“It’s about the evolution of a young man growing into manhood," he said. "It’s about love relationships, not only on a romantic level but love for the art you’re doing, music and acting, love for my mother, my daughter... And, of course, Chicago. It’s not only the backdrop on the cover, it’s the backdrop of my life.”
Common also revealed that the book would talk some things that would surprise fans who only know him for his "conscious" side—you know, that Badu-dating, knit-sweater-wearing, love-song-writing side. “I think we have a very true, authentic, warm sense about us coming from Chicago. There’s also some grit and rawness and ruggedness that exists, too. That comes out in things I’ve done. Some of those incidents I talk about where I got into fights, some street things I was involved in—it’s part of Chicago life, it’s part of me. People don’t always picture Common doing those things, but we’ve all got a past. I’m not afraid to look back.”
“As a man, I take responsibility for things I’m doing, have done or want to do,” he continued. “Talking about this stuff helped me see different aspects that make me a man — the sense of self, who you are, things you want in life, things you love, what your values are. A man has to be able to express himself, to say what he needs and wants and do that in any setting, to be himself. But he has to take responsibility."