04.14.2017People

Kevin Liles and London On Da Track Help Young Freestyler Take His Music Journey to the Next Level

By: Jessica Cecile Thorpe
The #Freestyle50 Challenge spotlights next rapper generation.
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Just a few months ago, Edward Seay was putting in his normal Tuesday shift at a local car dealership in Annapolis, Maryland. The 29-year-old clocked in, talked to mechanics, and detailed cars—same as any other day. Seay counted down the hours one-by-one until his shift would end. Though his hands were elbow-deep in a Subaru, his mind was on the evening ahead. That 13th of December he'd drive down to the local radio station in Baltimore WERQ-FM (92Q) for another regional rap competition. It wasn’t his first time at the playground, but this time felt different in his mind. Seay, or as his friends called him, Tre’ Da Kid, was on a mission to stake his claim in the hip-hop game.

Tre' grew up surrounded by music: his father was a D.J. and while other kids went outside to play, he was already putting in work on the side, learning how to write lyrics and work the beats. By age six, he was putting on shows around school lunch tables.

“I've been making music since before I learned to tie my shoes, just waiting for a moment like this one,” said Tre’.

He'd been expressing his musical interest and building his local fan base through online and social channels for some time now, releasing digital mixtapes through his own label, Raw Entertainment.

With that Tuesday finally winding down at the shop, Tre' clocked out and headed to the local Baltimore radio station. The determined rapper had always had the support of his parents throughout his musical journey, but just months before the day of the regional rap contest his mother had passed away, and his musical inspiration, his father, lay battling Alzheimer's—unaware of the culminating moment. Still, Tre' felt their support as he stood there holding the microphone in the sound proof room. Freestyling his way, he let the lyrics fly—winning the regional contest and a spot to compete against six other finalists in Atlanta, Georgia.

Tre’ Da Kid

Tre Da Kid performing at #Freestyle50 cypher event in Atlanta

Days later at the Opium Nightclub in Atlanta, the adrenaline was pumping, the crowd pulsing, the beat begging to hear his voice. The crowd screamed and it was Tre’s turn in the spotlight. He pulled up the mic and spit out the first words: “My name’s Tre’ Da Kid representin’ Maryland.” The crowd sat at the edge of their seats for more.

One by one, finalists were eliminated. Then he heard his name. The crowd screamed. Like a reflex, he threw his hands up in victory and pride.

“This is for my mother and for my city,” thought Tre’ as he claimed his moment.

After defeating thousands of entrants, Tre’ Da Kid, the 29-year-old Annapolis rapper, was named the winner of the #Freestyle50 Challenge, the national talent competition in search of the best freestyler in the nation. The contest, inspired by Verizon’s 7GB for $50 prepaid offer exclusively at Walmart, was launched in November in partnership with 300 Entertainment to create a platform for emerging artists.

“Tre’ is a storyteller with something to say," said co-founder of 300 Entertainment, Kevin Liles. "He has the skills and passion to express it in a unique way and that’s what freestyling is really all about.”

In addition to being named winner of Verizon's #Freestyle50 Challenge, securing a single record contract with 300 Entertainment, Tre’ Da Kid also took home a $10,000 prize and, along with six other finalists, the opportunity to open up for Trey Songs among other artists this May during the artists' U.S. tour.

Tre’ Da Kid released his single, “Run It,” on April 14 on major hip-hop label 300 Entertainment. Produced by London on Da Track, featuring TK Kravitz and guided by 300 Co-Founder Kevin Liles, the single chronicles his journey from local Maryland rapper to one of the hottest new artists in hip-hop.

Tre' continues to write music and inspire the next generation of rappers to reach their dreams.

Read more about London on Da Track and the #Freestyle50 Challenge.

 

About the author(s): 

Jessica Thorpe is a corporate communications manager for Verizon.