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Penn State Rapper U Talks with OS

Over the course of this year, it seems that a large influx of rappers or hip hop collectives have been emerging from Penn State’s ranks. One rapper, Ugochukwu Onyiata, or as he goes by, The ‘U’, has recently caught my attention. I witnessed this man spit his stuff on several occassions, including this past Friday, and he has yet to disappoint me. I booked a meeting with ‘U’ which went down as follows: we played Madden; listened to some new, unreleased tracks of his; watched Duke vs. Clemson; discussed Lil’ Wayne; and then finally did the interview. Here’s the last part:

Onward State: Why did you start rapping?

‘U’: I always had a passion for music and poetry, and after doing stand-up comedy for a number of years, I definitely wanted to explore rap to see if I was actually any good. Once I started, I couldn’t stop.

OS: How would you define your rapping style in terms of lyrics and flow?

‘U’: Backpack-Hipster is probably what I’ll be labeled as because all of my current favorite artists like Drake, Wale, Kid Cudi, Big Sean, J. Cole, and Wiz Khalifa are all thrown in that category.

OS: What hip hop artist(s) influence you the most?

‘U’: Nas, Lupe Fiasco, Wale, Kid Cudi, Biggie, Fabolous, Lloyd Banks, and Kanye West.

OS: How have you balanced being a college student and your hip hop career?

‘U’: It was easy at first because nobody really knew I rapped, and I didn’t perform live that much. It got challenging the better I got and the more my following grew. However, I’m great at managing time, and when its time for school work and studying, it gets done!

OS: As a rapper, you work with a number of different producers, including one here at Penn State. How have you enjoyed this variety?

‘U’: It’s amazing! They have allowed my sound to grow, mature, improve, and enhance to levels I thought were unimaginable.

OS: You have a documentary in the making, can you tell me about what that will entail?

‘U’: It’s a three to five part documentary that will basically consist of interviews, footage from studio sessions, performances, and chronicle the journey from my last mixtape, V-3 to my upcoming mini-album #NoDaysOff EP.

OS: What has been your favorite recording and/or performing experience?

‘U’: My favorite recording experience was when I produced in a professional studio in Brooklyn, NY. For performing, I love performing at La Casa Blanca here at Penn State.

OS: Obviously you sweat and shit swag, can you tell me how ‘U’ gets dem hotties?

‘U’: I don’t really do anything out the ordinary when I talk to broads. I crack a lot of jokes and I am a good listener because women love to hear themselves. I’ve never had a problem getting girls, but rap has definitely helped (laughs).

OS: You’re a senior, so what’s your next move? Do you intend to make rapping a career?

‘U’: I plan to work for two years at the most, and then plunge full force into music. I finally found a manager, and definitely will be assembling a promotion team to help me take the next step.

OS: Where can anyone download your music?

‘U’: You can download my mixtapes on, my blog/website, or my facebook music page: The ‘U’.

OS: Would you rather go on a date with Charlie Sheen or punch your mom in the face?

‘U’: (laughs) Date with Charlie Sheen, he is freakin’ hilarious. A drunk weekend with him would probably change my life.

Don’t forget the cocaine, heroine, meth, Robotussin, and horse tranquilizer. And porn stars. Keep an eye out for ‘U’s documentary, EP, and future Penn State performances.

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About the Author

Ryan Kristobak

Hailing from Lebanon, PA, I am a senior majoring in print journalism. Things I enjoy include lovesacs, denim, mullets, Fight Milk, Jonny Moseley, and "hang in there" kitten posters. Things that bother me include "fun" sized candy bars (not fun), fish, shoobies, wet door knobs, baby leashes, and Jake Lloyd.

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