Hondred Percent got attracted to the lyricism of Jay-Z after his brother introduced him to rap culture and the songs of legendary hip hop musicians like The Notorious B.I.G., Tupac and Missy Elliot. Despite his love for rap music, he never wrote rap in high school as others did; he just loved to rap along to the songs.
It was during his undergraduate studies at the University of Zululand in South Africa that Hondred Percent developed his craft in poetry and rap, after he was “mesmerized” by the poems of American poet and rapper Saul Williams, who is known for his blend of poetry and alternative hip hop.
“I was introduced to spoken word poetry through a poetry club on campus. I fell in love with it and once whilst listening to music at a friends place, got introduced to a poem titled Yvonne by the South African, Tumi (now known as Stogie T) which made me say to myself, ‘I wanna do that!’” he said.
Upon returning to Ghana from South Africa in 2011, Hondred Percent started performing as a poet/spoken word artiste. He was the Ehalakasa Slam champion in 2014 and 2015. After performing for a while, he realized that some of his poems when recited along with a beat made beautiful rap music. This, however, propelled him to come out with his debut rap/spoken word album titled WTF? in 2017. WTF? is a thought provoking album laced with humor, word play and Ghanaian imagery
Hondred Percent is also set to launch his first poetry book titled Lɔgɔligi Locomotion on November 6, 2021. Lɔgɔligi Locomotion is a collection of 100 poems on Ghana, love, Christianity, life and women. The book also showcases poetry from the beginning of his journey as a spoken word artist to date.
As a proud Christian and believer, Hondred Percent’s reveals that he is mostly inspired by God on what to write. “God enables me to notice things in my environment and lights the fire of creativity within to package what I have witnessed in thought in poetry,” he said.
“I’m also inspired by Mufasa; he is an amazing Kenyan based poet who challenges me with his craft. His penmanship is truly a God-given gift. Jay-Z, Worlasi, Tumi, Black Thought, Tobe Nwigwe, Timbaland the list is endless with regards to inspiration,” he added.
Hondred Percent, however, sees poetry as a powerful tool for the transformation of society.
“It’s the power. There is power in words. Arrange them in a specific manner and they cause people to manifest emotions,” he said. “It’s like magic, just that each line, word or sentence is a spell. Written or spoken, poetry has a way of inspiring, silencing, healing and transforming people.”
He is also committed to helping other Ghanaian poets improve their craft by creating platforms, organizing workshops and having intellectual discussions to improve the knowledge of artists and grow the industry, through MiCheck, an organisation he co-founded in 2015.
While planning on releasing second album next year, Hondred Percent hopes that the poems and songs he makes will continue to inspire people.
“I hope my art causes others to be themselves. I hope it gets people to look at things differently. Poetry or the music I make is not art I see people consuming in the masses per say. For those that like the art I make, I aspire for them to see the beauty in the world and in words. In simple words I want my art to add value to their lives.”
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