Optional 2

Optional 2

BandHip HopEDM

Collegiate hip-hop forcing its ethos on some unexpected genres, like funk, rock, and dancehall. Versatile beats and quirky lyrics make for an engaging and thought-provoking listen/show.


No one associates college with hip-hop. Optional 2 want to change that.

Optional 2

...are a hip-hop group that takes it back to move it forward: one DJ, one MC, and several messages make for a compelling alternative to modern popular music. No hype men. No weed carriers. Just two kids making the music they always wanted to. The band attends Goucher College in Maryland, USA and makes music because they love it.


...is a composer/producer/DJ from Houston, TX. In addition to playing piano, organ, bagpipes, turntables, guitar, bass, viola, and singing, he's also got a damn good ear. The beats for Optional 2 don't sound like anything else or everything else - they sound like hip-hop through the ears of a kid who didn't even listen to hip-hop as recently as 2003.

Thursday Knight

...is a songwriter/vocalist from Seattle, WA. After cutting his teeth in funk-rap-rock outfit F5 during his high school years, he joined Robespierre and two other Goucher students in forming a successful folk-pop group, New House Pins, during their freshman years. His writing comes from several perspectives, and his deliveries are equally diverse, coming from a kid who always loved hip-hop but wanted to move in a different direction.

Optional 2's live show, peppered with freestyles and impromptu back-and-forth, has consistently wowed audiences in a variety of venues since the band formed in 2005.


Don't Think Twice, It's All Right

Written By: Optional 2, Bob Dylan

V1 [Papa Joe D]
It ain't no use to sit and wonder why, babe
It don't matter, anyhow
And it ain't no use to sit and wonder why, babe
If you don't know by now
When the rooster crows at the break of dawn
Look out your window and I'll be gone
You're the reason I'm travelin' on
But don't think twice, it's all right

V2: [Thursday Knight]
Papa Joe in my ears it's just perfect for rollin'
In the rickshaw pickup truck that I'm holdin'
See I don't need no consolin' my heart turned cold in
an instant but the back of my neck is still roastin'
Wonder if that's just how you are on this coast and
I was chokin' back the words when I told ya
But now I'm actin' cool, I just wish I could show ya
One hand on the wheel, the other moves as I'm flowin'
You can be alone after what you set into motion
You gave me pause like a semicolon
I'm not gettin' bent and you know I'm not broken
But I'm not jokin' when I say the book is far from open
Far from Oprah and Frey I'm not the drama and you know this
I was so good to you and you didn't even notice
So don't think twice, it's all right cuz I'm focused

It ain't no use in turnin' on your light, babe
That light I never knowed
And it ain't no use in turnin' on your light, babe
I'm on the dark side of the road
Still I wish there was somethin' you would do or say
To try and make me change my mind and stay
We never did too much talkin' anyway
So don't think twice, it's alright

Only light I need I know I'll find
When I get that light you know I'll shine
Oh I can get it any old time
And I can kick just any old rhyme
And a lady who's good to me could be mine
I see time slippin' into the future
It's not what I'm used not what I used ta
Do this thinkin' thing so who does
Matter but me left of Tulsa a coast I will move ta
Will be so pacific to be so specific
I don't need you to be my own critic
Yeah I wish you'd've talked but I'll just go with it
Just think some more as I hear guitar pickin'
So yeah I am with it yeah your man was kiddin'
Himself all this time a lie to go with the
Times I was trippin' why should I pretend you're forgiven

It ain't no use in callin' out my name, gal
Like you never did before
And it ain't no use in callin' out my name, gal
I can't hear you anymore
I'm thinkin' and a-wond'rin' all the way down the road
I once loved a woman, but a child I'm told
I gave her my heart but she wanted my soul
So don't think twice, it's all right

Seems like maybe I'll see another world
Left my car, my baby, parked with another girl
Not another word, I've always got some nerve
You always had some curves but still it wasn't worth
You callin' out my name instead of somethin' worse
I got too much soul to place in your purse
You got everything else for better or for worse
Makes me wanna swerve past somebody and curse
But I want to be the satisfied one not the denied one
Happy in the driver's seat don't wanna ride gun
I'm better, hope you've heard
Word travels fast and I want you disturbed
Want you thinkin' bout me as I step off the curb
And jolt my body into the next verse
It's all right, that's all I have for words
Don't think twice, that's all I have for words

I'm walkin' down that long lonesome road, babe
Where I'm bound I can't tell
But 'good-bye''s too good a word, gal
So I'll just say 'fare thee well'
I ain't sayin' you treated me unkind
You coulda done better but I don't mind
You just sort of wasted my precious time
But don't think twice, it's all right

Listen To The Girls

Written By: Optional 2

I've been thinking, it seems like it's true
That girls got way more to say than guys do
More than I do novel versus haiku so I like to
Listen to the girls like I listen to the groove
Liked girls growin' up now I like 'em even more
Give my attention cuz that's what I can afford
Harder-workin' in my classes better-lookin' on the floor
Grew up in Jet City I'm a feminist for shore
So I got a lot of female friends it works that way
Cuz I listen when they're talking these eyes don't stray
Shit I was raised by a black queen and a blonde-ish babe
So I do this for Dusty and for Donzilai
And Nehal and Nora so on and so forth
I could go on but I'd rather go forth
and prosper not divide or multiply
I'm good with what my girls are providin' in my life


