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Kansas City, Missouri, United States

Kansas City, Missouri, United States
Band Pop Funk


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30 seconds into “Blush!,” the first track off Wonkachild’s debut album, Urkel 2.0, and it was undeniable: This kid will be famous.

He’s already well on his way. Those who have had the pleasure of seeing a live Wonkachild performance don’t soon forget the energy, passion, and tenacity the Kansas City, Missouri product brings to the stage each and every time. He dances. He writes. He sings. He rhymes. He produces. He’s created an incredibly marketable image of Elegant Funk: in a bow tie, argyle sweater, fedora, and of course Chuck Taylors, he’s equally comfortable charming the guests at a formal event as he is capable of turning said event out, having those same guests grooving on the dance floor in minutes.

Oh, and did I mention he’s ridiculously talented? Wonkachild is what I want pop music to sound like. Not that you can fit him neatly in the genre of pop; far from it. His vocals are decidedly hip-hop with elements of soul and funk. He is equally at home flowing over an electric guitar riff as he is an old-school drumbeat or a jazzy walking bass. He’s been called genre-bending, and truly is. He’s Andre 3000 meets James Brown. Michael Jackson meets Lil Wayne. Prince meets Kanye…and I could go on. Listening to his album, I was struck by his well-executed versatility. Wonkachild frolics all over the musical landscape with style and ease. He is a mix-master of intimidating proportions to the likes of Kanye West, who seems increasingly out of touch with his audience. By contrast, Wonkachild seems eager to engage listeners in his playful banter of jazz, rock, funk, soul, and electronica.

Perhaps even more impressive is what backs up the funky dance and hip-hop rhythms: “a refreshing lyrical wordplay infused with the subliminal message of ‘confident cool.’” On the title track “Urkel,” he separates himself from the mass produced style that typifies pop “artists” today:

The world is a mirror just reflecting how we treat it

we harvest ignorance and expect the kids to eat it

you talk about NOTHING on a track and try to feed it

then tell them it’s delicious cause you know that they’ll believe it

His art is poised, deliberate and mindful, as it methodically exposes the emptiness in “profit-pop” by offering a counterexample based on sophistication and depth. It only seems natural to attribute this to the sense of freedom he finds in himself and his artistry, a security that some pop musicians seem to lack. He is confident in himself, and he wants you to be too. Make no mistake: he doesn’t need you in order to maintain his confident cool. But how could you resist?

Originality and relevance coexist harmoniously on this album, creating a phenomenon rarely seen in hip-hop since OutKast hit the scene. His name is difficult enough to forget as it is, but I have a feeling Wonkachild won’t relinquish the attention of music fans everywhere for quite some time. Urkel 2.0 is now available at all digital retailers - TheHipHopDemocrat.com

When I told a colleague here at The Pitch that I was excited about an artist named Wonkachild, he said, "What, is he a candy raver or something?"

Yeah, 23-year-old Jaqwan Sirls picked a stupid-ass name on which to hang a music career. But even if he went by Fetusmuncher, I'd be encouraging attendance at his show tonight at the Record Bar. Why? Because I listened to his whole album online and didn't skip a single song. It is, as they say, all good.

I can clown on Sirls' moniker all I want, he says, because, "If you really think about it, Willy Wonka didn't care what people thought of him."

Sirls imagines himself as the son of the candymaker from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory because as a kid, he could relate more to characters in books than to people, he says.

He considered going by "Wonka," but says, "That sounds like I could be some rapper from the 'hood, so if I add 'child' to it, it separates me from them."

The distinction is necessary because Wonkachild's music is far from thuggy. The soon-to-be Rockhurst grad raps about Argyle sweaters, and the title track from his debut album, Urkel, features the chorus, "I dress like Urkel but I look like Carlton/ and I'm cooler than you."

Hear a couple for yourself after the jump.

MP3: Wonkachild, "Argyle Sweater"
MP3: Wonkachild, "Blush"

The album is entirely self-produced, Sirls says. He uses a Mac program called Logic, a keyboard and "third-party sounds" (samples and the sounds of him banging on things that sound cool, he explains) to create his music.

"I'm inspired big time by Michael Jackson, but a lot of people didn't really understand him and it pisses me off," he says. "What he was trying to tell people was, don't stop creating new stuff. I'm focused on what can be, not what has been."

Tonight, he performs with two of his cousins who are artists in their own right: Dutch and Atilla the Beatsmith. Daniel Ordonez, aka Nez, will also take the stage, as well as Dae Ahzae, who runs an all-ages, open-mic night on Tuesdays at 1809 Troost (the building with the Michael Jackson tribute mural by Alexander Austin).

