Houston Music

Look at What One of Our Writers Has Gone and Done

Provided they're not making us wish them bodily harm (kidding), Rocks Off is proud of each and every one of our writers. But sometimes one of them up and does something that makes us give them an extra pat on the head and a biscuit to go along with it. Like right now.

The writer in question is our own Shea Serrano, who has tirelessly covered rap, hip-hop and about every other kind of music that can be found in the 713 and 832 area codes (sometimes 409, 979 and 512 too) since 2008, and now writes for L.A. Weekly, Grantland, MTV.com and a bunch of other fancy places in addition to lil' ol' Rocks Off.

Last week Serrano put up a Tumblr called -- strangely enough -- rapcoloringbook.tumblr.com. In summary, it is exactly that, black-and-white pictures of rappers that are meant to be colored, drawn by Serrano, officially titled "Bun B's Jumbo Coloring and Rap Activity Tumblr" and "curated" by the Gulf Coast hip-hop eminence himself.

Obviously we couldn't let this go by unremarked, so we sent Serrano a bunch of questions to find out exactly what the hell was going on, which usually happens in a much different context. Ha ha.

Rocks Off: The idea for a rap coloring book originally had something to do with your sons, correct?

Shea Serrano: Affirmative. The boys and I were working in some coloring books back around February or March. And, I mean, I love spending time with them, but that was boring as shit.

So I made us some better coloring books, ones that were cartoons of some of our favorite local rappers; guys like Slim Thug and Paul Wall and Hoodstar Chantz and Trae and Authentic Snoopy and Propain and Delo and guys like that. It was way more interesting for me, and the exact same for them, so I guess that's good enough.

RO: And what does the mother of these sons think about all of this?

SS: This was back before the boys started kindergarten, so I suspect she was just glad to have nine or ten minutes where she wasn't answering a question or cooking a meal.

RO: I would imagine that some parents could be uncomfortable with their kids coloring the likes of Dr. Dre and Tupac. What would you say to those people?

SS: I'd say they're right. This isn't for kids, it's for rap fans. There are a few curse words in there, and some of the pages have some less-than-wholesome images included. I probably wouldn't recommend it to anyone that wasn't at least a teenager.

Unless it's for a kid that's not yours, in which case you should definitely give it to them.

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Chris Gray has been Music Editor for the Houston Press since 2008. He is the proud father of a Beatles-loving toddler named Oliver.
Contact: Chris Gray