When Cody O’Brien plotted about how to draw attention to his fledgling rap career, he never thought he could accomplish that by rapping about his summer job at Kelly’s on the Beach.
But that’s just what has happened over the last week as his summer anthem about working at Kelly’s has taken off on the Internet and received attention on Jam’N 94.5 radio station and on the popular Boston Barstool Sports website.
“I’m not really sure what part of the song I like the best, but everyone loves it when I say ‘Slicin’ up the hot beef,’” said O’Brien, 18, who goes by the stage name of Dakota Jack. “I’ve been rapping as long as I can remember and I started making these videos two or three years ago. They get better all the time because I meet more people and get more experience with each one. I’m pretty much self-taught as a rapper and a producer.”
After just a week on the Internet, the Kelly’s Roast Beef song (as it’s called) has gotten more than 30,000 hits. Last Friday, FM 94.5 played the song and interviewed O’Brien and his manager, John Barry.
The lyrics are all written by O’Brien and many of the managers and fellow employees from the Beach location are used in the video – as are several shots from behind the counter at the famed Beach eatery.
The sudden notoriety over a gag done for work is something that O’Brien said he never expected.
In fact, he had been putting off making the video for a year.
O’Brien has worked at Kelly’s on the Beach for three summers now. Last year, after learning of O’Brien’s rapping talent, Barry asked him to make a video for the store.
Finally, during this year’s Sandcastle Festival weekend, O’Brien got his camera out, rehearsed his lyrics and made the video.
“It turned out to be a really fun track and it makes you smile and laugh and people are responding to it,” said Barry. “It’s fun absolutely, but for anyone who knows Kelly’s or who works at Kelly’s or once worked at Kelly’s, it really hits home. It’s a real good time.”
O’Brien grew up on Augustus Street and graduated Revere High School this past June. He said he has plans to attend UMass-Lowell this fall, but has no intention on stopping his rap career.
“I’m definitely going to keep writing songs and making videos,” he said. “I think this has shown me that if I keep rapping about things people like – such as Kelly’s – then more people will listen to my music and hear what I can do.”
To watch the video online, go to www.twitter.com/RevereJournal and look for the YouTube link.
O’Brien is the son of John and Lisa O’Brien.