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Ekelle is a multi-genre artist and songwriter from Toronto. Ekelle rhymes about what she knows best: her real life experience! Money, sex, drama and identity stir together to create a style that she calls Hood Pop - Popular music with a street edge. Hood Pop combines elements of hip hop, pop music and R&B. Ekelle first knew she wanted into the industry when she was a little girl who could not be torn away from watching "Hit List" on YTV every Saturday. Growing up in the 90’s she fell in love with the sounds of TLC, Destiny’s Child, Britney Spears, Puff Daddy, Eminem, NWA and many more acts. At the beginning stages of her career she thought she just had to pick one genre to work with which was hard for her because so many different styles gave her inspiration.
Ekelle has since then branched out and decided to carve out her own sound that represents her eclectic tastes and interests.
Is it a life lesson or just a good time? You can expect both from this sharp shooter. Ekelle loves to candidly rap out her real lived experience and/or play with metaphor and simile as she sings. She puts her songs together with dreamy soundscapes and hard hitting beats that can turn up any party! Noticing a void in the music scene, Ekelle found that no one artist was telling a story that she could fully relate to.
Ekelle was finding that she enjoyed the music being made today, but there were aspects of her story there were simply no songs for, so she decided to create them herself. Her cathartic approach with her newly improved sound began to take her places. Drawing on her experiences with heartbreak, happiness, race, love, sexual orientation and more she definitely has an anthem for you!
Ekelle’s earlier work has been featured in the 6ix Female Cypher put on by Maizy F, Toronto Rappers and the Come Up Show. In 2016 Ekelle had sets at the Durham Caribbean Festival and Afrofest and one of her videos was nominated for a Cut Hip Hop Award. Ekelle's music has played on Carib 101 radio, Maximum FM, and 89.5's Bring Your Eh Game.
Her 2019 EP Dark Skin and Tattoos (DSAT) made a splash and garnered her features in Earmilk, I Am Hip-Hop Magazine, Dope Cause We Said, Flavour Mag, Rapp Fox and a few smaller publications… You’d never know she was fighting a false charge and potentially heading to prison.
In 2015, Ekelle was falsely charged and arrested at Pearson International Airport on her way back from a vacation. This took a detrimental toll on her self esteem, confidence and caused her to be in a constant state of anxiety and depression. Being a stoic Capricorn Ekelle pushed on with creating music, telling no one. In a way, the creation of DSAT kept her alive and gave her something to strive for. Thankfully after many missed work days, unexplained absences, lost friends and being a few grand in debt the charges were dropped. A wave of healing relief washed over Ekelle and pushed her to continue writing from the heart. Surviving a monumental situation like that made the ebbs and flows of the music industry seem a lot more manageable.
Ekelle’s project, Hood Pop showed her growth and range as an artist as she can was able to release all the stirring feelings and revelations that laid inside while she was navigating one of the most difficult times in her life. Ekelle hopes that the honesty in her music will motivate others to share their stories too and to never give up.
The reception of Hood Pop has been amazing. The single 'Dropped' made it's rounds in big blogs and has allowed Ekelle to be featured in Nuit Blanche and a performer for Radio Humber's Band Together. From 2020-2021 Ekelle was signed to Motive Music Canada. In the spring of 2022 Ekelle released her debut album 'Let's Get It'. Songs from the album were featured in Nintendo's Boogie, a Zara campaign and played at the Stanley Cup Finals. Ekelle is currently signed to the Cymba Music Publishing roster.