Victor Rodriguez got a message from one of his teachers a while back.
She had a favor to ask: Would he use his rap skills to help write a tribute to Pasco High?
The 16-year-old junior wasn’t sure about the idea. He’d written songs before, but not about being a Bulldog.
What would he say?
Turns out, a lot.
Victor and two other young rappers created a catchy, thoughtful, inspiring song about Bulldog pride.
Another teacher at the school put together a sleek, stylish video to go with the track.
The result is an ode to school spirit, to a “Bulldog family” that’s always supportive, that never gives up.
And it’s going viral.
Since the video debuted Monday in an all-school assembly, it’s earned raves from students and staff — and it’s been viewed online thousands of times.
By midday Tuesday, it had more than 27,000 views on Facebook, with the count continuing to rise.
“Honestly, it’s been surprising,” Victor said of the response.
He knew the song was special, but “I honestly didn’t expect for it to pop off,” he said, adding that he and his collaborators are proud.
Victor wrote the lyrics with his brother, Mario Rodriguez, 20, a Pasco High alum, and Geo Rivera, 16, a fellow junior. They used a beat by Accent Beats.
Mario takes the opening lines. “You gotta have heart in this Bulldog nation. Taking noble Pasco, Bulldog invasion,” he raps.
“You can get through anything, no matter the situation. And nothing feels better than that graduation.”
Victor comes in on the chorus. “If we fall far down, we got to get back up. If we fall far down, we won’t give up. As long as I got you and you got me, we’re a prideful Bulldog family.”
As the song builds, Geo shouts out Pasco High’s cheerleaders, dance team, basketball players, wrestlers and bowlers.
“Pasco Pride started in 1952. And we was fresh on the scene,” he raps. “Pasco Pride stays true, and now it’s 2017!”
I’m just blown away by what these students were able to create.
Justin Brault, video production teacher
The project grew out of The Dogpound, a club aimed at supporting extracurricular activities and building pride and school spirit.
Teachers Dominique Wright-Jackson and Sarah Garza oversee the club. Garza was the teacher who recruited the young rappers to make the song.
Their colleague, Justin Brault, put together the video. He teaches video production at the school and used footage he shot himself, plus some shot by AV club students.
Brault has worked on other videos for The Dogpound, but this was the first one using an original song.
“I’m just blown away by what these students were able to create,” he said.
The video highlighted this year’s winter sports. Past videos have highlighted 2017 spring and fall sports; Brault said a video promoting other clubs and activities also is planned.
I just hope people see Pasco wanting to make a difference. It’s a stepping stone for us to change the culture here in Pasco and our school — (to show) that we’re supportive of each other, that we’re a cool school, creative. We have a lot of Pasco pride.
Geo Rivera, Pasco High junior
Wright-Jackson, Garza and The Dogpound have done a lot to build pride and school spirit, Brault said. He added that photography and yearbook teacher Brent Rust also has been helping in that effort.
“We’ve definitely seen an increase in student participation at events and in their support of each other,” Brault said.
Geo Rivera said he loves being a Bulldog. The school might not win every game, but “we have supporting fans. We have the best pride,” he said.
When Garza reached out to him about helping with the song, he was excited. “I said, ‘We’ve got to make this dope. It has to be cool,’” he recalled.
The 16-year-old is happy with how it turned out. At the school assembly, students cheered as it played.
“It was mind blowing,” Geo said. “When people saw themselves in the video or saw their friends, you could hear it — the different groups (reacting).”
“I just hope people see Pasco wanting to make a difference. It’s a stepping stone for us to change the culture here in Pasco and our school — (to show) that we’re supportive of each other, that we’re a cool school, creative,” he said. “We have a lot of Pasco pride.”