A vocal warm-up is a common ritual among reporters prior to going on air. What isn't common is when the reporter opts out of a standard "Sally sells seashells by the seashore" and instead chooses to perform a lyrically complex, tongue-twisting rap.
Midland reporter Kim Powell of KWES NewsWest9 warmed up her vocal cords with a virtually flawless rendition of Blackalicious' "Alphabet Aerobics," aptly subtitled as "The Cut Chemist 2 1/2 Minute Workout."
Blackalicious' frontman, Gift of Gab, is known for his tongue-twisting, multisyllabic rhymes and delivery at break-neck speed, making any attempt to imitate his style a near-impossible challenge.
Powell's rendition of the song — which, as the title suggests, goes through the entire alphabet with insanely alliterative verses — occurred just before a live shot in Odessa. Although she struggled a tad as she reached the letter Z (you try saying "zig zag zombies, zoomin' to the zenith" at a spitfire pace), her delivery was nothing short of impressive. Powell's confidence in her performance was clear as she imitated a classic "mic drop" after she completed the last verse.
Given the video's immense popularity, Powell clarified on Twitter Monday that she performed the entire song without the backing track:
For the record, I did it A Capella and the music was added later on. I'm not entirely off beat ;)— Kim Powell (@kimpowell64) December 29, 2014