Hip Hop Hump Day
Today we are keeping it Canadian with a look at the Godfather of hip hop in Canada, Maestro Fresh Wes.
Born Wesley Williams, Maestro became the first Canadian rapper to have a Top 40 hit with Let Your Backbone Slide.
In 1991, the Maestro was Conductin' Thangs.
After that there was a bit of a lull for Fresh Wes. After trying to break into the United States, Maestro made a comback in 1998 with Stick To Your Vision, which has a classic rock connection -- it samples These Eyes by The Guess Who.
And I'd almost forgot about this one!
Now, for the first time in 12 years, Maestro is back with a five-song EP called Black Tuxedo, a warm-up to a full-length album, Orchestrated Noise, which will be out early next year.
A couple of interesting things about Black Tuxedo -- the EP is produced by Classified, who is no stranger to Peterborough, and even if you're not a huge hip hop fan, there are some definite Canadiana rock and funk vibes going on. The track, Reach For the Sky, samples Blue Rodeo, and I Wanna Know (which you can listen to here) features a guest appearance from The Trews.
I got the opportunity to meet Wes a couple of times -- once, he came to my high school (Pine Ridge in Pickering) to talk to students, and I met him again in my professional life, working at the Edge in Toronto.
Here's a video I shot -- he really gets into it after about a minute.
If you want to hear more from Black Tuxedo, click here and have a Happy Hip Hop Hump Day!