It Ain’t Easy Being Sleezy By Jhantu Randall




That title comes directly from a moniker that Tacoma artist K. Sleez has created for himself. Using it as a brand, it allows him to say some of the most outlandish stuff on his social media and in turn, drives countless people to check out his music. Maybe it’s the extreme confidence to know that you can back up your words that draws people in, or, on the other hand, it could be that confidence that may appear as arrogance that pulls others. Either way people are listening, whether they love it or hate it lies entirely upon them!

I bring that up because its that fearlessness to offend that actually drew me to K. Sleez’s work in the first place. Being fortunate enough to see him perform last New Year's Eve gave me a new perspective on what his music truly brings to the mix in this current scene. The fact that his energy on stage matches the heavy west coast vibe of his beat selection solidified my opinion that he was willing to say or do anything to amplify his performance and double down on his brand. It was due to that fact that it took me nearly a year before I was ready to actually cover his project, “It Ain’t EZ Being Sleezy.”

Not knowing if I could truly cover it in the right way I was ready for the challenge. Meeting up with Sleezy a few weeks ago to purchase a copy of his album, we sat and smoked as we talked about a variety of things. After a few minutes of him relaying his history to me we began to talk about influences as well as trading bars back and forth. One of the statements that stood out most to me was Sleez stating, “I’m just here to have a good time and show y’all how its done, because I’m looking to have a good time and keep the party going.”

Beyond that came a quick glimpse at the vulnerability that every artist holds, he warned me ahead of time that he doesn’t consider himself a lyricist but rather a rapper who possesses a vibe. With that in mind I began listening to his album not knowing entirely what to expect. From the very first track, Sleez sets up a familiar sound that almost feels like a throwback to the 90’s sonically, but its his sense of humor and blatant jabs that keep your attention. Much like a stand up comedian, K. Sleez has so many punchlines that made me laugh I found myself repeating the first 4 tracks at least 10 times before I forced myself to listen to the rest.

“Wannabe A Star” was a surprise as it shows Sleez’s ability to relate on a deeper level than most would anticipate. The rhymes about needing to make it and doing it the right way as your surrounded by a bunch of people who only aim for the overnight fame really came through. “Lord Save Me” is without a doubt my favorite track on the entire album as Sleez’s perspective and conviction really come together, and ultimately disprove his warped idea that he’s not a lyricist. Beyond just the words, the ability to connect and accurately convey a message are an intricate part of being an emcee with staying power and this track shows it.

It doesn’t stay heavy though, immediately following “Lord Save Me” comes an array of tracks that highlight K. Sleez’s love and appreciation for the cannabis culture and is a great addition to anyone who decides to partake in being connoisseur of the plant. It’s these tracks that line up perfectly with what makes the West Coast what it is, it is also on this part of the album that his flow really hits a zone. From the song “Follower” to the closing track “Losing My Mind,” he finds a rhythm that just consistently lands in the right pockets making the closing tracks just a memorable as the first.

Overall, “It Ain’t EZ Being Sleezy” is one of the few albums I find myself playing all the way through as every track is enjoyable to the ear, but the amount of quotable lines is something else. Given the opportunity, you should check out just a few of his tracks and from there I dare anyone to say he’s not a force to be reckoned with while still holding a straight face.

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