iLLPHONiCS is more than a band, it's an identity. All five individuals in the band are founding members, and since 2006, they've consistently made some of the most groundbreaking music that has come out of the Midwest. From Mound City (St. Louis, MO), iLLPHONiCS is one of the few bands that can tastefully blend rap vocals with strong musical composition and live performance.
It's the hybrid of different musical styles and cultures that makes iLLPHONiCS such an undeniable force. With the kind of energy that can keep a crowd moving, iLLPHONiCS has the power to hold an audience's attention from the first note until the last.
Having shared the stage with artists like the Roots, RJD2, and Lupe Fiasco, as well as performing at numerous festivals, including Wakarusa, iLLPHONiCS are ready to connect with listeners as diverse as their sound.
After relocating to Staten Island, New York from Brooklyn, NY at 8 years old, lead emcee/band CEO, Saidu Ezike felt like an outcast. He had a Crown Heights, Brooklyn mentality attending Staten Island elementary, middle and high schools. As a result, his musical influences were very diverse, ranging from Korn to Ben Folds Five to Limp Bizkit to Jay-Z. His childhood friends were also diverse in race, ethnicity, class and life experience. Throughout his life, he discovered his many talents including the hurdles in track and field and academics. Though these talents brought him to the prestigious Cornell University, he continued searched for his identity. While at Cornell, he met Kenan Goggins, a member of the track team and an emcee who introduced him to hip-hop.
The rest was history…
Saidu continued to perfect his craft by studying emcees such as Jay-Z, Big L and Nas. After being dissatisfied with his life as a school teacher, he decided to pursue music simultaneous to teaching. After about a year as a solo artist, he sought out to create the All-Star band that would make a lasting mark on the music industry. After a number of roster changes, trials and tribulations, Cross Culture was formed. Bringing on the likes of top-notch musicians and vocalists, Cross Culture quickly is taking the NYC scene by storm. High-energy performances matched with the vivid story-telling and lyricism of Saidu has set this band apart from many others. The momentum continues to remain strong for this group of highly-motivated individuals as they released their single "Rock All Night" in 2017 to much praise. The sky’s the limit for this group as they look forward to taking both the national and international scene by storm in the near future.
I give the people organic music. Good for any diet.