It might be wise to catch Wonkachild now. On the 6th of November, he's off to Remix the Runway in Chicago -- other performers at the event include Amerie and Omarion. The following week, Wonkachild will rub elbows with Jay-Z and N.E.R.D. at the University of Illinois. He's got an agent looking to get him a record deal.

How about that? He says, "I'm nervous. Happy. Scared."

See how the hype stacks up to the real at the "Return of Fresh" show tonight at the Record Bar, 10p.m., 21+, $7 at the door. - The Pitch

We are in a time where as the years progress our music continues to go in a down-ward direction. In a generation where music is constantly sending out negative messages to its listeners, you cant help but wonder who is going to be the one individual to take a stand and change the definition of "cool" to a more positive image.That person has finally arrived and he is unlike any other artist you have seen to date. Kansas City,MO. native, Jaqwan Sirls, goes by the name of "WonkaChild". He is what some would call a modern-day rennaisance, man of many artistic talents. He does not just limit himself to the astounding and inspiring music he creates; In addition to being a musical artist, he also writes children books, teaches hip hop dance classes, acts, and writes playwrights. Many call him a "creative genius".

Another great aspect Wonka brings to music is extraordinary, memorable performances. You will most likely never witness another artist that comes close to having the amount of energy that he has on stage during his performances. Wonka began interest in a musical career at the age of 10 after winning his local district talent show. He had never performed on stage previous to this event which led to a surprise to his viewers when leaped off-stage into a dance move during the performance."People thought I was professionally trained for stage... at TEN years old!" says Sirls. "I Studied every move that James Brown, Fred Astaire, Michael Jackson, and local street breakdancers did and trained myself dancing and singing with a mic in hand". "WonkaChild" is now managed by FamCreations and Mainstream Managment Group. He has worked with artists such as Chief Wakil (Brian Kennedy's Protege), Mr. Robotic; and also has a remix with Janelle Monae "Violet Stars Happy Hunting OZ remix." Wonka's unique dance styles never fails to "Wow" his crowd and sustain their attention.Words cannot accurately describe his performances. His music and stage presence is unique and beyond entertaining, He is truly unlike any other artist you have ever encountered.

"WonkaChild" is the introduction to a possible New Era in music, An era that is much needed. However, "WonkaChild" is a new type of artist that sets a more positive example to his listeners. His style of music encourages people and let them know that its acceptable to dress presentable, speak properly, and seek an education to further exert talents. Wonka brings back wat has been missing from "good music", positivity and originality. Through his music he hopes to create the "Rebirth of Cool". This rebirth will change the mindsets of our youth and in turn, hopefully, create a brighter future.

To find out more about WonkaChild visit:



Wonkachild.bandcamp.com - MJ French

Dans la lignée des artistes au répertoire hybride que l'on apprécie particulièrement sur mysoul (ceux qui n'ont pas franchement envie de choisir leur camp entre Hip Hop, Soul, ou Rock), voici venu Wonkachild, un drôle de personnage qui s'est autoproclamé "Rebellious Gentleman", le gentleman rebelle. Entendez par là une certaine ambivalence entre son look preppy savamment étudié (nœud pap, Converse Chuck Taylor aux pieds et lunettes style Wayfarer obligatoires) et son Hip Hop Soul à l'esprit oldschool, qu'il mâtine de Funk débridé et d'un soupçon de Rock attitude.

La posture est loin d'être innovante, reconnaissons le, mais si vous aimez le rap Golden Age, dans son versant le plus cool (façon Fresh Prince), que vous appréciez le funk/soul borderline et sexy d'un Van Hunt, et qu'il y a quelque chose en vous de Steve Urkel (icône nerd popularisée par la série "La Vie De Famille", qui donne son titre à l'album), alors vous trouverez forcément votre bonheur parmi les 12 titres qui composent l'album de Wonkachild :

<a href="http://wonkachild.bandcamp.com/album/urkel-20">BLUSh! by Wonkachild</a>

Ci-dessous, Wonkachild pose sur un remix du titre "Violet Stars Happy Hunting!" de Janelle Monae, dont la version originale apparaissait sur le premier EP de la chanteuse, "Metropolis: Suite I (The Chase)" (2007). Les deux artistes sont tous les deux originaires de la ville de Kansas City, dans le Missouri.

En bonus, un live du titre "URkEL" : - MySoul.fr


Urkel 2.0 (June 10, 2010)



WONKACHiLD is a multifaceted artist, music producer, & dancer whose poised sense of style and charisma contrasts his electrifying performances and genre-bending sound. Often reminisced to James Brown in the late 1950's, Wonkachild's ambiguous approach to entertainment refreshingly stands out in the sea of alternative Pop and New-Soul music.