Ohbliv, sometimes known as Brad-Ohblivion or simply Brad-Oh! is somewhat of an enigma, and it's safe to say that if you live any where other than Richmond, Virginia, then you're probably completely oblivious to who he is. A fitting name considering the popularity of the singer/producer extraordinaire. What you didn't know was that Ohbliv is responsible for a lot of the tracks on critically acclaimed mixtapes like Season Premiere and Season Premiere HD from MC Nickelus F, another Richmond native whom he has worked with largely. Ohbliv comes straight out of the dungeons of hip-hop like a Shaolin Monk; while some have used their Kung-Fu for street fighting and increasing personal reputation, he uses his in meditation, strengthening self and uplifting the temple. He is a purists of sorts, and his weapons of choice... an Akai MPC2000xl, a Roland SP-404 and walls full of vinyl.
[soundcloud url="http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/16480699"]Ohbliv - Cacao
[soundcloud url="http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/15509461"]Ohbliv - Jheri Shag
Over the last couple of years Ohbliv has been really busy, gaining props from fellow Richmond artists and abroad. He recently collaborated with up and coming Milwaukee MC, Haz Solo on a smooth track entitled "Pickerupper".*Check out more projects from Ohbliv after the jump*
[soundcloud url="http://soundcloud.com/hazsolo/pickerupper"]Haz Solo & Ohbliv - Picker Upper
The good people involved with the Student Hip-Hop Organization, more notable as SHHO have been working pretty diligently to bring together the hip-hop, visual artist and other creative communities by connecting colleges through out Northern, Central and Southeastern, VA. Last year they presented "Soulphonic", a mix that was heralded as
What Richmond sounded like sonically
by the organization.
[soundcloud url="http://soundcloud.com/shho/01-soulphonic"]Ohbliv - Soulphonic Beat Tape
A little gem entitled Yellow Gold From Nickelus F and Ohbliv dropped at the turn of the year but, unfortunately, went under the rap radar. Also presented by SHHO, Yellow Gold is the kind of album that people will probably re-discover in a few years and say "Damn...this joint was raw!", re-igniting the hype it should have gotten on it's release. Ironically, the concept behind the entire project was creating classic material.
[soundcloud url="http://soundcloud.com/shho/nickelus-f-produced-by-ohbliv-what-to-believe"]Nicklus F & Ohbliv - What to Believe
As Ohbliv continues to grow as a musician, two things are for sure: he will certainly earn his place in the lexicon of unique musicians that VA has spawned and has definitely earned his place amongst Richmond's avant-garde. Another thing that is certain is that whether or not you're convinced by this article, give his music a listen and throw it out like old underwear or even pass on listening at all, he's not stopping at this because he's in it for the love.
...I don't give a fuck about what other people be saying. I'm my own worst critic and I know some of the stuff I put out isn't 'industry quality,' but what I'm trying to go for is that rawness, and that purity. I think that's what sets me apart. What I'm trying to do is speak to people's souls. I'm trying to change how people listen to hip-hop music. Everything doesn't have to sound crisp and clean. Everything doesn't have to be right on point. My style is sloppy, on beat, off beat. What I choose to put out there, people may not feel or even appreciate, but it's not made for them. It's made for the people who can hear it. I just try to keep it honest and soulful.
Shaolin Monk, remember? Better hop on the train early.