Name : Smokie (Smoke-A-Thon)
Genre : Rap
Year formed : 1998
Hometown : Chicago
Website : N/A
Myspace : www.myspace.com/smokeathon
Label Type : Indie
Featured Track : Flawless
Smoke-a-Thon was raised on the Southside of Chicago, Il. This area is notoriously known as the “Wild Hunits”. As a child and adolescent, young Smokie was enthralled and engrossed with street life. As a child he would routinely sneak of his house just to watch the comings and goings of the pimps, pushers, and streetwalkers. Many days found him punished for his disobedience. The backdrop and soundtrack to the streets which hypnotized him so much was hip hop/ rap music.
As Jabari listened to N.W.A., the D.O.C., Tupac, B.I.G., Nas and Jay-Z, he was convinced that this was the greatest form of music created. An avid fan, he followed the carriers of the artists he admired. As weeks turned into months, which then transformed into years, tragedy struck the hip-hop community. Tupac Amaru Shakur was gunned down in Las Vegas. Subsequently, six months later, the Notorious B.I.G. met the same fate in L.A. As Smokie mourned the deaths of these rap titans, Smoke-a-Thon was born. He became a combination of all the greats he enjoyed listening to. He also injected his street knowledge, in addition to his writing skills, to become one of the most prolific artists from the Chicagoland area.
He attended Alabama A&M University, and in no time at all had the entire student body rocking to his early songs. It was on this very campus, where Jabari honed his skills, by participating in every talent show, opening for any act that came to the University to perform, and even setting up equipment in the middle of campus to perform for anyone who would listen. Smoke-a-Thon graduated from Alabama A&M University, with a Bachelor’s degree in English/ Business Management. Unfortunately, that “street life”, that mesmerized him as a child, caught a hold to him as a teenager, and young adult.
He had some small legal troubles that proved to be a minor setback. Determined to win, Smoke-a-Thon triumphed over that situation, by coming home to Chicago, and creating his first mix tape entitled “The Passion Vol.1″, although he garnered critical acclaim for his effort, he felt as though he could have come a little harder. So he did. After hurdling a series of obstacles and pitfalls, Smoke-a-Thon emerged with the classic “Street Album”entitled “The Passion Vol.2″. In this effort Smoke showcases his obviously enhanced skills over a myriad of tracks, both industry and original. In the words of the artist, “The first Passion was like “Ready to Die” (Notorious B.I.G’s debut album), with more attention focus on the lyrics, rather than the tracks. Whereas, “Passion Vol.2″ was more along the lines of “Life After Death” (B.I.G’s second album) where the focus was to make a marriage of the tracks and lyrics.
I wanted to showcase my passion for making music. And that he did! With Vol.2, Smoke-a-Thon takes you on a trip within his mind. He is currently promoting “The Passion Vol.2″ throughout the Chicago land area, as well as in the Southern region. He is a Midwest phenomenon, signed to Diamonds and The Ruff Entertainment Inc., as well as, the publishing company 2 Smokin Barrels Entertainment. Keep your eyes open, and your ears to the street, and you will come across one name with two hyphens Smoke-a-Thon.