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Write-Up: Disconnecting the Dots (Eddie Savoy Bailey)
K-Shine is on a roll this year. After teaming up with NWX and forming a battle rap duo with DNA, his career has soared to new heights. A while ago we thought of Shine as the mouthy, pop-off-at-any-moment, Scrappy of the Dot Mob kennel. Always quick to jump in someone’s face when defending his honor like in that unforgettable trash talking video with Tsu Surf a few years back. He was always impressive with his aggressive approach to battling but he always seemed to fall under the shadow of Murda Mook and T-Rex’s legacies as a postscript – like, p.s., Shine is also here with us and he raps, too. Being on an intermediate level in the food chain was never an intentional slight to Shine’s talent, it’s just that in the familial nature of his relationship with Dot Mob, that endears its members as family rather than rap-friends, the order of things is big brother then little brother.
The legendary Dot Mob, as founding member T-Rex would so eloquently put it, is by many accounts, the most dangerous crew in battle rap history. They are not large in numbers like Team Homi – Dot Mob only has six active members. With Murda Mook at the helm, T-Rex, K-Shine, Tay Roc, Daylyt, and D.O T., four out of the six members are on every major card, from URL, to KOTD, to RBE. Not only that, but four, maybe even five out of the six can easily be in your top five at any given time. T-Rex has appeared on all five Summer Madness events, a feat that only has been accomplished by him. However, beneath the surface Rex is probably the most polarizing figure in Dot Mob.
Murda Mook & T-Rex
Murda Mook & T-Rex (courtesy of Zimbio.com)
Pulled from under the veil of Murda Mook’s celebrity is the backbone of Dot Mob, T-Rex. Truthfully, if it weren’t for him we would have forgotten about this crew a long time ago. After Mook said he was retiring a few years ago, Rex kept the name alive at a time when battle rap legends were hanging up their boots in pursuit of more lucrative endeavors. At every event he’d incorporate “Dot Mob” in his battles. When battle rappers used to make their own blogs their Rex was reminding us who was the dominant crew. When Mook was out of the picture Rex was the HNIC and ran a tight ship. He helped scout new prospects like Shine, Roc, and Daylyt, but of all the newer members his bond with K-Shine stands out.
Rex has known Shine since he was eight or nine years old, they are both from Harlem and share a lot of the same personality traits, and they used to even finish each others lines in battles. It’s obvious from Rex’s brotherly displays of embrace that him and Shine are close like Tango & Cash or even Mike Lowrey and Marcus’ friendship in Bad Boys. To put it plain, 3 Letterman said in a blog about his assessment of Rex and Shine’s relationship, that Rex wouldn’t have felt as slighted by a departure from other crew members like Roc or Daylyt because its not like he knew them for half of their lives.
K-Shine joining NWX was a risky move because of the history that T-Rex has with some of their members, namely, Big-T. It leaves K-Shine in a precarious position to straddle the fence, pledging his allegiance to NWX while still screaming Dot Mob. Now that the lines between friend and foe have become ambiguous you are uncharacteristically seeing members from Dot Mob like Tay Roc lash out publicly at Shine. It makes you wonder what’s beneath the surface because Shine would’ve had to leave unceremoniously in order to team up with the competition, right?
Rex’s feelings about Shine’s decision to join forces with NWX became clear when Heavy Bags interviewed him on 15 Minutes of Fame. Rex appeared a bit foggy and caught off guard by Shine’s move. He couldn’t honestly say whether Shine was still apart of Dot Mob or not. “I talked to Shine for the first time in a long time. He say he a Dot forever but his movements is looking different,” Rex bewilderedly said. He was obviously hurt and confused, and to be fair I can understand why. The way Rex views loyalty is the way guys from the streets view their loyalty to the game – till death do us part, and anything below that decree is blasphemous.
Here’s where it gets interesting because this is where Rex’s version of loyalty doesn’t mix with Shine wanting to grow. You can’t meet the apex of your potential and be expected to live out the ordinances of that kind of loyalty. Its rigidity binds your growth with its many restrictions. A couple of years ago Shine’s career plateaued. It seemed as though he had peaked too soon and the best of Shine was over. Since he’s been with NWX his career has made a resurgence, his skill level has evolved, and more importantly, he’s not in Rex’s shadow anymore.
According to Rex, in that same interview he said, “Dot Mob would do so much for you. How could you even think about ever trying to go do anything else when there is nothing we wouldn’t do for you?” Rex is absolutely right about one thing. He would do anything for Shine or any other member in Dot Mob because that’s who he is. He’s so much like that that he prizes Shine as his possession. He proudly said in the interview that he raised Shine. The subtext in that statement is – that’s my son. It seems as though one of the problems with these two is that the nature of their relationship never changed. K-Shine is not eight years old anymore. He has developed his own vision, with bigger ambitions and broader dreams, that he naturally wants to explore. K-Shine is a young man now, and you can’t continue to son a man.
Vintage Dot Mob – The Bad Guyz (when Dot Mob was Dot Mob)
© Copyright Eddie Savoy Bailey III, 2015 Written by: Eddie Bailey of The Savoy Media Group Twitter @SavoyMediaGroup