Brooklyn born and bred Rick Gonzalez, an actor most known for his roles in popular movies such as “Old School” and “Coach Carter,” also goes by the name Realm Reality, a hip-hop alter ego that many of his fans have no idea exists, but that he insists is a much larger part of his life than many would guess.
Gonzalez first developed the persona for himself in 1998, drawing inspiration from many different influential rappers, starting with Puerto Rican Big Pun. “He dropped Capital Punishment, and that cemented the deal for me. He basically told me by dropping that album that anyone that looks like me and comes from where I come from can do what I do,” the actor said.
The list my no means ends there, though. Gonzalez also credits Biggie, Jay-Z, Nas, and Mobb Deep, and inspiring him, but stands by Tupac as his favorite rapper as he feels a deeper connection to him – not something you hear from a Brooklyn-boy everyday. “I was a huge Tupac Shakur fan because I was drawn to his passion,” Gonzalez said. “Technically, as a rapper, he probably wasn’t the best. But the way he convoyed his emotion and who he was an actor made me really connect with him.”
Gonzalez spoke to Mixtape Daily about his little known passion, saying, “It’s always been a part of me, and acting will always be there too, so it’s not like I’m embarking and leaving one for the other. It’s a perfect marriage because the world of hip-hop and what I do, it lends itself and gives me the time I need to devote to it, and at the same time, I can still read scripts and audition for things and be a part of films.”
Realm Reality is currently putting the final touches on his mixtape The Invisible Man, currently set to be released online May 24th through RealmReality.net.