Rapper Tobechuckwu Dubem Nwigwe is from the SWAT: South West Alief, Texas. Make no mistake though, Nwigwe is also thoroughly Nigerian and you can hear the merging of these two worlds in his music.
As a rapper, he is a storyteller for his home town which includes both Alief and Nigeria, his parents’ place of origin. Aiming to “make purpose popular” the rapper describes his coming out of the “slums” to live a life of purpose in God with his family.
Tobe, like most, had a rough beginning. In his song “Reality,” he reveals that his “Mama ain’t really have no salary” and “[they] was five kids living in one room.” Despite this, Nwigwe was able to attend the University of North Texas and was a star starting player on its football team. He was actually “one of the few players on the UNT roster that [had] flashed NFL talent.” Unfortunately, a foot injury ended that career, but it led him to begin using his gift for freestyling. Believing the redirection was from God, he set out to reach the youth of Alief so that they could discover their God-given purpose. It has made him a viral sensation, especially during the height of 2020’s racial tensions with the song “I Need You To” about Breonna Taylor’s murder. “Eat,” also released in 2020, highlights his newfound fame.
Similar to other music videos by Nwigwe, “Eat” features Fat, his wife, Nell, his friend and music producer, his daughter, and dancers all dressed in mint. In between humble bragging and letting us know that he’s “bout to be on a first-name basis with Beyonce,” Nwigwe infuses his Nigerian heritage. To those that once made fun of his name, he clarifies that “Tobechukwu Dubem Nwigwe is [his] correct name.” Referencing a funny Igbo insult his mom would say he yells, “Otologbabukwegi on your head.” Altogether, Tobe represents both sides of his world and it is making a difference.
Find Tobe and his music below:
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