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Akil Nadir is a Washington DC native who spent his teenage years immersed in the city’s burgeoning hip hop scene, popping in and out of street corner ciphers and performing in night clubs in the historic U Street neighborhood. He gained a reputation for being fiery and unpredictable with a work ethic that defied his age. After graduating from Duke Ellington School of the Arts, he attended North Carolina Central University in Durham―classmates with Foreign Exchange members Phonte and Yahzarah―and earned a Bachelor of Arts in English. Soon after graduation he returned to his hometown and discovered his second passion, education. He has been teaching English in DC ever since―eventually earning a Master of Science in Educational Administration―but has never given up on his first love. He has enjoyed some modest popularity over the years as an independent artist, but he remains one of the capital city’s best kept secrets. His style is a healthy combination of bravado, consciousness and humor. It seems like an impossible balancing act, but he pulls it off effortlessly. In the end, it feels like someone crammed all your favorite emcees into one body, taught it to read and then let it loose on the world.