Rising Chicago rapper Vic Mensa continues to make waves in his career as he is now signed to Jay-Z’s Roc Nation, announced yesterday. In a tweet from Mr. Carter himself, he welcomed Mensa into the Roc family that features artists, athletes, publishing, and management.
In an interview with Justin Credible on Los Angeles’ Power 106, Mensa made note of the deal when he released the iTunes singles for “U Mad” featuring Kanye West, which had the Roc Nation copyright in the liner notes. Vic also confirmed his upcoming album will be entitled Traffic with a release date to be determined.
Mensa is best known for being the former frontman for Kids These Days, which blended Jazz with Punk influences, Hip-Hop, and nostalgic covers. After the release of their 2012 album Traphouse Rock, the band disbanded when Mensa focused on a solo career. He is also a member of the Chicago music collective SaveMoney, which also include Chance The Rapper, Caleb James, Alex Wiley, and Kembe X. He is also notable for his guest verse on “Cocoa Butter Kisses” from Chance’s breakthrough mixtape Acid Rap. The momentum from that verse propelled him to work on his solo debut mixtape, Innanetape, which received critical acclaim.
He has since been on tour internationally with Disclosure, expanding his sound and audience with the singles “Down On My Luck,” “Wimme Nah,” and “Feel That.” His exposure caught the attention of a mentor in Kanye West, who had Mensa featured on “Wolves”, which is expected to be on West’s upcoming album, So Help Me God. With Kanye’s co-sign and eye for talent, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Roc Nation would have their eyes on Mensa; however, it usually does.
In an interesting story from Roc Nation executive Lenny S, it took months for him to persuade Mensa to join the label. Lenny made it clear that the label “cared about making the connection with music/culture & parenting with a company who understands their vision/art” [Billboard]. Mensa joins J. Cole, Jay Electronica, Rita Ora, Rihanna, and DJ Mustard to the ever-growing roster of artists on Shawn Carter’s label.
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