Olubowale Victor Akintimehin (born September 21, 1984), better known by his stage name Wale , is an American rapper. He rose to prominence in 2006, when his song “Dig Dug (Shake It)” became popular in his hometown. Wale became locally recognized and continued recording music for the regional audience. Producer Mark Ronson discovered Wale in 2006 and signed him to Allido Records in 2007. While signed to that label, Wale released several mixtapes and appeared in national media including MTV and various Black-American-focused magazines. A song called “Ridin’ in That Black Joint” was featured in the popular video game Saints Row 2’s soundtrack in 2008.
In 2008, Wale signed with Interscope Records for $1.3 million, and his debut album Attention Deficit was released in 2009 with the singles “Chillin”, “Pretty Girls”, and “World Tour”. The album, although under-shipped, received positive reviews from critics. In early 2011, Wale signed with Rick Ross’ Maybach Music Group, where members of the label released a compilation album, Self Made Vol. 1 on May 23, 2011. His second studio album, Ambition was released November 1, 2011, with mixed reviews. His third studio album, The Gifted, was released on June 25, 2013, to mainly positive reviews; it debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. His second Billboardnumber one album The Album About Nothing was released on March 31, 2015.
In an interview with Flavorwire, Wale said that he incorporates elements of go-go in his music. Cyril Cordor of allmusic described go-go as “a more raw, percussion-driven offshoot of disco” that originated in the Washington, D. C. area. Wale’s early singles that were played primarily in his local metropolitan area heavily sampled 1990s go-go records. Reviewing Attention Deficit, David Jeffries of allmusic remarked that Wale had a “post-Kanye, post-Lil Wayne, alternative-meets-hardcore style” and commented that Wale’s single “Chillin’”, which featured Lady Gaga, “crafts an instant floor-filler out of a sample from the 1969 hit ‘Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye’”
Wale teamed up with Philadelphia retailer Ruvilla, and ASICS for a product called “Bottle Rocket” Asics Gel Lyte III in 2015. In 2016, he teamed with ASICS again with a product that features gold and shades of black and blue.