By Benjamin Njoku
AMID the current COVID-19 pandemic, Warri-based rapper, Egbezi born Ebizimor Anthony Ogbe remains career-driven, as he recently released his long awaited sophomore LP “Afrocentric: The Adaptation Album”
The project is a reaffirmation of his spot as one of the most prolific rappers on this side of the map.
The 10-track album features AFRIMA award winner Asikey as well as last year’s Headies Award nominees Payper Corleone and PayBacIboro. It’s produced in conjunction with Wolexly.
With hip-hop as its primary genre, the album centres on Africa – lifestyle, environment, sounds among others. It is remarkably influenced by some African music genres and sub-genres as inspired by some of the continent’s prolific music icons.
Speaking on the album, Egbezi who hails from a music family described the album as ‘a blend of Afro-pop and hip hop genres.’
According him, while growing up he was introduced to a bunch of African musical talents by his parents.
“I became familiar with the sounds of musicians like Fela Kuti, Echo Toikumo, King Robert Ebizimor, Bright Chimezie, Angelique Kidjo, Brenda Fassie and late Ras Kimono among other music greats,” he said:
“The funny thing is, at the time I thought they were just trying to feed me with a bunch of “old school garbage music” so I wasn’t all that interested… As I grew older, along the way, I found hip-hop. And it was very easy for me to fall in love with it.”
The fashion, the lifestyle; the rhythm and flow; the rhymes, and poetic story telling from lyricists like Pac, Fugees, Nas, Fat Joe is what caught my attention. I loved the hip-hop culture so much that I started writing my own rap bars. And for someone who’s usually shy, I found a voice; writing raps became a means of expression for me.”
“Fast forward to a few years later, and I’m stuck in a dilemma loving the same “Afro music” I once thought were garbage and my beloved hip-hop. Already, getting bored with norms and ‘follow follow’ mentality, I felt the need of bridging these two contrasting culture and sounds to create something new and unique. So I became an “adapter” and behold, “Afrocentric: the Adaptation Album” was created”.
After revealing the album’s title in 2019 till date, Egbezi who’s a Medical Laboratory Science graduate of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, has kept tabs in the game with singles like “It’s “OkAy to be Different”, “BlAst” featuring Payper Corleone, including a couple of shots and Trailer video to further reflect the album’s “Afrocentric” theme – a blend of hip-hop and African Culture.
Afrocentric, according to the rapper is currently in all online music stores.
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