Growing up just a block away from The Notorious B.I.G., watching him go from local kid to rap superstar, “Skyzoo” couldn't help but dream big.
He started making mixtapes in 2002, and in 2005, through a mutual friend, was introduced to Grammy-winning producer 9th Wonder. The North Carolina native was won over by the upstart MC's talents, and readily sent him beats to record over—which would soon become 2006's Cloud 9: The Three Day High, a mixtape that launched Sky into hip-hop's consciousness. His deft wordplay, confident delivery, and vivid imagery were all on display. Fans continued to flock following Cornerstore Classic in 2007 and 2009's Power of Words, each mixtape again showcasing Sky's skillset as a hood poet.
It was September 2009's The Salvation, though, released through Jamla/Duck Down, that solidified the rhymeslinger into an elite class. “It all was leading up to The Salvation,” he says. “That was the album I had been planning since I was nine years old.” Landing at No. 14 on the Billboard Top 200 charts, the critically acclaimed release stood on a cohesive and engaging sincerity that explains the sizable fanbase Sky has cultivated.
Still riding the wave of his debut, Sky returned in July 2010 with Live From the Tapedeck, an album produced entirely by !llmind. The summer of 2011 brought The Great Debater, a free mixtape of album-quality material that Sky treated his fans to as a follow up to two retail releases.
The fanbase Skyzoo has been able to acquire stretches from the street to the workplace to high places, leading to memorable placements: “Popularity” was featured on the seventh season of the HBO hit Entourage; his music was featured in video games NBA2K11 and NBA2K12 (the first artist to be included in the franchise twice), as well as Grand Theft Auto 4: Lost and the Damned; his music has also set the tone for ESPN’s KIA NBA Shootaround; and the rapper has a longstanding relationship with Brand Jordan.
Skyzoo has toured with Ghostface Killah, Raekwon, Pharoahe Monch, Sean Price, and Buckshot, as well as internationally in places like China. He’s collaborated with other respected artists including Pete Rock, Hi-Tek, Jake One, Flo-Rida, Maino, Little Brother, EPMD, N.O.R.E, Wale, Talib Kweli, Ace Hood, Sean Price, and Don Cannon.
With his highly anticipated album Dream Deferred slated for a 2012 release, Skyzoo is focused on continuing to become the ultimate artist, able to make music with a lasting impact.
Listeners can identify with his story; they can see the many sides of themselves in him. They play “For What It's Worth” on their way to a dead-end job. They bump “Necessary Evils” as they hustle. They blare “Speakers On Blast” when they party. No matter the mood, season, or circumstance, Skyzoo offers music to live to.
The true embodiment of a street scholar.