Abdominal – Courage ft. My Mom [Video]
Toronto, ON – As hip-hop heads across the country partake in Mother’s Day festivities, Torontonian rapper Andy “Abdominal” Bernstein shows his appreciation by sharing the stage with his mom, Sharon. Abdominal and his mother collaborated for the track “Courage” on Sitting Music and the video release party is going down today at The Mascot (1267 Queen St. W) at 3 p.m. HipHopCanada caught up with Bernstein to find out about his Mother’s Day plans, evolving musical style, and, of course, his courageous MC mother. Check out the video after the jump.
The video shows Abdominal – obviously a momma’s boy – riding shotgun in a motorcycle next to his mom. The track boasts Sharon’s success in marathon running, belly dancing, kick-boxing, working with Inuit in the Arctic, and more: “My mom’s 61. And over the last few years, well, here’s some shit she’s done.” Though Abdominal has been in the hip-hop game for more than 15 years, he admits that his sound has evolved into its own niche. “Hip-hop has always been the music that I’ve made,” said Berstein. “If I want to write a song about bicycling, I’ll do that. If I want to write a song about my mom, I’ll do that.” When he sat down to plan out Sitting Music, there were two people he knew he had to collaborate with: Chali 2na of Jurassic 5 (who is featured on the album’s eighth track “Balance Both”), and his mom. “I called her up and I was like, ‘you wanna do a rap song, mom?'” said Bernstein. While Sharon was slightly skeptical of writing a rap verse, Abdominal encouraged her to draw from her experience as a poet and former English teacher to write “a poem to a beat.” The duo found that their common appreciation for each other’s courage was a great starting point for the track, and everything fell into place from there. “She really likes the word play,” said Bernstein.
Often described as middle-aged hip-hop, Abdominal’s tracks combine quirky anecdotes (spoiler alert: he used to be a cartoon artist and he’s Jewish) with atypical acoustic instrumentals and production. His style pushes the envelope on mainstream hip-hop, and could, potentially, bridge the music gap between the younger and older generations. Parental advisories notwithstanding, Abdominal could earn a big stamp of approval from moms across the country today with his post-adolescent reflections and symbiotic supportive relationship with momma-bear Sharon.
If you’re searching for that perfect last-minute gift for mom, Bernstein says that the best gift to give is the gift of conversation. “I’m not saying you have to go out and record a rap song with your mom. Instead of going all cliché—cards, flowers—just consider sharing what’s important in your life,” he said. Though Abdominal and his mom are joining forces for a day-long maternal extravaganza, the duo won’t be celebrating Mother’s Day until Monday. “I owe my mom because she’s doing the show for me so we’re going to wait until the following day [to celebrate Mother’s Day],” said Berstein. He plans to take Sharon out to The Hogtown Vegan (834 Bloor St. W) for some celebratory mother-loving vegetarian noshes— an extremely generous gift, considering Abdominal is a self-proclaimed carnivore.
So make sure to share the video for “Courage” with your own mom, download a copy of Sitting Music from BandCamp, and have yourself a very rappy Mother’s Day.
Photography courtesy of Pinwheel Music