Thanks to some digging in the forums at Arizona Beats, I fell into the seemingly endless YouTube rabbit hole that starts innocently with the search phrase “Nocando freestyle.” Set aside at least an hour if you’re gonna do that.
The forums turned up videos from 2007, when Nocando – who is appearing at our Hidden House extravaganza on Feb. 18 – came to Tucson and claimed the crown at Mic Fights in the 11th edition of the freestyle tourney. Battling has been Nocando’s calling card, and long before he started gaining well-deserved acclaim for his 2010 debut Jimmy the Lock, he was grinding on the freestyle circuit. It’s not so glorious, as you can tell from the videos of the final round at Mic Fight, held at some reggae shop called Twelve Tribes. But he’s a guy who has paid his dues and earned respect the hard way.
You’re also gonna want to check out his bouts during his victorious run at the 2007 Scribble Jam – if you have an hour or two to kill.