Earlier this week, rapper Bushwick Bill died at the age of 52 from pancreatic cancer. He was a member of the legendary Houston rap group the Geto Boys. His death prompted remembrances from across the rap world – and many closer to home, too.
By day, Chris Conde is a music writer for the San Antonio Current, but by night he is an openly-queer rap artist. For ten years, Conde struggled with a drug addiction and homelessness. Rapping helped him process his emotions and eventually landed him a gig at South by Southwest, opening for Bushwick Bill.
Before the show, Conde says he was nervous that his sexuality would be a problem between the two artists.
“Right after I finish my set, I usually say something about how important it is to be, you know, visible as a member of the LGBTQ community because you know in spaces like hip hop, where it’s previously been so like homophobic and like uninclusive,” Conde says.
Instead, Bushwick Bill encouraged Conde to keep telling his story.
“That dude, he was rapping about his own life, his own experiences and I’m doing the same thing, you know? Somehow we found some real commonality,” Conde says.