UK Producer/Artist Configa pays tribute to late and gifted hip-hop artist “John Vietnam” with new video and single “What’s Your Story?/Be Like That”. John Vietnam was a talented Hip Hop Artist based out of Chicago and of Vietnamese Origin, who left the world before his prime at the age of 19. John Vietnam died in an apparent drowning incident in Madison, Wisconsin in August 30, 2012 as he was just about to start his sophomore year at The University of Wisconsin-Madison.At the University of Wisconsin-Madison, he was a main feature of the First Wave Spoken Word and Hip Hop Learning Community, which is a multicultural artistic program.Nine days before his death, Nguyen performed at the 17th Annual Chicago Korean Festival which would be his last public spoken word performance. He uploaded the performance to YouTube, with this description: “As I aspire to reach more people with my words … I hope to expand; I want my bars to go further than Chiago.”Early on the morning of Aug. 30, 2012 John and four friends headed over to Madison’s Lake Mendota to go swimming and watch the sunrise, John’s sister Kim said. While in the water, one of John Nguyen’s friends reportedly panicked and John quickly came to her aid, according to his sister. Friends told the family he thrust his friend onto the dock but then went under the water himself. When he failed to surface, friends called 911.The university says Madison Fire Department’s Lake Rescue Team was called to the area, where divers performed a search and found John Vietnam within 15 minutes.In a note he sent home from college during his freshman year, John Vietnam, wrote:”Hip-hop isn’t just something you do, it’s the way you live. Emceeing, or, rapping, isn’t just a hobby. The values engrained in hip-hop emerge in your behavior and attitude outside of the cypher or song. It’s all about peace, love, unity, and having fun. Emceeing is a way to cope with problems in life; art is a result of suffering. Eventually, with enough practice and inspiration, your art becomes something people relate to, because we all go through the same problems. You learn how to be a leader, not just when you’re spitting, but when those crucial moments arise in life where you just need to step up. An emcee doesn’t just spit, he has the hip-hop culture embedded in his genes. An emcee wouldn’t sit back and ignore the problem. Tackle it directly. Emcees should look at grades like the cypher. Get in there, do your thing the way it should be done, and come out knowing you did it right.Keep doing you, and tell your story. No gimmicks.”Configa continually expresses the honor in collaborating with John Vietnam, in which SLAM Worldwide proudly presents “What’s Your Story?/Be Like That” (Featured on Configaration Volume 1). The Video is done in documentary form and sheds a unique light on who John Vietnam was. John was a shining star within the Asian Community as well as within Hip Hop in which he is sorely missed.
The Evolvolution Initiative and The City of Los Angeles Educational Partnership (powered by Supernatural INC)