My handle’s Curly Castro. I’m an emcee. What you’d call your “friendly neighborhood rebel.” Love both the smoke of a Molotov cocktail and a finely rolled, phantom filled leaf. Your favorite rapper’s favorite rabble-rouser. Nat Turner incarnate. Peter Tosh acolyte. Lightning in a cracked bottle.
I was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, but I now reside in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
I speak for the people; I rhyme for my Wrecking Crew; I banshee for myself. I’m a full-time artist, part-time human.
I started rapping in the late 90s, when the streets of rap were paved with platinum and million dollar videos were commonplace. As you can see that’s not the case now. [laughs] All jokes (and reality) aside, I’m proud to have emerged from that era, and to of seen all the transformation and evolution since.
My first show ever was a triumphant disaster: I messed up my verse but played it off as best I could. The very next day we had another show in front of 40x the people the night prior, and I redeemed myself with a solid performance. I’ve never ever repeated that faux pas in any of my performances since. Only gotta learn me once… [laughs]
I want my voice and subsequent message to reach critical mass. Everyone that wants to unlock their enlightenment should give my sonics a listen—you just might unlearn something. I am an aboriginal educator. Imhotep would be proud of his progeny.
A sense of immense self-worth and racial pride. I’m very proud of my African diaspora and the roots bore of that. I want people to look at my sound and I as leaders. Much like the late, great Peter Tosh and the impervious Fidel Castro (my namesake).
Some of the pioneers of my time: Charles Mingus, Nas, Wu-Tang, Biggie, Bob Marley, Aesop Rock, Portishead, El-P, Peter Tosh, Juggaknots, Thelonius Monk…the list’s enormous. My personal list is shorter: my mother, my Wrecking Crew brethren (Zilla Rocca, Has-Lo and Small Professor). The rebels that came before me: Harriet Tubman, Denmark Vesey, Nat Turner, Gabriel Prosser, Malcolm X, Marcus Garvey, Medgar Evers, Black Panther Party, Black Arts Movement, Universal Zulu Nation and so on and so forth.
Besides the plight of my people and the upbringing of our lost generation…a song, at times, will drive me to intense insomnia—like I can’t stop writing until I reach the finish line (pun intended). It’s what us songwriters do.
After FIDEL, a multitude of works: I’m cultivating an LP with the legendary Fakts One, I have a high-concept EP with Zilla Rocca, another LP with Man Bites Dog Records (my label) in the fall and, of course, more Wrecking Crew madness. Stay tuned to the static; the beautiful chaos only gets worse from here on in.