Poe is arguably one of the best Nigerian rappers right now but he’s no doubt the best rapper under Don Jazzy’s label. The Mavins records artist since making the switch from indie darling has used his releases to prove that the contract doesn’t signal a change in his sound or hard work. His debut single, “Man Already” went a long way in satiating fans who felt Don Jazzy’s history with his artists posed a threat to Poe’s artistry. But Poe is already over that and just wants to continue making music the best way he knows how. And what better way to rap free of all label pressures and fan expectations than to freestyle over a laid back beat.
Taking inspiration from J Hus, Poe steps to the mic to describe where his mind is at and apparently J Hus is not the only fan of White Benz. With his J Hus reference, he acknowledges the affiliating relationship between London artists and Nigerian music, supporting the narrative that he’s preparing to take Nigerian hip-hop to the global status that Afropop is enjoying. He talks about his hustler ambitions while also serving hard yet decidedly casual bars. “What is it about these white Benz/Got me using all my five senses/I tell myself it’s just a car. I’m forever with the bars/Every line is like a life sentence” he raps. Asides J Hus, DJ Yin and Bankyondbeatz also get credits on the 2 minute long freestyle.
While we aren’t certain about all the nitty gritty of Poe’s deal with Mavins, it’s fair to say he has retained creative control of his sound and content. He might be earning more now but he’s far from a sell out. It’s probably just a publishing and distributing deal that at the very most, controls his image but his “They See (Did You See Freestyle)” proves that he hasn’t dumb down his lyrics to increase commercial appeal.
Listen to Poe’s “They See (Did You See Freestyle)” below.
Featured Image Credits: Instagram/ladipoe