No, I’m not talking about MC Skat Kat’s long-waited comeback. It all started when aggro rap duo Run The Jewels — a supergroup of sorts comprised of El-P and Killer Mike — began taking preorders for their sophomore album RTJ2. The two offered a variety of bonus incentives for advance purchasing the album, with stuff like tee-shirts, special edition vinyls, and backstage passes at the low and medium price points. At the very high-end of the spectrum — but, remarkably, not the highest — was this:
The Meow The Jewels Package: Run The Jewels will re-record RTJ2 using nothing but cat sounds for music. You are free to profit from this album in any way you see fit up to 100k in net global profit or 3 years (whichever comes first).
Despite the disclaimer at the bottom of the webpage that warned, “run the jewels reserves the right to take your money and not fulfill any of its obligations as outlined in any package priced at 35k or more,” one fan in Arizona decided it was worth the risk and launched a Kickstarter campaign to meet the exorbitant $40,000 price tag El and Mike cheekily put on the bonus package.
That campaign is now at over $21,000 and counting. Apparently, nearly a thousand backers are more than happy to contribute a portion of their wages to hear El-P and Killer — admittedly, more than competent emcees — rap over whatever constitutes cat noises.
Now, while this may all seem patently absurd and the result of the free-for-all carnival that crowdfunding has become, this particular venture could have a happy ending — though it probably won’t be the music. El-P, who handles the vast majority of the musical production for the duo, has stated that a portion of the sum will be donated to charity, specifically to the families of police brutality victims Eric Garner and Mike Brown. A handful of known producers including Just Blaze (Jay-Z) have pledged to help with the album if the funding goal is reached.
If you need a bit more incentive to contribute your hard-earned (cat)scratch for this specious meow mix, here’s a bit of catnip:
“Banana Clipper” Run The Jewels featuring Outkast’s Big Boi