Born and raised in North London, the young wordsmith known as Little Simz brings a new level of intelligence, creativity and musicality to the global Hip Hop arena.
At just 20 years of age, nothing could have prepared Little Simz for her meteoric rise over the past year. Charismatic, fierce and lyrically mature, the rapper and musician caught the attention of JAY Z's Life + Times platform in 2013, seeing them premiere her FOURTH mixtape BLANK CANVAS and Simz catapulting into a whole new stratosphere. That recognition subsequently won her an invite to support Schoolboy Q on his Oxymoron tour and saw her tipped to become raps next great hope by Complex, High Snobiety, XXL, Variety, The Independent and The Guardian to name a few.
But even with a growing line of high-profile stars queuing up to collaborate and offers from many a major label, Little Simz decided to head back to her bedroom studio to follow the mixtape with her debut EP E.D.G.E and release it on her own label AGE 101 in the summer of 2014.
The critically acclaimed offering (an acronym for Every Day Gets Easier) which married entirely original soundscapes with Simz' stellar wordplay, flow and content, shunned easily accessible big name features and only featured her Space Age collective, a young clan of North London creatives who Simz grew up with.
After a whirlwind year, which also saw her release three instalments in her AGE 101: DROP Series of mini-EPs, Simz can now count Andre 3000, Snoop Dogg, J.Cole, Kendrick Lamar, Kano amongst many more as fans while her tracks continue to be spun by the likes of Zane Lowe, Gilles Peterson, Huw Stephens, Annie Mac, Mistajam and many more.
Recently winning the 'Breakthrough Act Of The Year' award at the highly respected 10th Annual Gilles Peterson Worldwide Awards and being nominated in two categories at the MOBO Awards (Best Hip Hop Act and Best Newcomer), where she also performed alongside veteran soul singer Candi Staton, all eyes are set on the young leader's next steps.
Following the release of his 2013 acclaimed mixtape, Thee Way Eye See It, hip-hop recording artist and founding member of Pro Era, CJ Fly returns to bring audiences his first commercial, full-length album, FLYTRAP, released on December 9, 2016.
The 14-track LP is a personal offering. Interlacing life experiences, family commentary and original production from Fly himself, the album gives audiences “a taste of savage boom bap evolved that mixes the best of both progressive and traditional worlds,” comments HipHopDX. The project also features production from DF (Travis Scott), SmokeyGotBeatz (Jayrock, Kendrick Lamar), Kirk Knight of Pro Era and Hannibal King (Mac Miller).
Lead single "Now You Know" speaks volumes in 2:40 minutes. “The atmospheric cut features a woozy hook that sandwiches a single, rapid-fire verse from CJ,” raves Billboard, letting listeners know this isn’t going to be the typical CJ Fly offering. The single has garnered well over half a million streams just on Soundcloud.
Raised in Brooklyn by a Jamaican father and Barbadian mother, CJ began writing poetry in the fourth grade and by the seventh grade, was rapping. He attended Edward R. Murrow High School for Communication Arts where he met Joey Bada$$, Powers Pleasant and Capital STEEZ. The four of them would spend their school days cyphering in the auditorium and by 2011 officially formed Progressive Era (Pro Era), the Brooklyn-based hip-hop collective.
After the successful release of Pro Era’s The Secc$ Tape in 2012, CJ was featured on and A&R’d Joey Bada$$’ solo debut, 1999, alongside music industry veteran Jonny Shipes, and received recognition for his reputable storytelling on tracks like “Hardknock” and “Don’t Front.” The crew followed-up with releases PEEP: The aPROcalypse and The Shift which continued to garner buzz for the collective and led to the release of CJ’s debut, Thee Way Eye See It.
With his indisputable charm and lyrical imagery, CJ Fly has positioned himself to be one of the most prominent artists of his generation. Soaring high on FLYTRAP and just getting started, he’ll continue to work on his goal of one day receiving accolades and making history through music.