Things We Love: PA Flex picks
When it comes to representing Ohio culture through music, few have done it better than PA Flex and his group The 3RD. PA grew up on Columbus’ North Side with Rashad, CoCity and Blaksmif. As The 3RD prepare to release its next album, Attack of the DRUM, later this year, Flex sat down with Alive and revealed the things he loves. No surprise many of them had to do with Ohio.
Prohibition mob movies
I’ve always been into watching somebody have nothing and whether they’re breaking the law or not, they just flip it into this big organized crime family [laughs]. I was just watching the “The Alpo Story” documentary where they talk to a lot of family and friends, and they tell you all the behind-the-scenes stuff of what was really going on, along with the flashy stuff. Some of their stories are fascinating to me. I always like the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s black gangster films.
“Real American football”
I’m a soccer coach, and I coach three different teams, so I have this vision of getting more city kids to play soccer. Most kids who play soccer are real skilled kids who are only good at soccer, but I want to get more athletes. I think that’s where soccer is going in America. For us to really compete, we have to have athletes.
My wife’s a ceramicist, so wherever we go, we go to museums. She’s got me studying the history of art from a lot of indigenous stuff and how it’s evolved to now. She was saying how … Ohio is about to take over the world. It’s not just going to be rap music or photographers, it’s going to be writers, people who design clothes, painters. I’m fascinated with the culture of our city, and where it’s come from. I think it’s hard to appreciate it when you’re in it, so I’ve just been stepping back more and watching the artists.
Trading vintage clothes
We’re really into clothes. We’re not necessarily into new clothes. We all like our certain things. I like our stuff to be looking somewhat vintage. My guy Javon, his brother, with [CoCity], even [Rashad], we’ve been trading clothes since we were in high school and middle school. We just keep stuff. We might be getting a store going here.
Documenting Ohio history
Being a Columbus, Ohio artist, I’ve been involved with so much stuff that we’ve done in Ohio to get more exposure. With us coming out with this music in the fall, it’s something I’m really interested in doing — just documenting everything we’re doing and teaming up with people doing something similar, whether it’s photos, art, anything. I want to document it so my kids, my kid’s kids, when they’re doing stuff, they can look back and see why we did it.
MC/member of The 3RD/Elev8tor Music