T.K.O. The People’s Champ was an elite emcee from the infamous 40 projects, where tomorrow is not promised.
Raised up around drugs and violence, he fell into a life of crime at a very young age and spent many years in and out of correctional facilities.
During those bids, only two things kept him focused…boxing and rapping. Boxing allowed him to release pent-up emotions and rapping was a mental escape from the harsh realities of his life.
His talents for boxing and rapping were absolutely undisputed, hence his moniker, ‘T.K.O. the People’s Champ“.
K.O. competed in various boxing tournaments in the prisons where he served time. He completely dominated his adversaries and became infamous in prison for his knock out punches.
When he wasn’t in the yard exercising and training for bouts, he was up until the wee hours of the morning writing rhymes in his cell or battling anybody that challenged him.
In 2013 he returned from his last prison stretch determined to push his music to the next level and live a better life for himself and his young daughter, Hayley.
K.O. soon reconnected with his longtime friend and fellow emcee, Giovanni Snow. Snow already had two mixtapes under his belt and his #SUPAVALID music movement had a solid following.
K.O. continued to write rhymes and freestyle to his favorite beats. Ready to share his music with the world, he began visiting the Hall of Fame Studios in Jamaica, Queens where he and Snow recorded with super-engineer, Teardropz. “Every time he stepped into the booth he burned it down! You could feel the passion and hunger in his rhymes.”, said Tearz.
K.O.’s rugged delivery combined with Snow’s slick word-play and infectious hooks proved to be a perfect combination.
They went on to record several tracks together, most notably the certified classic, “Do It Again“. K.O. annihilated this track! As soon as the bass drops he unloads his rapid-fire into your eardrums and doesn’t stop until the last ad lib.
By the end of 2014 #SUPAVALID music had built a huge buzz! K.O. and Snow were performing in venues all around the metropolitan area while working on their individual projects.
T.K.O.’s music was raw and uncut. It lured you into his world, where crime does pay and pain provokes success. His oxymoronic bars told vivid stories and foreshadowed the tragedies that street life brings, while also dropping jewels and addressing social issues in the community.
On one of his most popular tracks, “Black Amerikkka“, K.O. showcases this versatility. The track covers NAS’ “One Mic” instrumental. 5 minutes and 56 seconds of pure bars, no hook.
The first verse is a letter of apology to his daughter for not being more present in her life. On the second verse he bluntly discusses police brutality, senseless murders and the life-long oppression of black people.
In the fall of 2015, T.K.O. The People’s Champ was murdered. At the time of his passing he was working on his highly anticipated debut album “Loyalty Ova Royalty“.
His untimely death left his family, friends, fans and peers in the music industry heartbroken. So much promise and potential cut short by the same senseless violence he rapped about.
Sleep in Peace, Rest in Power T.K.O. The People’s Champ. You are deeply missed and forever loved.
L O N G L I V E T H E C H A M P.
T.K.O. The People’s Champ video for his “So Seductive” Freestyle:
2 thoughts on “T.K.O. the People’s Champ”
I really appreciate this article. Eloquently written…💪🏾💯 RIP T.K.O
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