Britton Bragg brought his “boys” to the Boulevard not to beat a rap, but to bring a beat ... and a rap.
Britton—aka “Braggin Rights”—brought the crew to the corner of Whalley and Ella Grasso Boulevard Sunday afternoon to shoot a video of his new recording, “Blvd Boys.”
“I was in jail when I came up with the name,” said Britton (pictured), who is 24 and grew up in the Tre. “I came home from jail, trying to do something positive with myself.” Britton pleaded guilty to four counts of first-degree robbery and firearms violations in connection with a 2009 incident. He got out of jail within the past month. And he got busy.
Britton recorded the song at West Haven’s Horizon Studio on Campbell Avenue. Then he enlisted a crew of friends to join him outside Crown Fried Chicken to shoot multiple takes for the video. They plastered poles with Blvd Boys stickers and brought the corner alive with swaying, music, and lots of between-cuts laughter. Click on the play arrow at the top of the story to join them during the shoot and check out the song.
Buddah (pictured), CEO of Global Studioz/ Global Entertainment, handled the camera work and directed the action. The recording blared from the sound system in a parked Range Rover Sport as Britton and his crew mixed it up in various settings. Britton rapped: “You know they working with the feds nigger/ Cooperating just to put your in the /I’m living life on the edge nigger/ Eyes closed both feet on the ledge.”
The Blvd “Boys” included several young women. After a crowded shot on the sidewalk in front of Crown Fried Chicken, Buddah directed “Tyshell” and “Sunshine” closer to the corner to pose alongside Britton for a take facing the street.
“You look scary with that mask on!” one of the women told Britton’s sidekick, who kept his face covered. He pointed to his and Britton’s ankles for an explanation. “We’ve got matching [electronic monitoring] bracelets on,” he said. “I really shouldn’t be here.”
The crew filtered inside Crown for another take, and spirits rose. Britton, his masked sidekick, and a few others ramped up the energy as Buddah pressed in close with the camera and several others took seats at a nearby table.
The Boys said they expect to back up the recording and video with a live performance within a month or so “downtown,” perhaps at Toad’s. In the meantime, Britton said, “Hit me on Twitter @TheLEADER__203.”
I wish this kid the best of luck, glad he is out trying to do something with his life. I wonder if he has a backup plan?
posted by: Yaakov on March 18, 2013 3:30pm
He’s lamenting people cooperating with the feds, people who are trying to clean up our streets and neighborhoods?
Does’t seem very reassuring.
I wish him the best.
posted by: Babz Rawls Ivy on March 18, 2013 3:31pm
This raised my spirits! Get it Blvd Boys!
posted by: Edward_H on March 18, 2013 3:51pm
Of all the places in New haven they had to choose a fried chicken joint to film in front of?
posted by: Charl on March 18, 2013 9:00pm
Did the writer and editor of the newhavenindependent.org truly try to pass this off as a “heart-warming” tale of a man struggling to turn his life around?
Gangster rap, profligate use of a demeaning racial slur, and promoting the “Snitches get stitches” mentality are not examples of becoming a better person. It is an example of someone attempting to cash in on the oppression of modern day African-Americans.
Yes, I said it. Hip Hop “Culture” has been the single worst thing to ever happen to the African-American community since slavery. Gangster Rap and the glorification of it has not been empowering to African-Americans. In reality, it has been a leading cause in rampant unemployment among African-American youth, teenage pregnancies, drug dealing, violent crime, gang activity, rape, and a lack of self-respect, to name just some of the negative outcomes.
Gangster Rap has convinced nearly all young African-Americans that if you have never been to jail, you are a “punk” and have zero street cred.
Will this honest opinion be published in the newhavenindependent.org comment section?
posted by: JuliS on March 19, 2013 9:35am
you list issues that are symptoms of systematic oppression and abject poverty, not ‘hip-hop culture.’
art is used to express one’s self, regardless of the type of genre.
blaming societal issues on music is weak, but doing it specifically in regards to the ‘african-american community’ is racist.
posted by: Curious on March 19, 2013 10:49am
I think the point is that it’s great he’s out of jail, and doing something to get ahead, but rapping is not exactly the best ticket to a great life. If he doesn’t make it, then what? The chances of making it as a gangster rapper are not great. I think Charl is wondering what I am wondering, namely, if this doesn’t pan out for him, what else does this kid have to fall back on? He seems motivated and able, is anyone engaging him with other opportunities?
posted by: Edward_H on March 21, 2013 6:44am
Your analysis is on point. The accusation of racism being thrown at your comment is simply a common way some people attempt to stifle opinions they do not like.