Wiley anticipates one more album before solo retirement to focus on A-List

WILEY 300x300 Wiley anticipates one more album before solo retirement to focus on A ListUnlike the stars of most sporting professions, in the music world there is rarely an age at which someone should retire.

Look at David Bowie, who recently released a largely successful single, Rod Stewart, who continues to fill huge stadiums, and Englebert Humperdinck, who recently represented the UK in the EuroVision Song Contest… that one was perhaps a bad example.

Rappers, on the other hand, seem to drift into a semi-retirement where they might run a record label and feature on the odd track that their artists create – think Dre and Diddy.

It is, unfortunately, even artists in the UK who have been making music and pioneering a genre since its opening days that stop making the solo albums and move on to other, perhaps greener, pastures.

Wiley, also known as Richard Cowie, has recently had chart success with chart-topping songs ‘Heatwave’ and ‘Can you hear me’ and is considered by most as the ‘Godfather of Grime’. He is credited with creating the genre of grime.

In 2002, Cowie made the instrumental track ‘Eskimo’ which is believed to have been the first ever grime beat – essentially the evolution of garage music.

This year, in 2013, Wiley is releasing his penultimate solo album ‘The Ascent’, which will be available on March 11 and is about to release the track ‘Reload’ with Chip – formerly Chipmunk – his former prodigy.

From here, the Godfather will be working solely on his label ‘A-List’, to which he has signed Roll Deep comrades Scratchy, J2K and Manga.

“I’d just like to put this album out then make one more solo album then focus on my record label A List,” he tells me.

But why? With many people in the same boat, Wiley has soundtracked my adolescence, having put out nine albums already and dozens of mixtapes.

He adds: “I don’t want to be 34 and still making music myself, I’d rather go out whilst I’m at the top of my game.”

An admirable stance, perhaps, but little consolation to his legions of fans internationally.

Despite his wishes, I personally hope that Wiley does continue to do what he does best – making music.

You can listen to an exclusive Pantha remix of Wiley’s track ‘Reload’ featuring Chip below.


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  • John Smith

    Consolation, not consolidation. How can an error this basic be made in the independent?

  • stonecold90

    Hopefully his love of the music will mean he will still put stuff out even after retirement. His work rate puts people like Dre to shame.

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