BALK OF THE TOWN “I have a record coming out with DJ Khaled in a few weeks,” says Mission Hill MC Bomshot, “so do you think I give a fuck about what anybody around here thinks?”
The night before this interview, Bomshot pulled what might go down as the most boneheaded stunt in Boston hip-hop history when, in the middle of a crowded Slaine and Ill Bill show at Harpers Ferry, he attempted to cheap-shot the former from behind. He landed in a pit of La Coka Nostra fans — who proceeded to stomp his mammoth frame until security dissolved the beatdown.
I almost canceled our meeting — it’s my policy to remain neutral in rap beefs, and I was hardly looking to reward Bomshot for spoiling a dope show just to bolster sales of his new War Ghosts disc (due June 18) with Holocaust. But then, as local rap scenesters called to gossip about the Harpers debacle, and stories of his legendary self-destructiveness resurfaced, I decided that someone had to document this Mission Hill savage’s notorious rise to the middle.
“It's a sign of respect — I don’t just dis any rapper,” Bomshot says of his long litany of trivial feuds. “I always dissed people who were doing things. In a sense, I felt happy for them, and liked what they were doing, but at the same time, hip-hop is that struggle. I grew up listening to [Bronx-bred “Fuck Compton” rapper] Tim Dog. There have to be battles.”
Bomshot is the Bean rhyme scene’s eternal elephant in the room. A convicted felon who’s spent eight years behind bars, he is also, like him or not, one of an elite group of Boston rappers who attracts a legitimate fan base beyond New England. Still, no matter how low you set the bar, Bomshot will crawl under it. He became the official undisputed star of Boston hip-hop’s blooper reel in the late 1990s after attempting to lead the crowd in a “Fuck Akrobatik” chant at an Akrobatik album-release party. Another time, he punched a college DJ in the back of the head while the jock was pissing out behind a club — not because he’s against public urination, but because he thought his new single deserved more spins.
Club owners are by and large not Bomshot fans either. He’s been banned from virtually every area venue, and he still owes the Midway in Jamaica Plain a new ceiling fixture. As for the Paradise, he was once arrested for stealing from a girl’s purse backstage and subsequently looting her apartment. It was a familiar routine — years earlier, he’d been incarcerated for “upgrading a [friend’s] studio with some Berklee student’s equipment.”
“My mother had just committed suicide,” he says of his situation at the time. “I had no place to stay, and I was running around with nothing but my Dirty Harry pistol and two changes of clothes. I don’t do shit like that anymore, and it’s not an excuse for my rap sheet being bigger than me, but it’s from growing up without guidance. I didn’t have a father, so hip-hop taught me everything.”