Modern Day Griot

by J.Smo of BUNKS



Modern Day Griot is a 6 track EP produced by Tonedef tha Killa which serves as the precursor to J.Smo's full length solo album The Joshua Story. The topics, themes and events touched upon in these 6 tracks will be covered in more intimate detail in the songs included on the forthcoming album; providing more context and depth to the personality known as J.Smo.


released February 28, 2019

tracks 1-6 produced by Tonedef tha Killa
bonus track produced by Young Harm
artwork by Young Harm


all rights reserved



J.Smo of BUNKS Sacramento, California

BUNKS: Bringing Unmatched Noise Knowledge and Sound.

We are a hip hop collective from Manchester, Tennessee that has been releasing music since 1999. J.Smo is in Sacramento working with UL Sounds and MPC Recording Company. New and exclusive projects are released here first. ... more

contact / help

Contact J.Smo of BUNKS

Streaming and
Download help

Shipping and returns

Redeem code

Report this album or account

Track Name: Look What I Did
This that Appalachian, hillbilly, Tennessee flow
That sharecropper, servitude, a plot of my own
Organic, certified, we reap what we sow
Bury roots deep, build the system way below
Running moonshine on the dirt roads by moonlight
Moving big bricks, I-40, hit the turnpike
Praying to the gods that Metro don't see me
In my mom's car, beige Kia, I was speeding
Down a dark path, battled demons on my way
Skiing down a slope all my friends screaming yay!
The faster that you rise is the faster that you fall
Your friends become snitches, broken hearts, you have it all
I really loved the money but I had to walk away
The cops came knocking and the fun it did decay
They tore apart my house without a warrant what the fuck?!
A pawn in their game, they were hunting for the buck.
Track Name: Hells Bells
Step into the ring, Medellin when I sing
Pour these lines out on the table show you what I really mean
Raised in a time when we weighed on triple beams
Take a little portion then you triple up your cream
Do a little dirt just to build a life that's clean
That's the gritty truth about this American dream
Hide in plain sight, stay pure with your intent
Are you evil in your ways? or you just trying to pay the rent?
Lift it to the ceiling let them know how you feeling
Fists into the air let them know your heart's beating
Put the pressure on them let the forces start retreating
Power in unity, it's community we feeding
Flip the rage, take the stage, be the change that you seeking
Infiltrate the system, from inside you start beaming
Infect them like a virus, they never see you coming
By the time that they find you it's too late to start running

Hells bells...
It's time to bring it down
Hells bells...
It's time to ring them now

On the search for prophets with some profits they be sharing
You think you see it clearly but the truth it ain't apparent
These creditors, editors, when they playing with your finance
Swooping in to save the day then fuck you with no romance
You smell what I'm cooking? you feel what I'm saying?
Puppet masters pulling strings, the games we be playing
People acting strange while the predators are preying
Blindly follow leaders to the darkness for the slaying
Happy in our cages, munchies for the cravings
Netflix and chill, influence younger ages
Lock them into patterns that will benefit the mages
Scrolling down the screen tapping images and favorites
Living in the bubble, no clue they in the matrix
Leave yourself vulnerable, you right there for the taking
Chew up and spit us out and leave us there to rot
They take off in a rocket, we become a slave to bots
Track Name: Ignorant Ish
Lock away the secrets and water the books
Knowledge for a few who I argue are some crooks
With all of that aside, let's take a deeper look
33 degrees, on your knees and now you're hooked
Read between the lines, pay attention to the symbols
Awareness is the key, walk this line so nimble
Thread it with a thimble, analyze the patterns
History will show you the growth of dark matter
Watch the evil spread, we sit and break bread
Then turn on each other put that gun up to my head
Go on pull that trigger, show me what you're not
An independent thinker, yes I see that you forgot
Let the tables turn as we thicken up the plot
You thought you on top till they busted in your spot
Ended your parade, destroyed your charade
And your brother was the one who dropped the dime that they should raid

Trust, we got none
Lust, we got tons
Driven by desires, we're too focused on self
Greed fulfills our needs when we know nothing else

Legal pill pushers, legal pill poppers
Medicated nation yeah it's too late to stop them
Obsessed with their profits, laboratory, office
Feed them with religion, be submissive, no stopping
Put them in the coffin, to the ashes we toss them
Away, the day, the pain, the fix
The needle, the spoon, the flame, the chemist
The money trickles up as they label us a blemish
Keep the cycle spinning, propagate distractions
Move behind the curtains while we watch the main attraction
Tinker with our food, numb all our senses
Control of the masses is always the mission
The sugar, the soda, the water, the screens
Grasping what we want but neglecting what we need
Lost in translation, lost in our greed
Playing for our self when we're on the same team

Trust, we got none
Lust, we got tons
Driven by desires, we're too focused on self
Greed fulfills our needs when we know nothing else

Pimping ain't easy with a pocket full of stones
I'm sorry Mrs. Jackson stack this bread all on my own
Influences bad habits onto younger generations
Without having the most critical conversations
That shiny gold chain, it's still just a chain
Brag about riches but they still control your fame
You signed away your image, you signed away your name
Now they getting wealthy off of every move you make
Took that advance now the balance you can't shake
Molding you in their image but you cannot relate
The disconnect grows, you question all your faith
You're leaping off the edge into a pit full of snakes
Gasping for air in a world full of fakes
Fifteen minutes pass and they all forgot your name
You blew through the money now you got nothing to save
Welcome to the dark side where dreams bleed away

