One of the most colorful and fluid rapper-singers to emerge from Chicagoland in the past few years built a foundation for his career on baseball. Tobi Adeyemi, who records and performs as Tobi Lou, started the decade as a professional ballplayer; he was an outfielder for the Joliet Slammers during their 2011 season. He stopped playing baseball in 2012, and turned his attention to music, but grew so tired of being compared to Chance the Rapper and other local rappers (as he’s stated in many interviews) that two years later he traded Chicago for Los Angeles to pursue his new career (originally releasing tracks under the name Wonda), and he now splits his time between the two cities. On his breakout single, 2016’s “Game Ova,” a candy-coated kaleidoscopic pop song on which his velvety vocals glide across shards of juke percussion, Tobi Lou makes sure he sounds like no one else.
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