Artist of the Week: Wale
With 2009 drawing to a close, it is hard not to be surrounded by the blogosophere’s lists of the year’s best music. Undoubtedly, Wale (pronounced wall-ay) was hip hop’s breakthrough performer, releasing his debut full-length album, Attention Deficit, on November 10th. This Nigerian-American rapper has released five mixtapes since 2005 (highlighted by 2008’s Seinfeld themed release The Mixtape About Nothing), building a following and attracting worldwide recognition. In addition to his solo material, Wale has offered guest vocals on tracks featuring Kid Cudi, Shwayze, Solange, Colin Munroe, M.I.A., The Ting Tings, The Noisettes, and John Mayer, among others.
Wale’s debut album includes collaborations with Lady Gaga, K’naan, Melanie Fiona and Pharell among many others, and is sure to be the first of many releases to come.
Hip hop with “raw skills and energetic, playful delivery and punchlines.”
Similar to: Jay-Z, Kanye West, Kid Cudi
“His swagger is impeccable. His sense of style is on point. His way with words is captivating. His African roots give him universal appeal. He’s the people’s champ, and his name is Olubowale Folarin, but you can just call him Wale.”
“With his Lil Wayne-worthy punchlines, Kanye levels of heart, and Hova-approaching fluidities of flow, Wale’s not being overly presumptuous when he calls himself the “past, present, and future of hip-hop.”
– Wilson McBee, SlantMagazine.com