Wale Oyejide

One Day...Everything Changed

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Traditionally, the hip-hop Nation of Millions is mainly made up of urban poet/warriors (or imagined poet/warriors) who tell their tales of American streets. On the other hand, the underground is largely made up of the more advantaged individuals who find their malaise in the mediocrity of American life and post-Prozac love. But then how do you explain Wale Oyejide, a Nigerian-raised American college graduate who has spent time living in the Middle East? Having lived a global life even the most political of rappers can only take educated guesses about, it's highly fortunate that this producer, known for sci-soul beats as Science Fiction, has stepped behind the mike, offering a blend of Sly Stone holler ("Ever After") and lyricist flow the slightest of native patois ("Third World Anthem"). Although this is his first time out on the mic, Oyejide hold his own with craft masters MF Doom and Jay Dee, not by competing with the gruff rhymers, but by augmenting their distinctly American growl with his far more soulful pipes. Not as dirty as American diggers (perhaps because he's seen the world's real dirt), Oyejide brings an enlightened dose of heart to a scene that, however genius and genuine, rarely looks beyond the basement studio and the block.

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