EP: Ikey – Green Card
Nigerian-American Rapper Dissects the American Dream On Debut EP, Green Card, Premiered by Complex
Critical Praise for Ikey:
“His delivery is cool and calm with a bite… Ikey takes this shit to the next level.” – Pigeons & Planes
“…continuing to impress hip-hop fans all over the globe with his melodic and confident flow.” – Okayplayer
“A bubbling MC you should definitely keep an ear open for” – HipHopWired
Following a strong series of single and video releases, Maryland via Lagos rapper Ikey has released his long-awaited Green Card EP. The project premiered via Complex, who said that Ikey “shows off his strong and deliberate flow that he balances with meaningful lyrics that when combined truly makes him a name to watch in hip-hop.” Ikey’s single “Story, Story” premiered last week via HipHopWired, who said the track “is triumphant in tone, with Ikey using situations of struggle and despair as a means to motivate himself and listeners to be greater,” adding, “This here is that feel good, stick to your ribs music.”
Green Card is a collection of music shaped by the myriad of experiences, both locally and abroad, that molded Ikey into the man he is today. In singles like “Timbuktu” and “Olodo,” Ikey weaves tales of multiple jobs and being called an “olodo” (Yoruba slang term for dummy) for pursuing a rap career. The songs are seamlessly interwoven with confident, metaphor-driven rhymes over production inspired by Fela Kuti, DJ Premier and other musicians influential to Ikey. “I grew up in Nigeria during a time of social and political turmoil,” he explains. “I actually lived in Lagos during the last military regime, and my experiences from that time greatly influence the stories I tell. Nigerian music from artists like Fela Kuti, Oliver de Coque, Osadebe, and music from French World Music group Deep Forest that my dad played during that time inspired me musically.”
“My job as an artist is to always show my appreciation, represent our story properly and do whatever it takes to make sure we all achieve that American Dream,” Ikey told Okayafrica in an interview feature about his Nigerian roots and how his experiences have influenced Green Card. “I’m just a young kid straight out of Lagos,” Ikey says. “When I see people like Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie being sampled on Beyonce records, it makes me feel people want that true African story. I just feel there are a lot of Nigerian-Americans trying to tell that story, and I’m trying to tell it the right way.”
Listen to Green Card: https://soundcloud.com/any-means-necessary/sets/green-card-ep/s-IclnV
Check out the Complex premiere: http://www.complex.com/music/2015/04/ikey-green-card-ep-premiere-stream
For Ikey, it’s all about the story. Born in New York, with roots in both Spanish Harlem and Lagos, Nigeria, Ike Obioha connected with music at an early age. The diverse palette of his father’s music collection painted a musical canvas that pays homage to everything from Elton John and Journey to the Neville Brothers and Igbo Nigerian highlife singer Chief Stephen Osita Osadebe.
Ikey’s unique, 1.5 generation immigrant experience influenced both the subject matter and creation of his music. Despite pressure to embark upon a more scholarly career, Ikey would ultimately find himself opening for the likes of Big Sean and have his music covered in the Washington City Paper. He balances his penchant for music representing all aspects of the human experience over tracks representative of hip-hop’s golden era while maintaining his unique Nigerian-American identity. “I’m just a young kid straight out of Lagos,” Ikey says. “When I see people like Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie being sampled on Beyonce records, it makes me feel people want that true African story. I just feel there are a lot of Nigerian-Americans trying to tell that story, and I’m trying to tell it the right way.” Ikey’s Green Card EP is out now.
“Story, Story”: https://soundcloud.com/any-means-necessary/story-story/s-nrB8
“Lord” (ft. Kami de Chukwu): https://soundcloud.com/any-means-necessary/lord-feat-kami-de-chukwu/
Bio, photos, and more info on Ikey: http://audibletreats.com/ikey