I pop in a CD...it’s called “Hip-Hop 4 Dummies.” I am skeptical. A fan of hip hop but with a tendency of listening to fresh young artists with a critical ear I listen. My first encounter with hip hop was The Roots and A Tribe Called Quest. From that moment forward the way I listened to “rap” was changed. Up until that point, I’d only heard the occasional hit on the radio. I wanted more from what I listened to – I wanted deeper stories, real life, I wanted truth. I find myself pleasantly surprised: laughing, nodding my head to the beat.
That was in 2009, the year when I met Sean Gates.
Sean Gates AKA IZREAL was born and raised in Wichita. He started free-styling at the young age of 9 and wrote his first songs at 11. He’s been most influenced by artists NAS, Jay-Z, Tupac and most of allNotorious B.I.G.
IZREAL’s solo album S.E.A.N. (Surpassing Expectations AND Negativity) is coming out early this summer and he’s throwing a party to celebrate. With hopes to set the stage for a larger audience and reaching for national attention, IZREAL lays down another witty, beat-bumping album. Wichita, I say come support your boy!
It’s 2012. I pop in a CD- Block Star Ent. Presents: “Suprassing. Expectations. And. Negativity”-again pleasantly surprised. You can check out IZREAL’s first album on iTunes but you’re going to have to wait on S.E.A.N. In the meantime, though, check IZREAL live in concert, Friday, May 24th with local artist Antimosity and others at The Scene~Ary.
*There is a Parental Advisory for Explicit Lyrics on IZREAL’s albums.
Check out IZREAL'S music: