Jay Electronica

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Jay Electronica
Jay Electronica in 2014 at the Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival
Jay Electronica in 2014 at the Brooklyn Hip-Hop Festival
Background information
Birth nameTimothy Elpadaro Thedford[1]
Born (1976-09-19) September 19, 1976 (age 43)[2]
New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
GenresHip hop
Occupation(s)
  • Rapper
  • record producer
  • songwriter
InstrumentsVocals
Years active1995–present
Labels
Associated acts

Elpadaro F. Electronica Allah[3][4] (born Timothy Elpadaro Thedford; September 19, 1976), known professionally as Jay Electronica, is an American rapper, record producer, and songwriter from New Orleans, Louisiana. He first received widespread attention after the release of his debut mixtape, Act I: Eternal Sunshine (The Pledge), in 2007, and was signed to Jay-Z's record label Roc Nation in 2010. His debut studio album, A Written Testimony, was released in 2020 after years of speculation and delay.

Early life[edit]

Inspired by LL Cool J, Jay Electronica began rapping at the age of 10. He grew up in the Magnolia Projects in New Orleans and attended the all-boys parochial high school St. Augustine High School and was a part of the famed Marching 100 band where he played multiple instruments.[5]

Electronica left New Orleans on January 1, 1996 with the intention of moving to New York City but took a stop in Atlanta. Electronica was struck by "all the now hiring signs because of the Olympics," there he accepted the teachings of Elijah Muhammad via the Five-Percent Nation before moving on to becoming a registered member of the Nation of Islam at its headquarters in Chicago.

Career[edit]

In 2007, Jay Electronica released his first mixtape, Act I: Eternal Sunshine (The Pledge), via MySpace. It became wildly popular, and was downloaded over 50,000 times.[6] That success and his catalog led to Electronica joining the Rock the Bells Tour in 2008.[7]

Later that year, producer Just Blaze and Jay Electronica selected songs for Guitar Center's GAIN project, Fresh Cuts Vol. 3 and included a (previously unnamed) song which Just Blaze named “Exhibit A (Transformations).”[8]

Just Blaze would later (October 27, 2009) debut Exhibit C on Tony Touch's Sirius Radio program[9], where it quickly caught on, making its way to terrestrial radio stations like New York's Hot 97 and spawning artist remixes from MCs AZ, N.O.R.E, Saigon, Joell Ortiz and others.

A bidding war ensued with Jay finally signing (November 12, 2010) with Roc Nation. Though fans and critics anticipated a full-length debut, Electronica's output in the subsequent decade consisted of several collaborations and non-album solo songs.[10]

On February 7, 2020, Jay Electronica announced via Twitter[11] the completion of his album, A Written Testimony, which was recorded over a 40-day period. It was released on March 13, 2020.[12]

Personal life[edit]

Jay Electronica and Erykah Badu were in a relationship for 5 years and have a daughter together, Mars Mekeba, born in 2009.[13]

Jay Electronica had an extramarital affair with Kate Emma Rothschild, the wife of Benjamin Goldsmith, resulting in the breakdown of Ben Goldsmith's marriage. [14]

Discography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bassil, Ryan (October 23, 2013). "The Prestige, The Five Percenters, and Why Jay Electronica Hasn't Released His Debut Album". Vice. Retrieved April 3, 2020.
  2. ^ "Jay Electronica Co-Signs Soulja Boy 'It's Not About Lyrics, It's About Energy - HIPHOPNEWS24-7.COM". YouTube. Retrieved February 20, 2011.
  3. ^ "Credits / A Written Testimony / J A Y E L E C T R O N I C A". Tidal. Retrieved May 6, 2020.
  4. ^ Anon. (2020). A Written Testimony (CD booklet). Jay Electronica. Roc Nation. 51602.
  5. ^ https://www.spin.com/2010/06/jay-electronica-man-or-myth/
  6. ^ Sweeney Kovar (October 10, 2013). "REVISITING… JAY ELECTRONICA'S 'ACT I: THE PLEDGE'". The Boombox. Retrieved March 22, 2020.
  7. ^ "A Tribe Called Quest, Nas, Pharcyde Lead Rock the Bells 2008". Rolling Stone. Retrieved March 12, 2020.
  8. ^ "Guitar Center Helps Employees Release Their Music with Fresh Cuts Vol. 3 Compilation CD". Guitar Player. Retrieved March 12, 2020.
  9. ^ "Just Blaze debuts Jay Electronica's "Exhibit C" and more on Toca Tuesday (Updated w/ lyrics)". Miss Info. Retrieved March 12, 2020.
  10. ^ Thompson, Paul (March 13, 2020). "Your Guide to the Extended Mythology of Jay Electronica, Rap's Great Mystery". Vulture. Retrieved March 27, 2020.
  11. ^ "Album Done ". Twitter. J A Y E L E C T R O N I C A @JayElectronica. Retrieved March 12, 2020.
  12. ^ Klinkenberg, Brendan (March 13, 2020). "Jay Electronica's Debut Album Is Real, and It's Finally Here". Rolling Stone. Retrieved March 13, 2020.
  13. ^ Fiyin, Olowokandi (February 10, 2020). "Meet Mars Merkaba, Erykah Badu's Younger Daughter Who Just Turned 11 in Beautiful Pics". news.amomama.com. Retrieved May 20, 2020.
  14. ^ Beckford, Martin (June 22, 2012). "Jay Electronica: I'll 'come see' you, threatens Ben Goldsmith's rap star love rival". Daily Telegraph. Daily Telegraph. Retrieved March 25, 2020.
  15. ^ Minsker, Evan (February 7, 2020). "Jay Electronica Says His New Album Is Out in 40 Days". pitchfork.com.

External links[edit]