Article by Charne Graham (@88nae88)
Alex Wiley is a vibrant 19-year-old rapper with a sound all his own. With only a little over a year of rapping under his belt, the Chicago bred artist started out making joke songs and uploading them to YouTube after he stopped attending high school. “I still kind of feel like I’m just joking around to be honest but I guess when people started taking me seriously, I started to take what I do a bit more seriously” explains Alex.
Chicago has surely taking a turn for the better in the spotlight (musically) and even younger artists are given the opportunity to be heard. “I think we are able to learn from the mistake of the people doing music before us and we take advantage of the internet which is super powerful” adds Alex. With over 100,000 views for Alex’s video “#MoPurp,” the internet is surely proven to be a powerful tool to get your point across. “Twitter is cool too because there is no middle man. People and fans don’t even have to come to your events they can speak to you directly and that’s what I think is so powerful” says Alex. Being featured on Chance the Rapper’s “10 Day” mix tape was also a highlight for Alex. “I’ve know Chance since I was 5, and he’s been rapping way longer than me” says Alex. “I heard a couple songs before the tape dropped and I already knew it was going to be amazing so I started dropping little hints about being on it”. The hints were heard and Alex’s verse on Chance’s “Windows” became the icing on the cake.
Alex admits that he doesn’t listen to much rap music these days he’s revealed that he gets inspired by Florence and the Machine and hopes to work with artists like Santigold in the future. If rap wasn’t the first career choice for Alex, he jokes about winning money in dance battles on the streets of Chicago instead. He is currently working on his first solo project “Club Wiley” which will be released soon and his first headlining show will be this Saturday Feb. 9th in Chicago at Reggie’s Rock Club. Alex’s advice to the kids is: “Know what to take and what not take seriously, quality is important so just don’t suck at what you do.”
Follow Alex Wiley on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/Alex_Wiley