BIOGRAPHY

The Story So Far…..

IMG_0199It is said that the birth of one particular child in Newport in the 1970s forced the closure of the maternity hospital that very night. Locals still talk about the screams, the freak midsummer thunderstorm which deluged the hospital with golden rain, the blinding light emitting from the windows of the ward at the very moment of birth and the nurses and orderlies who to this very day refuse to talk about what happened in there, at least the ones who are not themselves now confined to the many lunatic asylums that made brisk business after that fateful night.

With his family forced into exile into the frozen northern wasteland of Great Britain, the young Mink-C sat alone crafting lyrics and stories, rhyming them aloud over Boney-M and Hot Chocolate records, recording the results on his fathers small mono tape recorder. Things were hard for the family, Mink’s mother was trying to make ends meet in an office job, whilst his father resorted to pimping the local women, utilising local farmers goodwill to provide facilities for any businessmen who happened to be passing through. This brought a new meaning to the term ‘stable of bitches’, as alas in this case it was not just a turn of phrase.

At school, Mink was a loner, a drifter and generally disliked by the other children who were frightened at his well formed physique, and his prediliction to respond to anything with a vicious, well honed rhyme. It was around this time that following a letter written to Kool Herc, where Mink criticised his contribution to Hip-Hop culture, that he found himself on a plane heading to JFK for an emergency meeting with the popular local event promoter. Throwing the idea of a ‘block party’ out there, Mink was surprised when Herc took up the idea and before anyone knew it, Mink was grabbing a microphone and reciting some bars in front of a perplexed South Bronx audience. Who was this strange looking white kid with his rhymes about ‘dissing hookers’ and ‘slapping bitches’. He was laughed off the stage, but this had given them an idea and before long local rappers were emerging performing what was essentially a watered down version of Mink’s rhymes. The golden age of Hip-Hop was a mere seedling at this time, and no-one now acknowledges the contribution the young welshman made, even Kool Herc, who in a recent interview with ‘The Source’ magazine said “I have no idea who you are fucking talking about”. This lack of acknowledgement didn’t curtail the Mink, who headed back to the UK with new ideas and a drive to succeed.

Years went by, and Mink had completed the cursory schooling he had received in the British education system. His real schooling had been pouring over every Hip-Hop publication, every rap record released and the books of rhymes he created. These books of rhymes at one point reached such numbers that it was no longer practical to keep them at the family home. Instead, his fathers old ‘stable’ which were by this time a series of large warehouse-sized outbuildings adjacent to the local farm, were the place where the thousands of hand-written rhyme books were stored, stacked several hundred deep and requiring an enormous amount of shelving creating which kept local timber merchants in business during a particularly lean period. Sadly, the books of rhymes which some say would have rivalled Shakespeare for their contribution to modern literary history, were destroyed. No one entirely knows what happened, but a group of villagers reported a group of masked men with american accents carrying burning torches towards the ‘stable’, they were wearing New York bomber jackets, had gold chains and one was heard to say to the other two “Mel, Herc? Shall I torch this motherfucker then?”. Who they could be is still a mystery….

It was the last straw for the young Mink. He moved into the more civilised midlands, still banished from moving permanently back to Newport for fear of ‘that night in the 70s’ amongst townsfolk, and made some tapes under the name “The 12 Gague Confederacy” with his partner-in-crime Lionel-Beee, a fellow Hip-Hop enthusiast he met in school and who had himself been raised by local pimps after his entire family were convicted of a variety of gun and drug crimes (his mother often used to load the family car up with weapons and travel from the country to the local city, to single handedly rob the drug kingpins of the area. This went well until the police caught her unloading several rounds from a Desert Eagle into a plain clothed policeman working undercover for the drug gang). Lionel was the ying to Minks yang, and they achieved mixed success with their music, despite a number of national music magazines heralding the tapes as ‘the music you wish your favorite artist would make’. These proclamations were mysteriously ommitted from the final printed copy, which only spurred the dynamic duo on to continue.

The constant back-biting from the media  and inability to secure a major record deal (it is often rumoured that EMI had signed the duo, only for them to show up for the signing drunk, and exposing themselves to female staff at the label headquarters rendering the signing cancelled), forced the pair into Hip-Hop wilderness for a number of years. When they emerged, in the mid 2000’s, the pair were older, wiser but also happy to record when it suited them and not pander to the whims of the dribbling masses. Their group, now called ‘The Black Gestapo’ continued with occasional recording whilst Mink-C embarked on a solo career which glittered from one glorious recording to the other. Putting his work out on the internet for free, he felt free for the first time in his life. Using the web, his songs were now truly global and even Kool Herc’s grand children were heard blasting songs like “The Welsh Boy Wonder” and “Miserable Cunts” from their apartment windows. The circle was truly formed, and despite taking a hiatus in the latter part of the decade, Mink has decided to return and who knows what the next chapter of this remarkable story will bring…..