TEKNIQUE The Kingpin was born to entertain! Born into the vibrant streets of Toronto, Canada in the late 70’s, Teknique became engulfed into the hip-hop culture. Raised in a Caribbean household, he was exposed all types of urban music from gospel to reggae. His family was heavily involved in entertainment. His mother was an established well-known gospel singer in the Caribbean and his brother was a local MC and aspiring DJ that surrounded him with the hip-hop culture on a daily basis. But it was the day that he heard “The Show” by Doug E. Fresh and Slick Rick that change his life and love for the culture forever. By the age of 8, Teknique was performing at various showcases from malls to concert halls showing off his new rapping skills. He was even, earlier in his teens, a founding member and singer in his church choir. While taking an introductory course in radio broadcasting at a summer camp, Teknique’s instructor heard his talent for rapping and told him he had an idea. After some coaxing by his instructor, Teknique recorded his first demo at the tender age of 12, which was composed by tracks produce by his partner as well as with the famous art of beatboxing. As his skills were honed on the block, to the high school cafeteria lunch table, to the studio, Teknique began to be known to his friends as the cat to step up and battle every time there was a cipher. This skill brought him to the attention of an A&R Rep. at Tommy Boy Records (Naughty By Nature, Queen Latifah, House of Pain, De La Soul etc.) which came from New York City to his high school to check him out first hand. Teknique was only 14 years old and in grade 9, so the negotiations soured after parental guidance or interference, however you want to call it.
After getting critical acclaim as a rapper/MC and studying the game and business, Teknique decided to switch his focus to entering the diverse world of radio. The year was ’94 and Teknique was invited to check out one of his friends’ hip-hop radio shows at a local radio station, first hand. After feeling the vibe that radio brought him, Teknique went back again, then again, then again. After realizing the passion and vocal skills Teknique had, his friend told him to try his hand at hosting the show. From that time on it was over! That day became the birth of Teknique the “radio phenomenon”. Teknique went on to hold down the hip-hop show for 2 years, becoming a staple in community urban radio in Toronto. Hosting innovative show segments, roll calls, on-air battles and even battling himself. At the end of it all Teknique had found his first love in entertainment, radio. This love took him to hosting various formats of radio, throughout his young life, from commercial to internet. It developed his vocal conducting abilities to shine at hosting everything from urban talent showcases to TV. From this one experience, Teknique became an artist, an entertainer, and a risk-taker of his talents. He later took a step into acting, performing in stage theatre, on local TV shows and pilots, also feature films.
Teknique was also a young entrepreneur. He created an energetic savvy for business. At a young age he decide to use what he knew from hip-hop culture and entertainment to make more money for himself. He always wanted to be his own boss. His first venture was a traveling barber service that he started once he learned to cut his own hair, which he still cuts today. He organized himself and other barbers to cater to wherever a client wanted his hair cut whether it was their house or business. Doing something innovative with his spare time and making money doing it, motivated Teknique to seriously pursue entrepreneurship. At age 17, Teknique along with one of his friends started a small clothing line. He made everything from hats to rugby shirts, complete with his company logo Elevation Gear. The line sold out quickly and became to demanding for a high-schooler to handle, which forced Teknique to put education ahead and the clothing line on the back burner. In ’96, Teknique decided to incorporate his talent, observation of urban entertainment and business savvy into becoming a club promoter. He produced his first urban club event in June of that year with much success and never looked back. This was the move he knew he wanted to make. It had money, it had fame and most of all unlimited potential. Enter Elevation Enterprises Inc., a company Teknique founded in 2001 with a group of friends. With Teknique as the C.E.O., Elevation Enterprises went on to promote big things from clubs to huge urban concerts like the Snoop Dogg “Puff-Puff-Pass” Tour. A year later, as C.E.O. of Elevation Enterprises Inc., he was awarded the coveted “Best Promoter of the Year” award at the 2002 Urban X-Posure Awards presented by U.M.A.C. (Urban Music Association of Canada). Feeling a sense of accomplishment and one for change, Teknique left Elevation and started URBAN LIFE MEDIA Inc. which accompanied what Elevation did but with more of a focus on corporate marketing, internet publishing and talent management/bookings for the urban entertainment industry. URBAN LIFE MEDIA Inc. grew to have several successful divisions; ULM Artist Management formerly UrbanFactory.com, Teknique Clothing Co., ULM Talent Bookings and ULM Music Publishing. The client list is outstanding: BET (Black Entertainment Television), FLOW 93.5fm, Boulevard Media Inc., XXL Magazine, Universal Music Canada, BMG Music Canada, Iceberg Media, National College Radio Association, HOB (House Of Blues) Concerts and many more, until the company was bought and renamed BLOW Communications Inc.. BLOW is now a worldwide niche marketing/communications company with a unique approach to business, since it’s sale Teknique no longer has ties with the company.
In a short time Teknique has ventured into numerous fields of entertainment, yet he believes he’s only begun. A man with such talent can only get better and better, which is his absolute intention. At this time, Teknique still balances all of his talents and companies with accuracy. You can now catch him, oncreen appearing in film & television, hypin’ up a club as a club MC, grooving a crowd as a DJ, or throwing down the “hottest” tunes on his series of mixtape-style CD’s. Knowing all aspects of urban entertainment, Teknique is poised to continue his reign as THE KINGPIN.
“I am entertainment!!!” TEKNIQUE The Kingpin – May 16, 2003; Urbanfactory.com