Ok, finally the first edition of #tosinadedaHYPE is here; a forum for exposing musical talents of talented upcoming naija music stars. Blaqbonez; I heard this dude first after the “Zombie” competition by Terry tha Rapman, I was actually waiting for the Top 2 [because they were to feature on Terry‘s mixtape]. When the winners emerged, I saw Boogey in 2nd place and a certain Blaqbonez in 1st place [in my mind I was like, how na?], then I listened to him and trust me, I became a fan instantly.
He’s been on his grind since then, so I decided to have a chat up with him and also post 4 of his songs, for you guys to listen and judge for yourselves. He’s got talent and potentials.
What are your full names?
Akumefule Chukwu-Emeka George
What kinda music did you grow up on?
Grew up in a partly Yoruba and Urhobo home, and you might wonder how come the Ibo name; that’s another days talk. So I was exposed mainly to the Yoruba worship songs, and a
couple of Urhobo songs too.
When and how did you realise you could rap?
It might come as a shocker to you but I learned I could rap in Febuary ‘09; I was at home with my cousin, she had a radio and was listening to a young rapper named Lil’ H, he was 14 years old at that time. She challenged me to rap knowing that I criticized Nigerian rappers a lot. So in a bid to prove I knew a lot about rap, I hit my notes and I never stopped doing that till today. Though I had good flow but the lyrics were nothing to write home about till I stumbled on a group on Facebook named “Rap Gladiators Arena“; I got to learn the basics about writing rap since it was an online battling site; it became my home and it still is. Without that group, I really don’t know what I’d have been rapping.
Your parents cool with it?
Hell no. At first, towards the end of ‘09 I told my mum about it; it was hell at home, she said she wouldn’t have anything to do with me if I decide to continue in that path, considering she is a pastor, she used all Bible quotes to convince me. I took a break but I couldn’t hold it in anymore so it’s been a secret since then, and my dad doesn’t think in his wildest dreams that his son raps.
Any role models home and abroad?
I have Royce Da 5’9 as a role model for his delivery, he influences me a whole lot and God bless him for that, alongside Kendrick Lamar and Nas. Then back home, I have M.I, Terry tha Rapman and Mode 9 as mentors. The first rhymes I actually wrote, I was replacing the words of one song off M.I‘s first album. I respect him a Lot. He’s also contributed to my rap today.
What inspires you?
Unlike others that need something special to get them in the mood, I just listen to music and get inspired; at times I could be touched by the lyrics of a track and be moved to write something, sometimes it’s the beat. Sometimes it’s the mood I’m in that inspires me.
What do you think makes you the best?
Wow!!! Best is a great word, as long as I have my mentors ahead of me, I might not say I am the best. But I think What makes me stand out is the fact that I am versatile with my rap, I could go fast, slow, tongue twist, sing some other times but most of all I know good music and I also know how to make them.
How did you feel winning the Terry tha Rapman’s “Zombie” competition?
I felt really great, awesome feeling, me and my goons seated and for a moment we thought we lost it but it was great at the end of the day. I just can’t explain it to have Mode 9 quoting my line was “wow“, woke up the next morning and it was buzzing all over Twitter, real great stuff.
Has it in any way inspired your career?
Yeah, I have that feeling that if I could win that competition I could win anything, that am a winner, that mentality has stuck with me ever since. And I met a lot of people that day people that have helped me to where I am today.
How do you write, before hearing a beat or after?
I listen to the beat, over and over again then just write as it flows. Most times I write in bits, at each instance I might write just 10 lines and go back and refresh my mind. Just so I don’t force myself at anytime.
So what are your future plans?
Yeah, I’m already working on my mix-tape, the “HipHop In Blaq” project, already dropped 3 tracks off it; “Stronger“, “Fire In The Booth” and “We Go Rise“. The mix-tape would have about 14-16 tracks on it. It’s gonna be a blend Of styles, some Dance-hall/Party kinda tracks coupled with a little bit of singing alongside real rap that I’m already known for. Another track off the mix-tape would be out in a few weeks, you should watch out and I’m hoping this would give me that breakthrough that I’ve been looking for.
So what message do you intend to pass with your rap?
I just want to make good music! I Intend to bring good lyrics to the table, ones that would make u smile, laugh, think and if I’m lucky, bless a lost soul. That way, even if I leave after this, the world would know Blaq was here.
Yeah, I just wanna say a big thank you to my boss Modeststan, he’s been really great and my good friend Oto, my right hand man, he was there when it all started and he’s still there till now, and thanks to everybody that enjoys my music. Its hiphop in Blaq Year.
- THE HEADIES 2012: Nominees List Review by Tosin Adeda (aceworldteam.com)
- @TosinAdeda’s Review of THE HEADIES NOMINATION LIST (djfinal.wordpress.com)
- Pmonks ENT. ‘n’ O’Boy ENT. present: #STFUnRAP (aceworldteam.com)
- Jp Swagnificent – MAKE YOU MINE + YOU KNOW EVERYTHING ft. Yung Slick (aceworldteam.com)
- Shay Jones – WE LIVE IT GRAY ft. Gray Jon’z + OWO ATI CHAMPAGNE ft. Cartiair ‘n’ Jakuzzy (aceworldteam.com)
- (ARTICLE) Commercial Music and the Nigerian Mentality By @Tosinadeda (djfinal.wordpress.com)