Charles Brockman III of Texas faces one passion for life after life

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Often when Charles Brockman III sings, a smile spreads across his face and his eyes close, as if he is walking to that euphoric place that only musicians know. His hands fly to his chest or crisscross the melody. The Texan athlete loves performance.

TikTok is one of Brockman’s steps. His two million subscribers on the video-sharing platform know him as theonlycb3, the user who writes, films and produces comical music videos. What they may not know is that the senior UT is one of the best university 400-meter hurdles athletes in the country.

At the Texas relays in March, Brockman clocked a time of 49.78 in the 400 hurdles. He’s the sixth fastest in Division I so far this season away from home.

Brockman, who transferred from Mississippi state in 2019, has been playing track since he started the sport at the age of seven. He found his sporting vocation with hurdles at the age of 11 and won numerous junior Olympic championships.

But Renaissance man has been singing, dancing and performing for even longer than that.

The former theater boy, who played the French horn for the Plano high school orchestra and performed in his church choir, grew up listening to oldies music, songs from his parents’ generation. Brockman loves the music of legend Anita Baker as much as newcomers Chloe and Halle.

“If I go for a walk with my mom and play this kind of music, she says, ‘You don’t have to play this for me. You can listen to what you listen to, ”said Brockman. “And I’m like, ‘This is what I listen to. ”

A fan of R&B and hip hop, Brockman has recorded covers of songs by artists such as Beyoncé and Jay Z, Adele and Jhené Aiko for his YouTube channel. The interpersonal communication student started making music during his freshman year of high school when he found enough money to buy studio equipment for his bedroom.

In his rendition of neo-soul singer SZA’s adorable track ‘Garden (Say It Like Dat)’, Brockman’s performance is fluid, like the soul music that uplifted him, and he doesn’t hesitate to play with the vocals. or vibrato. He recently released an original single called “Better Days”, a gospel-inspired song in which he speaks to God about his trials.

Brockman is just as emotional on TikTok, but much dumber. He joined the app around the time many others did: the start of the pandemic lockdown in the spring of 2020. His involvement on the social network was initially a solution to his boredom since he couldn’t not compete.

Texas track and field competitor Charles Brockman III has one of the fastest times in the 400-meter hurdles in the country this outdoor season, a 49.78 at the Texas Relays.  It is the third fastest time in Division I.

“I was watching a lot of videos, but then I was seeing stuff and I was like, ‘I think I could do that or put my own twist on it,’” he said.

Some of his most popular videos on the platform are his music videos that reimagine scenes from popular movies and TV shows. He has created a compilation of tiktoks that see him reconstruct sequences from the “Twilight” films. Brockman, an aspiring actor, pokes fun at melodrama in films by delivering the lines, using special effects, and performing his own stunts.

His TikTok followers see a side of him that those in the track world might not know, but Brockman’s dad, who shares his namesake and once doubled as a track coach, saw the creative side of his. son exposed since the runner danced with Barney. at daycare and performed circus skits with his cousins.

These artistic leanings are what Brockman’s father, a former stand-up comedian, occasional extra-TV and short filmmaker, hoped to manifest in his son, from a long line of artists.

The track daddy left his stand-up career to spend more time with Brockman, his only child who also shares his birthday.

Together they watched the same TV shows like “SpongeBob SquarePants” and bonded through their mutual love for art. “Holes,” the 2003 film based on Louis Sachar’s novel about a young man sent to a juvenile detention camp, was one of their favorites.

“I always sang the song, ‘You gotta go in there and dig those holes,’ Brockman’s dad said as she sang the lines.” When I took him to school in the morning while he was still in a seat in the morning. ‘auto I started to sing it and it was in the back (singing)’ Dig it Oh oh oh. ”

In addition to singing “Dig It” with his father, Brockman enjoyed watching comedians Eddie Murphy and Martin Lawrence. Viola Davis and Samuel L. Jackson are two of his other favorite actors. If the senior does not manage to play one day, he would like to write or produce.

Brockman’s father is proud of his multi-talented son who reminds him of himself, but a ‘step above’. He wants to see him embrace his creative side, but would also like to see him run fast. This is one of the reasons Brockman’s dad is happy his son transferred to UT’s track and field program.

“I would really like to see him turn professional on the track and maybe then be part of the Olympic team,” said Brockman’s father. “… If he wanted to have his own studio or his own production company or whatever, it would pay off. And he could still do what he loves because he loves competition. In five to ten years, I would really like to see him do a lot of everything. “

Everything Brockman does. He’s training hard to level up and cut even more from an already fast 400-meter hurdles time. He also creates, whether it’s rocking a song or making fun videos.

In a clip from another of Brockman’s popular TikTok compilations, he gives an impression of Troy Bolton, the protagonist of the 2006 Disney Channel film “High School Musical.” The scene Brockman mimics is where Bolton sings the song “Get ‘Cha Head in the Game,” a pop number about the identity crisis he feels as a basketball player who also enjoys the arts.

“Why do I feel so bad?” the character sings. “My head is in the game, but my heart is in the song.”

This inner conflict does not exist for Brockman. He agrees with him that some passersby on campus know him as the guy from TikTok and those in the track world know him for something else. Embracing all of his passions takes the pressure off and makes him feel less confined.

Maybe that’s why he’s such an ultra-competitor once the starting gun goes off. And when he sings, he goes to this special place.

“You have to do this to stay sane and put your talents into other things,” Brockman said. “Because if you have talent in more than one area, use them all and finally… maybe they can all take off.



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