From Ricc48 to 48 Forty: 48 Forty's Inspiring Comeback After The Crash.
• So I figured we’d just jump right into it, what the hell happened?
A little over a year ago, I got in a serious car accident, that put me in a comatose state with severe brain bleeding. I was in the ICU on a ventilator and when my family was contacted they were told that I had been in a crash, flown out of the windshield, had a seizure, I was unable to breathe on my own and had severe bleeding of the brain. The doctors said IF I woke up I was bound to be majorly altered (paralyzed, unable to speak, etc).
A couple days later I woke up miraculously, but still unable to walk, talk or remember anything at all (including who I was), and nobody knew if I ever would again. With God and time I was able to move again, I was able to speak again, but I couldnt remember anything. I knew who I was but didnt know anything about myself.
I’ve regained around 70% of my memory. The things I can’t remember vary from random childhood memories & people i “know” - to just small day to day shit. I’m still technically mid recovery but I was blessed enough to keep all of my bodily functions, and I’m just waiting on my brain to heal completely.
Today, is the 488th day since I left the hospital, and it’s finally time I properly speak on this miracle of an experience.
• Can you share some insights into the recovery process and how it has influenced your day-to-day life.
It changed my life completely. Nothing is the same. Shìt is crazy actually. It’s hard to explain what recovering from a brain injury even looks like because I barely can remember and oftenly forget stuff. Basic functions and skills I lost. Things like my ability to comprehend, multitask, drive, rap, remember, walk without falling. I can’t list em all this would go on forever. Everyday is like I’m lost within myself tryna find my way out. They say it’s gonna be a long time until my brain is fully recovered but I’m faithful.
• Have there been any specific challenges you've faced in returning to your routine, and how have you overcome them?
Yeah. For the most part I had to learn to redo everything I do. Musically, I kind of forgot who Ricc48 was, which played a big part in my name change. Coming out of the coma I didn’t even remember I made music. The slight music memories I did have came from my tattoos, and over time how I make music came back to me, but my voice was completely shattered. Before all this I never used to record myself at home, this put me in a position where I had too. Dawg I spent hours and hours recording, sun up to sun down. Every single day. Eventually I overcame, now I’m here. Exactly 488 days later, I’m picking up where I left off.
• How has the accident influenced your approach to creating music, if at all?
I have a new perspective that I’m able to create from. I’m supposed to be dead, and the fact that I’m here forces me to shed light on that. The doctors told my moms I might not live and if I did I’d be paralyzed. Life itself influences me now, as unorthodox as that sounds. That changed my entire approach. Made me more vulnerable, more appreciative of what I’m capable of creating, more understanding and overall made me a better artist. That crash fucked my entire life, but crazily enough I got some positives from it.
• In what ways has the experience shaped your lyrics and the themes in your recent work?
Again, perspective. Recovering from this opened my eyes to a whole new world of people that stand in what I stand in: being misunderstood. My whole life I’ve felt misunderstood, and this journey majorly falls in line with that feeling. So many people don’t properly understand the toll this has had on me, how easy I could forget something or even how I might not even remember who they are but I know it’s because on the outside everything seems so normal still, so I never take it personal. Experiencing shit like that in my day to day life helped me to understand these new found people more than I already thought I did. My purpose with this music shit now is to speak for the people like me, and create sounds that make “us” feel heard and all of my recent work aims to embody that.
• Have there been challenges in terms of your physical capabilities impacting your music-making process, and how have you adapted?
There’s a lot bro, but over time it has gotten better. It took about 4 months before I was able to record again and it was all a learning game on what I could and couldn’t do. My biggest obstacle was definitely finding my voice again, at the beginning my vocal had this rasp to it that I couldn’t get rid of so I just rocked with it - anything that comes I just accept and work on correcting it as I go forward. I think it’s easier to accept the “change” because so much I don’t remember, it all just feels new to me and I’m grateful for that, I’d rather learn to do something a first time than feel like I’m relearning it, which again is just my perspective.
• Can you share any moments of clarity or creativity that emerged as a result of your recovery journey?
Definitely - the biggest one for me is creatively is actually something that continues to happen. Often times throughout this I’ve recorded songs and due to me forgetting, I ended up recording them again, but on a different beat with a totally different sound. I told my team if they notice me doing this, to just let me and tell me after it’s done because sometimes the new version is better. I made in my opinion my best song EVER doing this, and it basically was all a mistake due to this whole situation.
• What can your fans expect from your upcoming music, both in terms of themes and sound?
Sonically my goal has always been to impress on a high level, anybody that listens to me I feel would agree that I normally come through on that end, but I’ve never been as vulnerable as I should be. Vulnerability is what I think will be my ticket out of here. The magnitude of connecting with somebody emotionally/making them feel heard by hearing my music is major and any listener of mine should expect that at an all time high. This new music really makes you feel like you know me, and that’s what I want. If I had to classify it under a theme I’d say the same thing: Vulnerability, but the way I see it: that doesn’t even classify as a theme, I’m just being me and doing so at a very exposed level.
• Are there any specific projects or collaborations you're excited about that have been influenced by your recent experiences?
I have some project ideas in mind definitely, but my main goal at the moment is singles - I just dropped 5 singles that were originally a project but we decided it’d be digested better if they all stood alone. All of these songs are from my recovery journey, starting with the very first one I did after the crash. Every song is representation of what I’ve gone through / what I’m going through. I’ll be dropping every 1-2 weeks to get them all out as fast as I can.
• Who or what has been a source of inspiration or support for you during this challenging period?
God. I’m alive bro, every time I hear about what the doctors thought would happen to me I realized that this is truly a miracle. To be here, have all my functions and still be able to chase my dream is unbelievable. I thank god for aiding me through this, and I thank everybody in my inner circle that stuck by me. This has been the hardest period of time for all of us, and as far in recovery as I still have to go just getting to this point is high level shit to me.
• How do you believe your fans and the larger community have contributed to your recovery, both emotionally and creatively?
I considered giving it all up, I was in this mindset where I felt like it would be way to hard to pick back up, I doubted myself. Then randomly one day I get a DM about how my situation inspired a entire family and gave them faith in a similar situation they were experiencing. That shit still gives me chills, immediately I saw things clearer. I realized the story of me surviving something like this could do good for so many people and that I had to tell it. This kept happening. I kept getting DMs from people telling me similar stuff/what my music was doing for them. I’m grateful for that, when I think about it it’s crazy I ever thought for a second about dropping what I love but it’s dope that the people that do intake my content are receiving something positive from it, and the wildest part to me is that I had only made ONE post about what happened at this point and all my songs were over a year old. That whole thing showed me that what I want to become is still attainable, I just gotta hit the gas and this time around the story is heavier, hits harder, and connects more.