Express Yourself: The Genius Of Kwamé

The Genius Of Kwamé

To put it simply, the only way to be the flyest is to be you. Staying straight, when everyone else is going to the left or right is not a painless task.

This brings us to our first spotlight. Let's start out in about 1989. This artist started a fashion movement that was probably praised more at its peak, and dissed harder at its end than, arguably, any other trend in Hip-Hop style history. Introducing "the man we all know and love" the once self proclaimed "Boy Genius"… Kwamé. [Please applause!]

Kwamé burst onto the Hip-Hop scene with his debut album The Boy Genius (1989), and received more than his fair share of props. However, by the time his second CD (A Day in the Life: A Pokadelick Adventure) dropped in 1991, he brought hit records and a fashion craze. Kwamé ushered in his trademark style that took the urban world by storm - polka dots. When the world thinks of Kwamé, they are likely to reference Notorious B.I.G.’s "Unbelievable," where the Brooklyn rapper maliciously said, “Your life is played out like Kwamé, and them f**kin' polka-dots.” Dissed or not, the look was like a fashion epidemic with no cure.

In the early 90’s, the polka dot trend was so hot that even Biggie himself probably had a polka dot shirt or three in his closet at some point. Finding that image would be crazy.

Kwamé - now an accomplished music producer - was also one of the artists who pushed the hair-dye trend of that time forward as well. As his logo suggested, the apostrophe hair-dye design also became one of his signatures. Despite some revisionist history, Kwame’s place in the annals of fashion is in stone. He was bold and uncompromising as any icon should be. Want to be one? I recommend thick skin and prepare yourself for the praise and/or ridicule that may follow.

Here is Kwame in his fashionable rapper prime (see album covers and videos below):

“The Man We All Know And Love”

Peace to Kwame!