a few years back connected Keith and me, and the mystery around Poppa Large simultaneously expanded and contracted as I spent the day hosting a trip around downtown Toronto with hip-hop's first Black Elvis impersonator. We ate pizza, shopped for jerseys and went sightseeing to spots that caught his interest. In person, he's quiet, generous and cordial, but onstage it's a whole different thing.
Music is where Kool Keith lets his infinitely indefinable mind out, resulting, for better or worse, in some of the most imaginative hip-hop (and beyond) music to ever come out of New York City, or the world.
Kool Keith's song Blue Flowers lets you to determine your abnormal art threshold. Are you cool with Keith Thornton's unprecedented collection of pseudo-scientific, cyber-world-sex-style, organized confusion-illusion superhuman cartoon music? If not, go back to listening to 808s & Heartbreak or Tha Carter III and return to the comfort zone the masses adore so familiarly.
The mysterious MC has fathered so many styles since 1984 that he must have a thousand illegitimate lyrical children. The one and only Kool Keith has never looked back.
But many questions remain to be asked about the notoriously eccentric MC legend, such as:
* Does he really have a sex dungeon in his Los Angeles palace?
* Is he really a triple-XXX porn director?
* Does Toronto-spawned 80s rhyme pioneer HDV now work side by side with Kool Keith as the pimptastic rapper Jacky Jasper?
* Did Keith really dis Andre 3000?
* What the hell is up with the story behind the Dr. Octagon/Nogatco Rd./The Return Of Dr. Octagon albums anyways?
* Is the good (evil) Doctor dead or alive, and now resurrected or reincarnated?
* Where is that rumored VH1 reality TV show?
* Does he use hard drugs or drink alcohol to get that crazy and creative?
* Is he really gonna release an album called Pissy Pete And Defecation Part 3: Return Of The Shit Man?
* Will one of Kool Keith's many alter egos actually battle one of RZA's alter egos?