TUNDE OLANIRAN is set to release his second album STRANGER on October
5 via his Magic Wheel imprint. The Flint, MI multi-hyphenate (singer, songwriter, producer, rapper, choreographer, author, activist & more) is a beloved fixture in the Detroit-area music scene and his recordings, live performances and activism have led to wide critical praise. In 2017 alone, he was a breakout performer at SXSW and toured with Sleigh Bells, his single “Namesake” was used last fall by Apple for their iPhone 8 ads and more.Stranger is the follow up to Tunde’s 2015 debut full-length album Transgressor.Written while on tour with Sleigh Bells, Stranger has the same fun and unexpected production as its predecessor but with songs that he could also sing with just a piano or guitar. He adds:
‘Stranger’ is, in some ways, about anonymity. Being from Flint, you’re often anonymous; a curiosity at best and a ghost at worst.
The experience of becoming an artist in Flint was very disjointed and piecemeal. Few people understood what it meant to be an artist and
nobody was there to give any real world advice. And this water crisis has engulfed everything in its wake, and it’s a challenge to exist as worthy of attention apart from the narrative of your tragedy. I want to stand on my art and performance, not rely on a backstory (“queer artist from Flint”).
I’m not sure if I’ll ever shake the feeling of being a stranger, being stranger. Even in the burst of queer talent that floods Instagram feeds and streaming services, everyone is thin or slim or muscular and white or lighter or more impossibly beautiful.
I made ‘Stranger’ to write and sing my way out of tragedy and also about being a stranger to everyone, including the people that love you. I’m not sure where I fit, but I know I do deserve to be here.
In addition to his own work, Olaniran has collaborated with fellow Michigan artists including Flint Eastwood on her track “Push” and Mona Haydar, whose widely written-about track and viral video “Hijabi” was co-written, produced and directed by him. Tunde also worked with indie folk singer-songwriter and musician Chris Bathgate, co-writing and performing on Bathgate’s single “Low Hey.”For tour dates and more visit: tundeolaniran.com/