Listen to the girls, man
Listen to the girls, man
Listen to the girls, man
I'm talkin' to you
Listen to the girls, man
Listen to the girls, man
Listen to the girls, man
I'm talkin' to you
Listen to the girls, man
Listen to the girls, man
Listen to the girls, man
Rachel: I'm talkin' to you
Are you listening?
Cuz I'm talkin' talkin' talkin'

So fellas when you think you bidin' your time
You're just diggin' your own grave She ain't diggin' your lines
If she's worth it at all she's watchin' you with both eyes
Until you grow to appreciate conversation - don't try
Why? Cuz a young 'un like me got a handle on it
I like the Storm just as much as the Sonics
Cuz Lauren Jackson's a bawse to be honest
And I gotta be honest more than I gotta be brolic
You musclehead fellas got the tendency to gossip
Even more than the misses honestly, the good ones stopped it
I don't talk to Pink Ladies I been beyond it
Talk for hours in the hall in her room, in the office
If your mind is driftin' I'm still talkin' bout talkin' yeah
Nowadays it's the only way you really gonna get somewhere
Since I already got a woman that's music to my ears
I might as well try to save you dummies a few years


You don't listen
Oh no you don't
No you don't get it
No no no you won't
You know I wonder
How you last this long
But you don't listen
So I'm movin' on

I'm not playin' Cyrano or bein' the next Rhymefest
Au contraire I dare you not to find what line's best
But just to listen sometimes that's what a girl needs
If you'd listen every time a girl speaks
You wouldn't need to act like you know
You could just ask instead of frontin' like a hoe
Yeah, I like that we started usin' that word for guys
Cuz I see so many male bitches sittin' on the side
Watchin' the artist pretendin' they ain't mad at him
Cuz they gotta take their shirts off to be masculine
I'm laughin' when they tryna get their weight up
and I stay up late asking my sweetheart how her day was
Three years and runnin' knock on wood I got it good
I got sisters confidin' in me like their mothers wish they would
Hmm I ain't that fine there must be a good reason
So this ain't braggin' the chorus been tellin' you my secret


All Grown Up

Written By: Optional 2

What it is
What it is
Ain't what it was

I hope that doesn't come back to haunt me

My demographic's large - all over the place
Generation Whatever - no matter the grade
Disaffected youth is nothin' new but nowadays
We gettin' big allowances or findin' different ways
Kids are sellin' sex - from the mall to the Super 8
Then back to the mall shit happens every day
You wouldn't know it though at least from the way
No papers report herpes outbreaks up in the sixth grade
Yeah I know man it was hard for me to believe
But I knew kids were fuckin' before I was 13
And it wasn't kids in gangs or fresh out of JuV
It was the type that you see on 'My Super Sweet Sixteen'
Yeah we all saw the ugly hilton fucked in that scene
But I bet you hit rewind you'd be seeing some things
These grown-ups don't wanna open their ears 'less we sing
So here comes the chorus then maybe we do some things

I'm tryna tell you but you don't even know
These kids go places that you don't even go
We all grown up or somethin' close
And you can't tell us shit that we think that we know
You know what it's like / But we know how it is
We know how to get it / You just think we're kids
We know what's wrong though you told us what's right
We know what's goin' on / But we know what you like

You like to hear it's good you like to read the stats
When somethin' goes wrong just send the kid to jesus camp
If you got the cash if not they don't even watch our ass
So Randy Wagstaffs got the middle school on smash
Screenprint T's with Big, the Snowman or Stop Snitchin'
Newscasters don't get it can't understand how kids is livin'
They actin' so livid but never been in our position
How can you judge but not be willin' to even hear an opinion
So we judge back when I read about Foley IM'in
Tryna touch that 16 year-old kid are you kiddin'
Yo I loved that laughed my ass off but deep inside
I know it's just a reflection of what's happening in life
Adults are trife - givin' us these rocks and pipes
When really we should be burnin' down the Wal-Marts and mic
The Fortune 500 till they admit who's runnin' the land
And every fifth-grader can see the blood on their hands


I'm 20 now and it's funny how
Young kids probly don't even trust me now
I'm on your side kids these adults want me down
I keep askin' questions they can't shut me out
These grownups we been actin' their ages
It's just an act though cuz they ain't bothered to train us
If your history books dated back to Reagan
Why wouldn't you be on the corner slingin' a little yay and
Prayin' for a change but outside we yellin' 'Ay!'
Cuz everyday we hustlin' - every-everyday
And I know some adults love to look at us this way
Tried to put a kids choir on this joint but they were playin' GTA
No Child Left Behind? even Pink sees through that shit
Ain't all the President's fault - it's every single ass kissed
That allows ignorance of my people to exist
And y'all all my people so let's get this fixed



Moment of Truth LP (2006)

Set List

Average set: ~1 hour

Way I Was Raised
Enuff Dat
Listen To The Girls
chopped-and-screwed interlude
Clap Stomp
Don't Think Twice, It's All Right
Don't Believe
All Grown Up