Work and the New Middle Class is a commemoration of my commitment to self-employment. It was made out of a combination of enthusiasm, ambition, terror, and uneasiness: all the qualities present in people who decide to quit their day jobs in pursuit of passion. Seriously, I talk about the lack of insurance, the diet (pasta and cereal), cabin fever, financial instability — all of it. Fortunately the beats I chose encourage head-nodding, otherwise this might sound like a pretty bleak tape. It’s definitely bump-able though. A quick anecdote: I performed the lyrics to Still the Same at an open mic at New Day Church in the Bronx. One of the attendees approached me after the show and told me that the lyrics captured the experience she had with her friends and family after her brain surgery. She sensed that they were treating her differently, and she kept reminding them that she was still the same, despite any perceived differences. It was an encouraging reminder of the ability of these songs to connect with people, and it strengthened my commitment to expressive, honest lyricism.