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Richard Kylea Cowie (born 19 January 1979), better known by his stage name Wiley, is perhaps the most prolific British producer, rapper and recording artist to emerge in the last 15 years. He who was one of the original founders of the Roll Deep crew, and has made pioneering music
in the fields of jungle, drum & bass and UK garage music. He is credited as the originator of the grime genre, which roared out of east London in the early noughties.
Wiley's earliest recordings date back to 1997, when he featured on pirate radio rapping over jungle beats. In 2000, Wiley joined with "The Hit Squad" garage crew with school friends DJ Target and MC Maxwell D. They achieved some success on the UKG scene  but then decided to combine with rival crew Pay As U Go to become a "super crew," containing the Ladies Hit Squad members plus DJ Slimzee and MC's Major Ace and Plague.

God's Gift, Flow Dan and Riko joined soon after. In 2002 the collective achieved a top 40 hit with "Champagne Dance" Soon after, the crew disintegrated due to individual members havingdiffering ideas of the direction the crew should take. Wiley went on to  form the Roll Deep collective, which included Dizzee Rascal and Tinchy Stryder as MCs. Wiley's vision saw him stripping the generic melodies and sickly harmonies out of garage music and developing the drums and basslines. For a while there was not even a name for the genre he'd helped create, but eventually the label "grime" was the one that stuck. From 2001, Wiley produced a slew of instrumental singles on his WileyKat Record label, the best known being "Eskimo", "Avalanche" and "Ice Rink". The underground notoriety he achieved led to his being offered a recording deal with the legendary XL Recordings.
In 2004, Wiley released his debut album, Treddin' on Thin Ice with hisnew label. Singles from the album included, "Wot Do U Call It ?" which mocked the various names given to his music, and "Pies," which showed his humorous side. Reviews such as in Pitchfork Media made comparisons
between Wiley and his previous labelmate Dizzee Rascal, who had achieved success with Boy in Da Corner the previous year. Alexis Petridis of The Guardian noted the "comically polarised" fanbase Wiley had accrued; "Atone extreme, its sonic experimentation has attracted the kind of people  who run music blogs... [where] lengthy essays are posted on issues as the differentiation between Humean and Kantian views of motivation in the lyrics of Bonnie Prince Billy. At the other extreme, it is favoured by inner-city teens who appear to communicate entirely in an impenetrable mix of street slang and patois." During this period, Wiley occasionally referred to his music as "Eski", short for 'Eskibeat' – the name he initially gave to grime. Also, Wileyreleased mixtapes under the name "Eskiboy". He explained his choice of  name for his music and the continuing theme in his song and album titles such as Treddin' on Thin Ice, partly because he likes the  wintertime, but mainly meaning cold in spirit. Wiley was quoted in conjunction with his "cold" theme: "Sometimes I just feel cold hearted. I felt cold at that time, towards my family, towards everyone. That's why I used those names Many of Wiley's early vinyl releases, such as 'Eskimo', were releasedunder the alias "Wiley Kat", this name was derived from a character in
the cartoon Thundercats. However, the 'Kat' is never officially used byWiley anymore, only being mentioned loosely in some of his songs.  In 2006, Wiley released his second album Da 2nd Phaze on the Boy BetterKnow label. The album consists of 20 tracks that have been put together
by Wiley from the  past three years, including exclusive bonus tracks from God's Gift, Alex Mills and More Fire Crew, the latter signaling the end of the Wiley-Lethal Bizzle feud.
This was followed in by Wiley's third album Playtime is Over on Big Dada Records, which combined artistic control for Wiley with a full scale release on a recognised label. Wiley was thrilled at the opportunity to be allowed to make a grime record as he saw it, and he formed a relationship with the label that outlasted any other he's had in the industry. Playtime is Over was released on the same day as Dizzee Rascal's third album Maths + English, and includes a track "Letter 2Dizzee" which attempts to reconcile the fall out between he and Dizzee.  In May 2008, Wiley found mainstream chart success with the hit single, "Wearing My Rolex". The instrumentation (such as the slower, house style beat and lack of sub bass) caused some unrest within the Grime scene,
as Wiley had publicly vowed that he would never leave grime music to break into the mainstream. In the same month, Wiley released his fourth album entitled Grime Wave, which was described by The Times as a "very pre-Rolex album. With its roots firmly based in the harsh, bass-heavy
rhythms of the scene".
This album was followed by See Clear Now, in October 2008 which includedthe mainstream hits "Wearing My Rolex", "Cash In My Pocket" and  "Summertime". This album took Wiley in a mainstream direction. Despite its success, Wiley has disowned the album as he was "very angry" withthe label, Asylum, about the production and also unhappy about his management at the time.
Now on his own label, Wiley went on to make another album, Race AgainstTime. This was released eight months after his previous album in June  2009, on Eskibeat Recordings and again he had much more creative control, if little time and few resources to organise the release effectively. The album includes the 2009 hit "Too Many Man", featuring Boy Better Know.
In 2010 Wiley released 11 Zip Files for free download on his Twitter page, containing over 200 tracks of old and unreleased music, including tracks from the forthcoming album 'The Elusive'
In early 2011, Wiley finally announced his return to the Big Dada label, and the release of his ultimate album and statement, 100% Publishing. The highly anticipated album 100% Publishing is to be released worldwideon 4th July 2011.
Wiley remains one of the biggest characters and wildest talents in British music. Whether helping younger artists break through (Dizzee, Chipmunk, Tinchy) offloading hundreds of unreleashed tracks on Twitter, rowing with detractors or doling out private insights on the web – he is
always in the studio. Ultimately a workaholic, he's the kind of artist one can imagine making groundbreaking, avant-garde music well into his old age.
A true maverick and an artist in the truest sense of the word, we're lucky to have Wiley, and that he's made the best album of his career to date in 100% Publishing.

Soul Food promoted singles:

Chasing The Art - 04/05/2015
On A Level