Introducing B Wise… An African-Australian Hip Hop artist, who was also known as “The Benchman”, but is now ready to get off the bench and play in the major leagues. His infectious new single, ‘Prince Akeem’, produced by Raph Lauren of Jackie Onassis, is a glimpse of what’s to come. After opening up for Jackie O in November, Raph was so impressed by Wise’s live show that he hit him up the next day offering his production services. The result, an upbeat colourful track named after Eddie Murphy’s character in Coming To America (B Wise’s favourite film growing up), which sees B visualizing a life on the throne, complete with lavish parties and royal rose-bearers preceding his every move.
As he tells it, a childhood story lead B Wise (aka James Iheakanwa) to the premise of ‘Prince Akeem’. The son of a country girl from Stockinbingal and a dad from Nigeria, Wise spent his early years bouncing between Sydney and rural NSW before his family settled in the city’s South-Western Suburbs, where he still calls home. While living in the country, Wise suffered bullying and racism for having different coloured skin in a predominantly white school. His folks tried to explain it was out of jealousy, by telling Wise it was because he came from Nigerian royalty. A slight fib, but one that gave B Wise a sense of African pride and courage, a feeling he still carries today.
‘Prince Akeem’ serves as the second offering from B Wise’s upcoming debut album due for release later this year. The first single, ‘Like You’, garnered Wise the attention of tastemaker media such as Rolling Stone Australia, Pilerats and ACCLAIM Magazine. B Wise is currently crafting the full length with production coming from Nic Martin (360, Seth Sentry, Pez), Raph Lauren (Jackie Onassis, One Day), Momo (Diafrix), Pro/Gram (Bliss n Eso, Hau) and Colourd Noyz, just to name a few.
An energetic live performer, he has previously supported the likes of G-Eazy, Souls Of Mischief, Jackie Onassis, Diafrix, David Dallas, Kid Cudi, GZA (Wu-Tang) and The Cool Kids gaining new fans whenever he touches the stage.
“We’re hoping to hear loads more from this Sydney MC in the not-too-distant future” – Rolling Stone Australia