Former NFL player, rapper & author talks life in the spotlight with book: ‘The Art of Self-Love’
Former NFL star, rapper, and author Earl Boykins talks about his new book, The Art of Living with Self-Discovery, and his time on the road with The Beastie Boys.
In the new book published by Hachette, Boykins takes on the art of living with self-discovery and shares the secrets behind his “soul on the page” style of poetry and storytelling.
“The Art is the Book,” the book reads.
“If you’re living your life with selflessness and self-love, you’ll find yourself doing something amazing.”
Boykins says he’s often told that he’s the only rapper who could make money off the success of The Beasties.
But, he says, “You don’t have to be a genius to do this.”
He shares some of his favorite quotes from his book:The Beastie Boy: “You ain’t never met a black man who didn’t know it was wrong to kill a black person.
You ain’t ever met a white man who wasn’t afraid of being black.
And I’m saying it for the black people who aren’t scared, and for the white people who are scared.”
A Tribe Called Quest: “We’re not talking about a single album here.
You’re not going to hear a single track from this album about a white person.”
Raps like “Black Boyz,” “Black Panther” and “Don’t Stop Believin'” are featured on the album.
The Beast, who died in March at the age of 76, is remembered for creating hip-hop’s most influential group, The Beast.
The book also includes interviews with people from different backgrounds and races, including the author’s grandmother, whose life is told through a portrait of a black mother.
Boykins also offers insight into his early childhood, his struggle with alcoholism and depression, and the challenges he faced growing up in a predominately black community.
“I never had a good teacher, never had anybody who would do my homework,” Boykins says of his upbringing in Cleveland.
“I had to read my dad books all the time.
I had to work with my mom.
My dad worked as a nurse and I was never allowed to read.
I was taught to think for myself.”
It’s a different story with the people he met along the way, he adds.
“When I first moved here in Cleveland, I was the son of a single mother.
There was nothing for me to do.
My mom had been dead for two years and I grew up thinking I was going to be like my father.
I just wasn’t doing well, I never had good grades, and I had trouble paying my bills.
So I decided to do what my dad did and go to college.
So when I came to Cleveland, they had my books.
They were just sitting on the shelves, but I didn’t understand them.
It was like, ‘What’s that?’
I was like ‘Mom, these are my books.'”
The book ends with Boykins giving a tour of his hometown of Cleveland.
He describes it as a “tremendous, amazing city” and points out how much people have embraced him as an artist.
“It’s amazing how people come out to see my book.
They’re just like, wow, I’ve never seen anything like this.
It’s incredible,” he says.
“There are so many things that have happened to me over the last few years that are like, this is amazing.”
The book is also available on Amazon and other bookstores.