Born & raised in Boston, MA – Roxbury/South End area – James Barnes, aka Classick is a bright young man who displays his unique intelligence and experiences through his music, born on February 12, 1988. Growing up, Classick had to avoid the temptations of the street life in order to find his way through his poetry. It wasn’t an option for him to grow up fast; it wasn’t a choice for him to adapt in a dysfunctional household. It was easy to get involved with the wrong crowd growing up but JB was fortunate to have a strong support system to keep him positive through the tough stretches. He also was aware of how detrimental it would be to himself and his family if he chose to take a negative route. He, inevitably, learned how to maintain through the struggle.
Classick attended Massachusetts Bay Community College for a couple of years where he studied Mechanical Engineering. He was also a part of the men’s basketball team where he earned himself a state and regional championship, and the team’s ticket to their first National Tournament at the time, where the Buccaneers placed 6th place in the country (’08-’09). However, his second year on the team didn’t go as planned and after seeing it diminish, he lost interest in finishing the school year. Simultaneously, he dealt with family difficulties and an obvious imbalance developed between school and his personal life that led to him withdrawing from college. JB didn’t want to be perceived as a typical dropout and was determined to make life a bit easier for himself as well as his family. So a few years after, he joined Year Up and graduated.
After getting over the fact that his basketball career might not be in his grasp anymore, Classick immediately went on to hone his musical talents. He’s always had a knack to rhyme – ever since poetry class in the 8th grade – and as he grew more mature, so did his rhymes. He’s got a genuine talent to flow with the music lyrically, delivering fresh, relative content in all his music. With everything that he’s been through, Classick was able to use those experiences as a window for his music. When you listen to his raps, you can clearly sense his passion and desire to succeed. JB keeps it honest in his rhymes and provides an inspiration for those looking for some. His past struggles are what reminds him to keep going and don’t ever look back.