Meet BLKBOK – the Detroit native, with perfectly painted nails and Troubadour tattoos. This piano prodigy has been making music behind the scenes for some time – he hit the road with Justin Timberlake shortly after college and has since been the go-to for countless other artists including Rihanna, John Mayer, Demi Lovato, Timbaland, Duran Duran, Ciara and many others on their tours. All the while, BLKBOK was composing scores of unfinished piano segments, collecting digital dust on a hard drive as the tour and travel life continued and, like all of us, then 2020 hit.
As a result of the pandemic, the isolation, the elevation of Black Lives Matter movement; BLKBOK was inspired by these current events to sit down and create an incredible body of work, which will be released later this year. Though his original music is soon to follow, in the same spirit of rappers working through their creative journeys via mixtapes of mashups and collaborations, BLKBOK is releasing CVRART, a neo-classical, hip hop inspired take on some of the most recent viral hits.
Born and raised in Detroit’s inner-city, BLKBOK (born Charles Wilson III), grew up in a music-filled house. While his parents and siblings were all musically active in church, little Charles could always be found walking his chubby fingers up and down the piano keys. His mom had no choice but to nurture her baby’s keyboard obsession and by the time he was 8, BLKBOK was an acclaimed piano prodigy, winning statewide accolades and college-level competitions. When it came to music, most of the kids he grew up with pursued hip-hop, adopting dope rapper names. However, it’s no coincidence that Charles chose the name BLKBOK, which echoes that of one of the greatest pianists and composers of all time. The tag is also an apt reflection of the elements that have contributed to the artist’s identity and symbolizes his colorful journey from pop and hip-hop culture to his present-day neo-classical debut album.