Artist bio

L.E.X is a clean Hip-Hop artist, grief camp counselor, 4K teacher, school DJ, and much more. Using his music and love for teaching he’s received “AmeriCorps Member Of The Year” in the state of Wisconsin and “Most Impactful Member” for the country, while serving as a literacy tutor with AmeriCorps. His dream is to continue to teach all ages through his passionate music and poetry.

Title

Black Tears And Smiles

Artist Statement

This is “Black Tears And Smiles.” This is me. Direction inspired by quarantines happening all around the world, my incarcerated younger brother, and thousands suffering in solitary confinement while serving out their prison sentences. The goal was to show how quarantines can be difficult during these times, but people in prison have it much worse and we can’t forget about their identities being threatened.

How it fits into contest

“Getting close to my dreams because the man above is blessing me, and now I don’t just hope or doubt myself it’s an expectancy.” These are lines that stand out when I think about my spiritual battle. Throughout this song, I grapple with the hardships I’ve made it through, while also showing gratitude. Without my faith and God’s love, I have no armor to survive these many battles. One of the men I highlight in this song is my uncle. “Rest in peace Uncle Mike I’m sorry this world made you take drugs, shadow boxing demons that anxiously fight to take us.” This was important for me to mention because when we have our guards’ down, darkness is ready to attack. We have to stay grounded, faithful, and believers. We can’t be afraid to show our tears, and can’t let the bad take away our joy.

Credits

Alexis Dean: Lyricist, Music Performer, Director, Writer, Music Producer, Videographer, Editor, Costume Designer

How to Purchase this Artwork

“Black Tears And Smiles” is the title track for my album “Black Tears And Smiles” releasing April 17th on all streaming platforms.

Other Goods & Services Available from this Artist

Support my “Dreams Start Young” brand by purchasing school supplies and gear on DreamsStartYoung.threadless.com that can motivate yourself or others. Journals will eventually be used for all of my writing sessions with children, where I teach creative writing skills.

Transcript / Lyrics

(Verse 1)
Is it too much to ask for immortality
Just made it to the age I wish my dad could see
They took him away savagely
And since that night my paranoia has been ravaging
Looking up the life spans black men are averaging
Inside man I know this embarrassing
Like my fear of the dark, when I knew people would laugh at me
Cause like me they couldn’t understand the things that were happening

Yearly things got better, healing things that’s severed
But life doesn’t come with an on and off lever
It takes a lot of effort, to keep yourself together
I hope that you can find a way to have your growth measured

Thinking bout my step pops, you welcome every endeavor
I hope you’ve known, you’ve shown, God built inside you a treasure
I’m thankful for every lecture, I grew because of the nectar
You planted inside the words that I needed now and forever

That was best for me, I’m seeing now my destiny
Who knew that changing lives, after losing lives, would be best for me
Getting close to my dreams, because the man above is blessing me
And now I don’t just hope, or doubt myself, it’s an expectancy

But let’s go back to living forever, it’s on my wishlist
Because I don’t want to leave here, without finishing some business
Pouring confidence into the kids that’s labeled misfits
Lending every ear kids just need someone to listen

I don’t want to be Pac, Fred, Malcolm or another gone
And the topic on the next project an artist working on
Obsessively working to rebuild and make others strong
So I’m just hoping and praying that my life is super long

I could have all I want, but still, I will want more time
To keep shedding the light on those who want more shine
If that means more pain, strain, and more cryin’
I wouldn’t care man promise you I’ll be just fine
I know I’m

(Verse 2)
I had a kid ask me what I’m afraid of
Tell me why I was about to say love
And not having the things that I fill my day of
At that very moment I realized I love and hate love

Perspective is the key to the world, and your success story
Low self-esteem could’ve easily made a mess for me
I pray for you a life of less challenges and of less mourning
Learning my relationship with my dad ain’t end with death for me

Learning I can smile, but there’s some things in life I can’t shrug
And always stand up for myself, I’m here cause people ain’t budge
Rest In Peace uncle mike I’m sorry this world made you take drugs
Shadow boxing demons, that anxiously fight to take us

I’ve been through some things in my life I couldn’t make up
And lost a lot of valuable time I want to make up
I said a lot of things on this song, but the main stuff
Is life is about more than just struggling for a pay stub,
And I’m a black man with tears and smiles

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