I am King Comeback a rapper and songwriter from Atlanta, GA. I was paralyzed when I was shot during an attempted robbery during June of 2012. Since then I have been rehabilitated, went on to finish school, start a company, and am currently working on a career as a musician and motivational speaker.
Adapt or Die
“Survival of the fittest,” “Only the strong survive.” Two phrases that capture the stark reality of natural selection. Organisms must become adapted to survive in their environment or they will die out, bottom line. The only other recourse is to move to areas more suited to their existence, their niche. The same can be said for living with a spinal cord injury (SCI).
Notwithstanding, we still have places to go, people to see, and accomplishments to achieve. Being disabled does not mean that you don’t have the same right to happiness, comfort, and love as others. You have a duty just like anybody else to survive and thrive. The challenge as with any other organism is always how you are going to make these things happen for yourself. You will either have to adapt to your surroundings, move to those more hospitable, or die trying.
One may ask, “What does this look like for a musician that is paraplegic?” For me this meant adapting my thinking as to how I would record and perform my music. Unable to get into most recording booths and/or bathrooms, I built a studio at home. It featured the same equipment and software used in professional studios. Being able to jump around on stage or even get up on most of them without help, I had to adapt my stage presence and even my thinking as far as what platforms I should appear on. I had to adapt to my situation or let my dreams as a musician die.
The music industry is vicious and highly selective as it is. I have not seen any successful mainstream rappers that are also paralyzed; I would be the first. I could be discouraged by the overwhelming odds against me or I could use the fact that I do have paralysis and the story behind it to my benefit.
In an industry where millions of people with more or less the same skills are competing for very limited opportunities, anything that makes you unique only helps and I had what most rappers don’t have, a spinal cord injury. A lot rappers talk about committing acts of gun violence but most have never done or survived from it it.
I’m using my music to share my story and bring awareness to gun violence and people with disabilities. This is giving a voice for people you don’t see in the media everyday and often times don’t get the attention they deserve. In any case, the path to the top in the music industry or even the corporate ladder may not be as wheelchair accessible right now. In either tract, I find it’s hard to get people to listen or want to, but you have to make them.
You have to make it so that people don’t have a choice but to see your face, hear your voice, and enjoy your work, whatever it may be. We live in a digital age where an online presence is tantamount to being seen mainstream media outlets. With the advent of streaming services, one could get a start and even make a decent living as a recording artist and even mechanical engineer right at home. This is what I had to do to make a name and create opportunities for myself.
How bad do you want whatever it is you’re after in life? Are you willing to let your dreams or yourself as a person die due to a disability? I am here to tell you (probably for the hundredth time) that your life is not over and it is what you make of it! Had I waited until I walk again to start a career as a musician, I would still be waiting.
The world would lose out on some great music and an even better story. Everybody, disabled or not, has challenges and obstacles to overcome. It is those who are able to adapt their thinking that find their place, or niche, in the world and thrive. How does this apply to you?
What do you have to offer the world? What’s keeping you from sharing your greatness the rest of us? Now can you adapt your thinking to make the most out of your situation? Remember: Adapt or Die.
Follow King Comeback on IG @comebackgawd
This Article was written by King Comeback, a musician and motivational speaker. King is currently working n his debut Album “The DEMOnstration” which is set to be released this November. He is a graduate of Kennesaw State University’s Mechanical Engineering program. The King loves to create and inspire others to be great. You can find him on all social media platforms @comebackGawd. You can find his music on all streaming platforms and Trackblazers.net/kingcomeback