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Chops is a producer with over a decade in the industry and has worked with everyone from Kanye West to The Lonely Island. Recently, he announced a compilation album called Strength in Numbers featuring over 30 of the best Asian American artists in the game right now. Sure, it’s an effort to spotlight the talent within our community but really, it’s a readymade survival kit to navigate through everyday life and extreme situations. I know this because Chops is a founding member of #SAFEBOYZ, a humanitarian and benevolent effort to remove you and your homies from harm’s reach. So I reached out to the big homie and asked him how he would (read: YOU should) navigate six situations using the tracks from Strength in Numbers.

Rescuing Kittens from a Burning Building

The perfect song for rescuing kittens from a burning building is Ann One’s “Come Go With Me”, I’m glad you gave that scenario because it’s actually the real song topic, even though on the surface it sounds like a love song. It’s like Common’s “I Used To Love H.E.R.” but instead of being about hip-hop, it’s about little helpless kittycats. And her voice would calm the poor kitties while cradling them, covering them with a musical blanket to keep them safe from the flames, and from smoke inhalation. You know how some producers say they see colors when they hear music? I saw a saucer of milk when I made this track, bro. And when Ann goes “Oh, uh, uh ohhh” in the hook, it’s letting the kittens know if they spill a little bit of milky-milk, it’s ok.

Stranded on an Island

If I was stranded on an island I would play “Oh Yeah” by J-Key, Hoya, and #SAFEBOYZ co-founder as well as Gumship head muckety-muck Rekstizzy. The hook goes “Oh yeah, now you know, cotdamn, it’s kinda cold” which is helpful because on an island you don’t have Accuweather. The trumpets in the beat are like drum and bugle corps for soldiers, to let fools know it’s about to get military up in here. And then it goes “what these other cats doin man, iono, this town ain’t big enough kid you gotta go” which is informing all island inhabitants (pets and children too) they’re about to get verbally colonized and exploited. Or maybe colonically irrigated. With New York raps.

Bear Attack in the Woods

For a bear attack in the woods I would definitely play “U Not My Girl” by the Yellow Boyz. For some reason, bears and certain other animals really dig me, but especially bears. I’d use the song to let the female bears in my life know the deal. Like, Mama Bear we’re having fun here in these woods, it’s a good time for both of us, and it is special, but sooner or later I got to get back to civilization with other humans, baby. This is not a long term thing so don’t be trippin and attacking me and stuff. You knew what this relationship was from the jump!

Escape from a Haunted House

My song for escaping a haunted house would be Dumbfoundead and Paul Kim’s “No Turning Back”. The main advice I have for somebody in a haunted house is to get the fuck out, and don’t turn back. Be quick thinking like DFD, assess and do what’s right for the situation, which in this case means leave. Whenever you see somebody die in a haunted house movie, it’s because they stayed in the house. Or worse, they forgot something, like a sentimental trinket, and went back to go get it. Paul is reminding you firmly but with care, no motherfucker, don’t turn back. Fuck the trinket! Get a new one. It’s probably the trinket that’s haunted anyway, and you’re bringing the evil spirits with you to the new location.

Holding in a Shit with a Long Ways to Go

The song you should play when holding in a shit with a long ways to go… I’d pick Hopie and Erika David’s “Mission”. First of all you would be on a mission to not poop yourself, which is a very serious situation. When I lived in West Philly we only had one bathroom, which my roommate hogged up, and I had to drop deuce in a box one time. Both Hopie and Erika’s voices are real dope and would keep your attention sonically, and with visual imagery and melody, so you’re not thinking about your impending situation. By the time the song is done, you’ll be happy you made it to the final stage of your journey, like Dora the Explorer. Lo hicimos! We did it!

Zombie Apocalypse

For a zombie apocalypse I would pick Nikko Dator and Joanlee “All About Mine”. I’m a nice guy, I like supporting friends and stuff, I love community, that’s what the Strength In NUMBERS project is about… but I’ve seen the Walking Dead and if it gets that real, I’m gonna be all about mine, strictly. Family (well, certain family) and the small handful of people you can really trust, who really look out. Plus the track itself, and the energy from Nikko’s rhymes and Joanlee’s anthem-type hook, makes good background music for pushing a broom handle through the eye socket of your homie who rose from the dead, and is trying to eat you.

There you have it. Make sure you support the Kickstarter for Strength in Numbers here. Let us know if this survival guide was helpful to you or if you’d like to see anymore situations. Also, follow Gumship on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram for updates on more great features. Lastly but most importantly, stay safe. #SAFEBOYZ

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founded Gumship in 2012 to document the Asian American experience through culture, lifestyle and entertainment. When he's not blogging, he creates music as the rapper Rekstizzy. Hobbies include ramen, fried chicken, and pizza. If he could eat all three at the same time, the joy in his heart would cause him to levitate off the floor in a spiral motion.