Toki Wright

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Toki Wright
Toki Wright Day of Dignity Minneapolis 15860366371.jpg
Toki Wright performing live in 2012.
Background information
Also known asMamadu [1]
Born (1980-03-27) March 27, 1980 (age 42) [2] [3]
Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S. [3]
Genres Hip hop [4]
Years active2003–present

Toki Wright (born March 27, 1980) is an American rapper and music educator from Minneapolis. His debut solo studio album, A Different Mirror, was released on Rhymesayers Entertainment in 2009. [5]


Early life and education

Toki Wright was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States on March 27, 1980. [3] He attended Patrick Henry High School. [6] He later graduated from the University of Minnesota. [7]



Toki Wright met Adonis D. Frazier in 1998, and they formed The C.O.R.E. (Children of Righteous Elevation). [3] The duo's debut album, Metropolis, was released in 2003. [8] As well as being a member of The Chosen Few, [9] Toki Wright has released a number of solo recordings, including A Different Mirror (2009), Black Male (2010), and Faders (2012). [10] In 2014, he released a collaborative album with producer Big Cats, titled Pangaea. [11] In 2017, he released an EP, At the Speed of Life 3. [1]

Styles and influences

Toki Wright stated that "A Different Mirror", the title track from his 2009 album, was inspired by Ronald Takaki's A Different Mirror: A History of Multicultural America , saying: "Unless we look into a different mirror we will only see our own reflection. American history for example might be all apple pies and American flags for many, but the history of people of color in America is filled with poverty [and] hatred". [12]


Toki Wright also launched and led the hip hop studies program at McNally Smith College of Music, which closed in 2017. [13] In 2018, he became Assistant Chair of Professional Music at Berklee College of Music. [14]


Studio albums




Guest appearances

Music videos

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  1. 1 2 Swensson, Andrea (May 18, 2017). "Toki Wright embraces a new identity as Mamadu". The Current. Minnesota Public Radio . Retrieved May 18, 2017.
  2. Wright, Toki (March 27, 2013). "how im spending my birthday". Twitter . Retrieved August 15, 2019.
  3. 1 2 3 4 Schell, Justin (2010). "From St. Paul to Minneapolis, All the Hands Clap for This: Hip Hop in the Twin Cities". In Hess, Mickey (ed.). Hip Hop in America: A Regional Guide . Greenwood Publishing Group. pp.  381.
  4. O'Neal, Sean; Ali, Reyan (October 28, 2009). "Toki Wright is for the children". The A.V. Club . Retrieved August 15, 2019.
  5. Scholtes, Peter S. (June 10, 2009). "Toki Wright: A Different Mirror". City Pages . Retrieved August 15, 2019.
  6. Denman, Jamal (April 3, 2009). "Minnesota college offers first hip hop diploma". Twin Cities Daily Planet . Retrieved August 15, 2019.
  7. Riemenschneider, Chris (May 24, 2009). "Toki Wright: Ready for his close-up". Star Tribune . Retrieved August 15, 2019.
  8. Riemenschneider, Chris (February 6, 2003). "Lords of Discipline: Locals the C.O.R.E. fight for hip-hop's positive side". Star Tribune . Retrieved February 9, 2014.
  9. Schell, Justin (December 10, 2008). "Southside in the house! Illuminous 3 drop new disc at the Entry". Twin Cities Daily Planet . Retrieved February 9, 2014.
  10. Bennett, Bridget; Doar, Spencer (July 17, 2013). "Back in the studio with Toki Wright". Minnesota Daily . Retrieved February 9, 2014.
  11. Reyneke, David (September 25, 2014). "Stream Toki Wright and Big Cats' New Collaborative Album 'Pangaea' In Its Entirety". Potholes in My Blog. Retrieved November 9, 2014.
  12. Horgen, Tom (November 18, 2010). "Music video: Toki Wright's "A Different Mirror"". Star Tribune . Retrieved February 9, 2014.
  13. Ross, Jenna (June 24, 2018). "Hip-hop artist, educator Toki Wright says goodbye to Minneapolis: 'It's pushing me to make decisions'". Star Tribune . Retrieved August 15, 2019.
  14. Swensson, Andrea (June 22, 2018). "Toki Wright talks about relocating to Boston to work at Berklee College of Music". The Current. Minnesota Public Radio . Retrieved August 15, 2019.