Trust, we got none
Lust, we got tons
Driven by desires, we're too focused on self
Greed fulfills our needs when we know nothing else
Track Name: Not Bulletproof
Put the pen to the paper play the beat and let it flow
Twenty years, still going, play this beat and let it go
Same dude at the core just weathered by the storm
Take a little bit longer for creations to be born
Marinade a little sweeter when we stray from the norm
The longer that we sit the stronger flavors will be formed
Missing days in Tennessee the studio all night
Miss my crew of solid dudes searching for the light
Building something epic, still chasing after paper
Slower with these moves but slick like Don Draper
Mad Men in the lab, we steaming up this crab
Elevate through strata, always grimy, never fab
With wrenches in the trenches got my boots in the dirt
A king among peasants, I absorb all their hurt
Say my kindness is a weakness cause I put my people first
But you just exploit them for everything they worth

Not bulletproof so call a truce, let's work it out till we find the truth then hit the booth and let it loose then roll on out as I throw the deuce
Daily grinder, I'm that writer, keep it hot like apple cider, reaching wider every time I drop this fire

Dodge a million shots, rise above and keep it flowing
Lost inside my stress, despite that mess, we keep on growing
Feel the sprinkles on my face then feel the rain start pouring
Feel the force of all the pains I'm steadily ignoring
Add it up, break it down, read between the lines
Keep lying to myself, I pretend I'm doing fine
Sliding on thin ice, afraid it's going to break
Frozen, stuck in time, sinking deep into the lake
Reaching for the sky as I try to grab the heavens
Thinking I can fly before I ask some basic questions
Beyond the common sense, always digging for the answers
Infect them with this knowledge, watch it spread and grow like cancer
Incremental margins elemental to this grind
Taking small steps, keeping patience on my mind
Keep lying to myself, I pretend I'm doing find
But the only time I'm fine is when I'm pouring out these lines

Not bulletproof so call a truce, let's work it out till we find the truth then hit the booth and let it loose then roll on out as I throw the deuce
Daily grinder, I'm that writer, keep it hot like apple cider, reaching wider every time I drop this fire
Track Name: Life In The City
Life in the city got me longing for the simple life
Far away from the noise and the glare of the lights
Miss the sound of crickets, the wind and the river
In the concrete jungle chasing after little slivers
A piece of this pie that I can call mine
Share it with my kids as we push through the grind
Down to the rind, till my bones turn to the dust
While the world rots away in a pile of its junk
Yuck, turned off by the glamour
Bring the rage of Thor when I drop my hammer
Shake the room so hard got you pissing in your Pampers
Growing mold with a stench left dying in a hamper
Don't stammer, let me fill in the blanks
Rolling through this game like a fleet of heavy tanks
Got a few surprises when I call in the flanks
Tell my boys go wild as they storm through the banks

Rush rush rush we forget how to stop
Information overload, watch the drip drip drop
Slaves to the clock, watch it tick tick tock
Slaves to our vices from the booze to the rocks
Zombies all around me trying to keep them from my family
Boarding up the windows got to sharpen my machete
Breaking down doors I just throw them my phone
The screens will suck away what's left of their soul
Trying to hit the road but the tank on E
Trying to stack some cream but debt collectors calling me
Charge it to the system as I move this money round
Play the long game watch me flip it to the crowds
Y'all don't see the grind, y'all just see the shine
Stay attracted to the bling I melt metal with these rhymes
Pack the punch of 60 million power lifting midgets
I stole that line from Gro while he got his kicks from Gidget
Track Name: Nobody From Nowhere
A nobody from nowhere trying to rise above everything
The alcohol, the know-it-alls, the debbie downers and all the fiends
Please believe I give it all with no expectations to receive
You have your freedom to perceive, I have my mission to retrieve
All the knowledge I can while I roam this land
Observe the situations, help where I can
Give a little hope, spark a big fire
Some even say, to them, I inspire
That keeps me going, for them I keep flowing
Even when it's rough, that keeps me growing
Branches to the tree, deep with the roots
Sinking in this sand with these mud covered boots
I will stand right here, I will fight till the end
My weapon my words, my sword is my pen
My pad is my shield, my passion my fuel
I will carve my own lane, yes rewrite the rules
Save an era raised by tools from turning into fools
Because these crazy court jesters acts so mumbling cool
Hold it down for Founders with every breath I take
the soul inside in this man is one you cannot break

On the out looking in, bird's eye view
Collect my thoughts, wait for the cue
Analyze scatter, recognize patterns
Put more thought into what really matters
Time is so precious, spend it so reckless
Exercise patience but we too restless
what we going to do? who we going to see? where we want to go? who we want to be?
I'm in this for the slow burn, I simply wait for my turn
So much mojo in this music guaranteed to straighten perms
It's time to let it go fam, slip into the Brougham
And ride on out to Do or Die, Po Pimpin for the slow jam
Windy City down to Tennessee, fly away with that Cali breeze
Elevate my frequency so frequently come fly with me
Soaring through this atmosphere, see the picture oh so clear
Everything I hold so near is driving me to smash my fears
Open up and just pour it out
Mix it with the kick drum, make the bass loud
EQ mids, that fader comes down
Sparking up flames deep underground
Bringing Unmatched Noise Knowledge and Sounds...BUNKS