About Tunde Olaniran
Flint, Michigan native Tunde Olaniran resists easy categorization, having fronted rock and electro-pop projects and worked with dance and hip-hop producers, as well as self-producing his solo recordings, highlighted by the 2015 album Transgressor, in which his multi-octave voice fluidly switches between soulful crooning and smooth rapping. Musically, his work blends electronic beats and synthesizers with distorted guitars and quirky samples (he has a penchant for incorporating non-musical sounds such as birds into his tracks), and sometimes features hard-edged bass reminiscent of U.K. grime. More than anything, his confident, socially conscious songs encourage individuality and nonconformity, and speak to those who feel marginalized by society. Positive word of mouth, an exciting live show, and use of one his songs in a TV commercial helped make 2015's Transgressor a breakthrough success, giving Olaniran a larger international audience for 2018's Stranger.
Tunde Olaniran had a culturally diverse upbringing, spending time in Germany, Nigeria, and England before returning to his native Michigan as an adolescent. In 2003, he made it to the final 15 of the first annual Chicago Idol competition, during which Kanye West was present. Olaniran formed a rock group, Taste This!, who released the full-length Back for Seconds in 2005. An independently released solo recording, Infinite Modulation, appeared in 2006, after which Olaniran formed the electropop duo Stereoluxxx with Brian Preczewski. The duo's self-released album Eros surfaced in 2008. Later that year, Olaniran collaborated with CLP (a hip-hop project of Berlin-based techno producers Chris de Luca and Phon.o), contributing to three tracks on their Supercontinental LP. This led to extensive touring in Europe, as well as a few more guest appearances and collaborations.
Olaniran released The First Transgression, part one of a projected series of five EPs, in 2011, featuring the single "Cobra" as well as its remix by Chris de Luca. The Second Transgression followed in late 2012, including the single "Brown Boy," which later spawned a remix EP. The song was also included on the Yung Archetype EP, Olaniran's debut release on Michigan-based Quite Scientific Records. Instead of continuing the Transgression series of EPs, Olaniran decided to title his next full-length Transgressor, and Quite Scientific released the album (which featured guest appearances by Passalacqua, Invincible, and iRAWniQ) in August of 2015. The attention it received led to touring across Europe and America with theatrical performances featuring colorful costumes and extravagant choreography. After he appeared on songs by the likes of Flint Eastwood ("Push") and Chris Bathgate ("Low Hey"), Olaniran made a full return in 2018 with Stranger, his third proper album. ~ Paul Simpson