TILT Spotlight: Chima Anya
Born to a Nigerian research scientist & a Romanian economist, Chima Anya spent the first 10 years of his life in Glasgow giving rise to his striking accent. In ’95 he moved to Oxford when his father started working at the prestigious university. When asked about where he calls home, having travelled so extensively and being of dual heritage, Chima states:
“I rep Oxford, because that is the city I became a person in.”
At the worrying age of 17, Chima had secured a place at medical school in Birmingham. By this point his self-certified PhD in Hip-Hop had been completed and he was simultaneously honing his craft while completing his degree. Upon graduation at the age of 23, Chima quickly relocated to London where he continues to work as a doctor while moonlighting as a hip-hop artist.
“The doctor” made his first step onto the national stage as one of the UK’s premier MCs with his first solo mixtape release ‘Higher Ground’. The mixtape instantly drew acclaim from prominent DJs on the UK’s most influential radio stations such as Radio 1, 1xtra, Kiss and Choice FM as well as international attention. The tape includes some incredible early productions from Hudson Mohawke, you should definitely check that out!
‘Higher Ground’ was followed by the independent release of the album ‘New Day’ (on his own imprint Phoenix Down). Despite minimal promotion and a demanding work schedule, the album made multiple end of year “Best of” lists (including iTunes
Best of 2010 Hip-Hop alongside artists such as Kanye West and Big Boi). 2010 also saw numerous high-profile international performances across Europe and as far afield as Bahrain.
Having shared stages with legends such as Amp Fiddler, KRS-One, Flava Flav, Jay Electronica, Brother Ali, Wale and Homeboy Sandman, it’s no surprise that when asked, Chima states his greatest joy comes from the live show.
Below you’ll find just a few of our favorite Chima Anya cuts, including his latest “You’ll See” which is an intricate exploration of beauty on Mount Kimbie’s hypnotic electronic “Before I Move Off”. Go ahead!
Next up is “Let It Hang”, my personal favorite of Chima Anya’s. He says about this song, “Never understood why rappers rapped about big asses so much until I did one myself. Best song I’ve ever written.”
Finally, I couldn’t leave you without “I Made It (That Love)”. Triumph engulfs this song in the best way possible, with love. Enjoy!