Sean Jordan Volpe, better known by his stage name Wordburglar, is a Canadian alternative hip hop artist from Halifax, Nova Scotia, now based in Toronto. His style is best described as energetic and zany with an emphasis on wordplay and humour. He primarily works with his crews Backburner and Props Dept for all aspects of his music creation, including production, cuts, mixing, mastering and guest vocals.
Born as Sean Jordan Volpe, SJ the Wordburglar began his rap career as a member of The Dregs of Society using the name SJ or "Essjae". Their biggest hit was a song called "Stuart" about one of their friends. It appears as a bonus cut on Wordburglar's self-titled debut. After the Dregs broke up, Wordburglar started a solo career as SJ, adopting the additional "the Wordburglar" upon teaming up with Beatmason for his first major single, "Wordburglar." The song was central to his self-released debut (Backburner) and was also included on the compilation Bassments of Badmen: Volume 2 (Hand'Solo Records) later that year. The song was also made into an animated video, which is featured on Jasmatuph's Preserving Efforts DVD video collection, and has been remixed by a number of different producers. Signing to Hand'Solo Records, Wordburglar followed his debut CD with a vinyl EP that collected songs from that album and his at-that-time upcoming Burglaritis with a few exclusives in 2005 and Burglaritis in 2006. Both the vinyl EP and Burglaritis feature the song "Breeze," a duet with Quannum Projects member Pigeon John.
In 2009 Wordburglar released "Burgie's Basement: B-Sides, Remixes & Rarities" as an exclusive CD available at live shows and through his website. "Burgie's Basement" contained mostly unreleased material and included a few tracks that were rumoured to be from the "3rdburglar" album ("S'up Burg" being one them) which had been originally announced with a 2009 release date. "Burgie's Basement" went on to be released digitally through Toronto Hip-Hop label (URBNET).
In 2011 according to Wordburglar his album 3rdburglar had been put on hold until Backburner had completed their album Heatwave. Wordburglar was heavily involved with the Backburner album and is featured on 10 of the album's 14 songs. Heatwave was released on Hand'Solo Records in September 2011. Wordburglar's third studio album, 3rdburglar, was finally released in May 2012. The lead single "Rhyme O'Clock" was released in March 2012 and features Toronto rapper More or Les. In August 2013, Wordburglar released his fourth studio album, Welcome to Cobra Island, a concept album based on the G.I. Joe media franchise.
With Burglaritis, Wordburglar was nominated for Canadian Music Week's Indie Awards in the category of "Favourite Urban Artist/Group or Duo", as well as winning the fan-voted award for Best Lyrics from CBC Radio 3 for his song "Word Owner." Burglaritis was also the third most played hip hop album on Canadian college radio in 2006 according to Earshot's year end chart summary. In 2007 he was selected as one of Urb Magazine's Next 1000 for their online content, and in 2008 he has been selected by them once again for their Next 100 in the print edition of the magazine.
Wordburglar is a member of the Canadian crew Backburner, whose nationwide membership also includes producers Beatmason (Wordburglar's primary producer), Dexter Doolittle, Fresh Kils and Uncle Fester, and rappers Ghettosocks, Ginzu 333, Jay Bizzy, Jesse Dangerously, Johnny Hardcore, More or Les, Rez Villain, Selfhelp, Thesis, Timbuktu and Toolshed.
He is also the founding member of The Props Dept and The Flavour Stable.
Work outside of hip hop:
Wordburglar is the writer of the action-comedy comic book series Snakor's Pizza under his given name Sean Jordan. Wordburglar also performs original comedy material as a sketch and stand-up comedian under his real name. He is one half of sketch comedy duo The Friend & The Jerk, and a member of the sketch troupes Smells Like the 80s and I Hope It's Potatoes. As an actor, he has appeared on stage as Pumpkin in the Toronto run of Purple Octogon Theatre's Pulp Fiction - Live!! and has appeared in a number of films and commercials. He is also behind YouTube character Grandpa Funnybook, a spoof of Marvel Comics former president Stan Lee.