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Local Hip-Hop artist Mke’s following grows after viral Tik Tok with comedian Michael Blackson

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For 17-year-old rapper and recording artist Michael Johnson – a.k.a. Mke – a recent chance to produce a Tik-Tok music video with comedian Michael Blackson, who has over 7 million followers on Tik-Tok and Instagram, was an opportunity to good to pass up. 

Blackson, known as “The African King of Comedy,” is a renowned actor and comedian who has starred in movies like “Next Friday,” “Coming to America 2,” and “Meet The Blacks,” and on P Diddy’s ‘Bad Boys of Comedy,” “The Chappelle Show,” and “30 Rock.” Johnson was hanging with the comedian backstage after a show when the idea popped up to do the Tik Tok.

Was Johnson nervous to perform with Blackson, who has been doing stand-up comedy, film, and television shows for more than two decades?

“Not really. He’s just a regular person, for real. I thought it was a really cool experience,” Johnson tells Madison365. “Before that, I asked if he could listen to my music to see what he thought about it and he said that he liked it. So I asked him if we could do a video and he said, ‘Yeah.’”

It didn’t take long for the duo to shoot a quick video (below) that was soon seen by more than 12,000 people. (Warning: some explicit lyrics)

@michaelblacksonofficial

This lil Modasucka New song is fire! @mke3x_ #fyp #foryoupage #fy #michaelblackson

♬ original sound – Michael Blackson

“He said, ‘I’m going to post this to my Tik-Tok, as well as yours, and I’ll give you a follow,’ and I told him that I really appreciate that,” Johnson says. “When he first posted it, it boosted my following by about 50 and it got me a couple of hundred likes.”

The musician/rapper, who goes by Mke, spent his early childhood education years in West and South Philadelphia but grew up in both Wisconsin and Ohio.

“I rap about my everyday life and people who inspire me to make music,” he says.

Mke is currently streaming on all social media platforms with four singles released and two music videos. His latest song “Thoughts to Myself” (video above) was released on Oct. 29 in honor of his uncle George “Mozack” Milton who passed away recently. The video was filmed in Madison and on the south side of Chicago.

Mke says some of the inspirations for his rapping style come from Polo G, SSGKobe, Rod Wave. He started writing music in the summer of 2020, during the height of the pandemic, and his songs are produced by his best friend Daniel Goldstein who encouraged him to pursue his musical passion.

“What I love about Hip-Hop are the flows and different beats. There are some beats that I can hop right on and make a flow. I like to ab-lib,” he says. “I talk about things that I experience or things that I see people go through.”

MKE with best friend Daniel Goldstein who produces his music

Johnson’s dad is well-known Boys and Girls Club of Dane County CEO Michael Johnson who is pretty happy about the new viral Tik-Tok video and his son’s rising music career.

“When my son posted the Tik Tok, it had about 12,000 views in less than two days. But we looked at Michael Blackson’s average views on videos and we think in a month about 100,000 people will have viewed that video,” Johnson, the senior, tells Madison365.

Michael Johnson formed a rap group on the west side of Chicago in the early ’90s and released this album in 1994.

“We just found out this summer how good he was,” Johnson adds. “He told me and my wife that he has been doing music and rapping and I was like, “OK.’ I used to rap back in the day. He was like, ‘I’m following in your footsteps, but I’m a much better rapper than you!’ I laughed, but then I listened to his stuff and it was really good. He had about 12 songs and I’m like, ‘that’s a whole album!’ My wife and I were blown away.”

Rafael Ragland, founder of Madison-based production company, 608 TV, has done two music videos for Mke. He has also recently been interviewed by 93.1 JAMZ here in Madison and Power 99, a hip-hop station in Philadelphia. He also has interviews scheduled on WDAS Radio and WGCI Chicago.

“We have a few more interviews planned and a will be talking about a performance with the Milwaukee Bucks,” Michael Johnson, the senior, says. “It’s pretty cool stuff. I’m a pretty proud dad. He’s an honor roll student and a football player. Just an overall great kid.” 

Mke’s s first album that’s coming out titled “Rising”

Mke says that he will continue to make music about his life experiences and the challenges and opportunities he sees in the world. His goal is to have his music being played all over the world. If a big break happens, he says, he is ready for it.

“But as of right now, rapping is just an aside. I do it for fun. I plan on going to college for football. But if that doesn’t work out, I plan on going into sports medicine,” he says. “I feel like I could be a rapper, but I always have a backup plan just in case.

“Seeing all of the numbers from that last Tik-Tok video, it makes me want to keep pursuing music. But, as I said, I’ll always have a backup plan in case music doesn’t work out. If my music was to ever take off, I would still go to college. I’d probably do it online. Making music, however, is something that I really love.”

 

 

Mke’s music can be listened to and downloaded by visiting the music tree, connected to all his social media platforms.