Skillz Becomes Artist In Residence At University Of Richmond

When he named his 1996 debut From Where???, Mad Skillz knew he was putting his city of Richmond, Virginia on the Hip-Hop map. More than 20 years later, following acclaimed work with J Dilla, The Beatnuts, Large Professor, DJ Jazzy Jeff, and others, Skillz is one of his city and state’s pioneers in the genre.

It makes perfect sense then that the creator of the yearly “Rap-Ups” is welcomed to the University of Richmond. Beginning in January of 2018, Skillz will be “Artist In Residence” there, according to AllHipHop. Reportedly, Skillz’ role will include assisting Professor Erik Nielson in a Hip-Hop class (“The Voice of Hip Hop in America”) for all students. The famed “Ghostwriter” MC tells AHH that the city campus is the very place where the man born Shaquan Lewis got his stage name. After touring with Jeff for years, Skillz has recently stepped front-and-center as an accomplished DJ.

Nas, 9th Wonder, Bun B, Young Guru, and fellow Virginia representative (and Skillz collaborator) Pharrell Williams are three other examples of Hip-Hop artists who have moved into academia.

In other Virginia Hip-Hop news, this week N*E*R*D released their first video in years, a collaboration with Rihanna.

#BonusBeat: This week’s TBD argues that ghostwriters can actually be necessary:

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