K16 (real name Obinna Nwaobasi) is a part of Nigerian Music History http://www.africanhiphop.com/africanhiphopradio/naija-nigerian-80s-rap-on-vinyl/
Hailing from Mbaise in Imo State, he was one of the members of Nigeria’s first ever Hip-hop group, Emphasis.
After witnessing the birth of the Hip-hop explosion first hand, he was fascinated by the new genre and immediately starting writing. Already a keen poet, the transition was a natural progression.
Everything stayed pretty amateur, until he met the Anyanwu brothers: Obi (aka O.B.) and Okeh (aka Capt OIA) just kicking it in Owerri. They were very dissatisfied with the state of the Nigerian music Industry, when it came to hip-hop and r&b, so they decided to do something about it. They formed a group called Emphasis.
The group travelled to Lagos to record a demo with Scratch, an American Producer who had come back to Nigeria to discover his roots and “Which one you Dey” was born.
They submitted the demo to the Lekki Sunsplash Annual Christmas Concert/Talent Show. Emphasis Came 2nd in the completion and won an EP deal with Polygram (Later Premier Music)
Working out of Klink Studios with young Visionary producer Kingsley Ogoro, the Big Deal EP was recorded and released.
“Which one you Dey” and “Cool Down No Vex” were nationwide smashes. Indigenous Pidgin English Rap music. The first of its kind.
The success of the record opened the doors for another up and coming local rap act, Junior and Pretty and set the template for all the other urban acts that followed. All the way down to the platinum artists that are around today.
During the recording of their debut album WAZOBIA, the group broke up. All the artists were very young and there was too much parental pressure to abandon music and focus solely on education. Music back then was not the industry it is 2010.
K16 finished university and moved back to London, his original place of birth.
Going underground and dropping out of the scene completely, he honed his craft. Perfecting his wordplay and unique storytelling, triple language rhyme style.
He also started experimenting with production and beat making.
When all seemed set, he went back to Nigeria in 2007 to officially check out the scene.
On his return in 2008, he signed to Ikuku Records and began working on his debut solo release, The Return of the Baddest.
The album promises to create a defining benchmark for Afro/Naija Hip Hop both lyrically and beat wise.
The first official single off the album OYA is slated for release June 2010. Produced by Knighthouse, it promises to be a big summer anthem and will remind Naija what they’ve been missing in K16’s absence.
So far, K16 has put out a few free singles for your listening and viewing pleasure. These include:
IF YOU NEVER SABI – FEAT UNSEEN (CHECK OUT THE VIDEO. WWW.YOUTUBE.COM/IKUKURECORDS)
IKEBE – FEAT O.B. (CHECK OUT THE VIDEO. WWW.YOUTUBE.COM/IKUKURECORDS)
SWAGGA ON LOCK – FEAT TAIYA SOUL
The tracks produced by K16, providing a taste of things to come on the album.
Also due for release in June 2010, is K16’s stunning new EP entitled TRIBUTE TO THE SOUTH.
Recorded entirely with American Producers, it is his homage to the Dirty South/Crunk beats which he fell in love with after listening to the Young Jeezy VS RickRoss mixtape.
Featuring tracks like Naija Stand up, School Daze, Free me Jor and the DaGrin final Yarns sixteen bar freestyle, it is destined to be an instant Naija hip hop classic. Watch out for download links on your favourite Naija music blogs or check www.ikukurecords.com for definite release dates and links.
Right now, K16 is working hard on completing the RETURN OF THE BADDEST album with various top level producers and guest collaborators. It will definitely be an eclectic banger.
He will also be doing a media tour in Nigeria in July as well as a double video Shoot. Stay tuned for details.
K16 also recently recorded a track for the LIGHT UP NIGERIA CAMPAIGN. A movement he completely supports: Listen at http://www.ikukurecords.com or Google for other links.
He also recorded a JOS tribute track with SHA entitled HOME SWEET HOME earlier this year. Google keywords: K16 home sweet home for listening links or purchase it on ITunes.
Find out more about K16 at:
or if you’re on Facebook, check out the K16 fanpage. KEYWORD: K16 or www.facebook.com/k16
Follow him on Twitter: @KILLER16BARS
Alternatively, just Google: K16 naija