Qwel & Maker
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Qwel & Maker

Chicago, Illinois, United States | INDIE

Chicago, Illinois, United States | INDIE
Band Hip Hop Soul


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



""Owl" Album Review"

"Qwel & Maker's "Owl" not only holds the crown for best album in a month loaded with quality independent hip hop releases, but also represents the best Qwel & Maker album to date. And by that, I don't only mean the best album of these two as a duo, but the best Qwel album, the best Maker album, and one of the best albums released by Galapagos4." - My Backpack is Bigger Than Yours

""Owl" Album Press Release"

"For their 3rd full-length album titled Owl (Galapagos4, 2010), Qwel & Maker’s creative partnership has gone from ‘occcasional collaboration’ to a full-fledged endeavor and the results are loud, clear, and undeniable." - Ground Lift Media

"Qwel & Maker: "Owl" Album Preview"

Make sure that you keep tabs on that upcoming "Owl" project, as it looks to be filled with the sort of classic hip hop tracks that quickly draws listeners in and leave them wanting more.” - better-blends.com

"Maker: Interview with ElevatorHipHop.com"

“Elevator catches up with producer Maker for an interview at his studio in Chicago’s west side. Maker tells us about making beats, collaborations with Qwel, Chicago hip-hop, records, new projects, Stones Throw, Now-Again, and more. Check it!” - ElevatorHipHop.com

"Qwel: Interview with The Chicago Reader"

“Local rapper Qwel has earned a reputation for his distinctive lyrics and his outspoken views on controversial topics, both as a solo artist and as a member of Typical Cats, a group that coalesced around Hyde Park’s WHPK in the late 90s and gained an underground following with the release of a self-titled debut in 2001. Since then Qwel has put out a flurry of albums, EPs, and singles (at least 17 total, all on Galapagos4), touching on subjects ranging from commercialism to creationism, and his style has been described by J. Edward Keyes for Rolling Stone as “occupying[ing] the same bleak terrain as Francis Bacon paintings or The Dark Knight . . . Old-school attitude with a manic edge.” Qwel is one of the support acts for Doom and Mos Def this Saturday at the Congress Theater, and I caught up with him for a talk in advance of the big show…” (Follow link above for full interview) - The Chicago Reader

"Qwel & Maker in Rolling Stone's "Hype Monitor""

“The Band: Qwel & Maker The Buzz: Chicago rapper turns out stark, biographical songs that occupy the same bleak terrain as Francis Bacon paintings or The Dark Knight. Listen If: You’re tired of waiting for a new El-P album, or you’re looking for an album that has old school attitude with a manic edge. Key Track: The bounding “Welcome to Chicago,” where Qwel’s desperate delivery does battle with creepy carnival organ and a hook that sounds like it was lifted from a ’70s TV show.” - Rolling Stone Magazine


2010: Qwel & Maker - "Owl" (G4CD0050) Galapagos4
2010: Qwel & Maker - "Remixes + Rarities" (Promo Only)
2009: Qwel & Maker – “So Be It” (G4CD0046) Galapagos4
2004: Qwel & Maker – “The Harvest” (G4DG0025) Galapagos4



QWEL: Recognized internationally as one of the most skilled and innovative lyricists in Hip-Hop, Qwel is not your average ambiguous applause monger. Seasoned within Chicago’s unrelenting battle circuit, the Chicago-based MC found his niche among his new found crew at University of Chicago’s WHPK Wednesday night rap show. There he met Denizen Kane and Qwazaar and soon after they formed Typical Cats. After their first album gained both national and international acclaim, Qwel embarked on his inevitable solo career which included the now classic albums "The Rubber Duckie Experiment," "If it Ain’t Been in a Pawnshop," "Then it Can’t Play the Blues," and "Dark Day."

After a barrage of successful releases on Galapagos4, Qwel would begin working on the 1st album in his Four Horsemen / Four Seasons series. Partnering with Maker on "The Harvest" marked the beginning of a collaboration, the depth of which we’re only now beginning to understand. "Freezerburner" (produced by Meaty Ogre) and "The New Wine" (produced by Kip Killagain) soon followed, with the series finale coming full circle as Qwel again called on Maker’s production talent for "So Be It." The critical success of this album led the duo to make their occasional collaboration official with their 3rd album "Owl" on Galapagos4.

But even while staying occupied with the Four Horsemen / Four Seasons projects, Qwel still managed to release at least one album per year, including the long-awaited sophomore album from Typical Cats titled "Civil Service" in 2004. But from his prolific debut to his most recent works, Qwel has proven to be groundbreaking and continues to shatter the molds and preconceived notions set for Hip-Hop.


MAKER: Hailing from a city just 40 miles outside of Chicago named Aurora –known mostly for its advances in streetlight technology– Marco Jacobo (aka Maker) has spent the past 12 years honing his production talent, releasing a barrage of albums/45s/remixes, and spending a lion’s share of his non-studio time on the road.

But despite all this, you may not have heard his name mentioned until recently. Emerging from the vital Chicago underground Hip-Hop community of the late 90s, his role as producer naturally kept him behind the scenes, tweaking levels and digging for ‘breaks,’ yet fans quickly began to associate hard, organic drums and deftly chopped/arranged dusty samples with ‘The Sound of Maker.’

After collaborating on a short series of underground releases with local artists, his beat-making prowess brought upon the attention of Chicago indie Hip-Hop record labels Birthwrite, Galapagos4, and more recently Stonesthrow’s Now Again & Innovative Leisure imprints. As a lead producer he was 1/3 of the group Glue which consisted of Adeem (two-time Scribble Jam Champion) and DJ DQ (Animal Crackers), and over the past few years has released 3 albums with Qwel ("The Harvest," "So Be It, Owl") as well as the "Graymaker" album with Grayskull (Old Dominion, Fake Four).

These projects have afforded Maker the opportunity to perform alongside such notable, internationally-known artists like Pharcyde, De La Soul, Masta Ace, Prince Paul, Little Brother, Mike Relm, Mos Def, MF Doom, Cage, Sixtoo, Pete Rock, Afrika Bambaataa, Steinski, Greyboy, D-Styles, Z-Trip, Peanut Butter Wolf, Chairman Mao, Blu, Exile, Opus, DiVinci (Solillaquists of Sound), Daedelus, Edit (Glitch Mob), Gaslamp Killer, and many others with tour routes spanning the US, Europe, and Japan. And specifically, Glue was a featured artist on MTV2 & Fuse.tv and showcased on Van’s Warped Tour.