Both tracks land ahead of forthcoming 5-track EP ‘Council Estate Confidence’
Follows a successful 2021 inc. debut TV appearance on Channel Dave series, ‘British As Folk’
Hull’s rap pioneer, Chiedu Oraka drops his first release of 2022, double-single ‘North Face’ out 4th March 2022.
Taken from his forthcoming EP, ‘Council Estate Confidence’, the Yorkshire rapper proves his rank amongst the echelons of the UK Rap scene with two compelling tracks showcasing once again his versatility and dynamism. Advocating always for Northern talent, lead track ‘North Face’ is energetic, bouncy and addictive. An anthem in it’s own right, Chiedu’s lyrical prowess shines against a backdrop of reggaeton inspired production; his reflection on where he was before his life in music standing as a powerful message. The music video, which lands alongside, matches in energy and humor. Produced and directed by Lost Tapes Media (Aitch, Niko B, Converse), ‘North Face’s video puts lighthearted visuals to Chiedu’s quick wit, whether in a chicken shop or house party; Chiedu knows how to draw his viewers in.
Second track, ‘For A Minute’ takes a different lane, emotive, sensitive, subtle yet equally as gripping. A new look for Chiedu, this b-side delves into his more romantic nature – one fans have yet to see.
‘These two tracks epitomise the energy that I’m running with this year. I debated for a long time how I was going to attack this year and decided to put my best forward and leave nothing to chance. I believe I am the new face of the north representing a city and county that hasn’t had much light shed on it and the track ‘North Face’ describes that in abundance. ‘For a minute’ is a lane I have never gone down before. I think now is the right time for me to get my LL Cool J on. I needed to put out a song that women can relate too. A song that would make them feel special’ – Chiedu Oraka
‘North Face’ lands following a successful 2021, including the release of his 7-track EP, ‘Ave Life’ which drew attention from Kenny Allstar (1Xtra), Jeremiah Asimiah (Radio One), Grime Shutdown (Spotify) and Charlie Sloth (Apple Music) amongst others. Also making his TV debut on Channel Dave for new series, ‘British As Folk’ and a guest appearance on Channel 4’s ‘Steph’s Packed Lunch’, Chiedu continues to champion his own lane in UK Black Music, his social poetry on the Northern Black experience taking centre-stage as he leads Northern talent to the forefront.
Coined as ‘The Black Yorkshire Man’, Oraka describes his music as the sound of a new working-class Northern England. With his distinctive Yorkshire slang permeating each of his tracks, Oraka has built a solid foundation with singles such as ‘Darcy’, ‘Men Behaving Badly’ and ‘Serve You A Taster’, attracting support from the likes of BBC Radio One, 1Xtra, 6 Music, Kiss FM and more. Oraka’s ‘Helly Hansen’ freestyles have caught the attention of Toddla T, Tom Robinson on BBC 6 Music, Jeremiah Asimiah on BBC Radio One, Ellie Prohan on Kiss FM and Kenny Allstar on 1Xtra who recently supported Chiedu’s latest single ‘Foot Off The Gas’. His 2018 single ‘Darcy’ has picked up over 3M streams, sitting on Grime Shutdown for over 300 days, only the 8th longest track to sit in this position.
One of the key pioneers of the Northern Rap scene, Oraka is single-handedly responsible for creating the Black Music scene in Hull, nurturing and developing talent such as Deezkid and Joe The Third with his label, ‘Room 73’ and collective, Lockdown; bringing the likes of Jammer, Tempa T, Devilman and Manga St Hilare to his city.
His own credits include performing at BBC Big Weekender in 2017, headlining the Humberside Street Sesh in 2019 and 2021 and supporting the likes of Stormzy, Jaykae, Akala, Novelist and Krs One to name a few.
Chiedu was announced last year as one of the artists to be supported by the MOBO Help Musicians Fund, as well as winning the PPL Momentum Accelerator grant. All of this coincided with the drop of further episodes to his ‘Black Kings’ documentary series, an exploration of the Black working class community in Yorkshire. A particular focus being on the tragic death of Christopher Alder and the profound impact this has had in his native Hull. The seven-part series is available to watch on creative platform, Back To Ours here. With his strong freestyles and thought-provoking lyrics, Chiedu Oraka sets the bar high for Northern talent in 2022 and beyond.
IMAGES: Sebastian Garraway
WORDS: Youtan Music: Music Manager & PR