Inferno Mobile Recording Studio | The scene
The Chicago Park District’s roving rap camp.
Wednesday, July 25, 11am “You say you can’t beat-box?” Jayve Montgomery (pictured) asks the day campers at Union Park. “You’re a human being—of course you can beat-box!” Along with his partner in rhyme, Ed Borstein, Montgomery is helping a group of elementary- and middle-schoolers create a hip-hop track about healthy living. The two Chicago Park District program specialists tour local parks with the Inferno Mobile Recording Studio, an arsenal of microphones and computers, engaging kids in “collaborative community overdubbing.” Borstein holds out a mic and says, “This is not going to hurt you; this is a tool.” Aimiose, a ten-year-old, tentatively shuffles forward to provide the beat-boxing backbone for a track that took shape over an hour, as the camp counselors layered on the kids’ singing, humming and rhyming. When it’s his turn, eight-year-old Alex raps, “Live your life healthy, and your body will be wealthy.” As he finishes, another camper snickers. Montgomery whips around and scolds the heckler. “It doesn’t sound right. It sounds Alex!” The offender looks skeptical, so Montgomery continues. “You can only mess up music if you have a sheet in front of you.”