MILWAUKEE — Milwaukee rapper Solowke, who has more than four million song views on YouTube, was recently released from a 26-month prison stint and is coming out of the gates hot with his music. But before we get into the music, a fun fact about the Milwaukee rapper.
He has a TMJ4 tattoo on his arm. He reps Milwaukee hard with all his ink. Solowke also has the Milwaukee Tool logo, the Milwaukee skyline, and a few other Cream City-inspired tattoos on his arm.
As to why Solowke has TMJ4 ink, "I like Milwaukee," he said
Back to the music. He has already released a few songs but has big plans for the future. Solowke said he has an EP dropping in May that will have no features. Plus, he is trying to collaborate with an old classmate and 'Mo Bomba' rapper, Sheck Wes, on a music video during Milwaukee's Juneteenth parade.
In the next year or so, Solowke said he wants to sign an artist-friendly deal worth at least $1,000,000 that allows him to keep his royalties.
Outside of music, Solowke was recently mentoring some youth on how to avoid the same kind of trouble he got into. It is the kind of advice he said he wished he had when he was younger.
"Trying to help a few young adults look at things different before it's too late. Kind of what happened to me. Cause, you know, when I was their age, when I was 17 (or) 18, I ain't had nobody tell me how to prevent my mistakes and things like that. I really thought I knew it all," he said.
It was a round table discussion at Milwaukee OATS, a screen printing and art movement, located in Milwaukee's Bay View neighborhood. Milwaukee OATS hosts an internship program for teens who have gone to juvenile detention centers or had other run-ins with the law. It teaches them workforce development skills and financial literacy among other things.
It's an easy-going peer-to-peer conversation.
"You really rather hear it from your peers versus your grandmother," Solowke said.
Since being out of prison, he said he has been feeling great.
"Don’t nobody tell me when I wake up no more," he said. "I done had 2,000 donuts already. I can't get up and get them where I was at, you know."
In an interview with DJ Jerry, he said that he went to prison after being charged with possession of a couple pounds of marijuana, fleeing, and bail jumping.