The Buzz On... Wale

(Credit: Mel D. Cole/

MTV staff writer/ resident hip-hop historian/soothsayer timmhotep aku sees the future of hip-hop in Wale. Knowledge is dropped accordingly:

This is Wale. His name is pronounced "Wah-Lay." Familiarize yourself with his face, learn his songs, be an early adopter, because in the coming months you’ll be seeing a lot of him. And when you do see him, you'll be able to brag that you were up on him before anyone else was.

Hailing from Washington, D.C. and reppin' the whole DMV (D.C., Maryland, Virginia), Wale is basically where hip-hop is going. While've all been worrying about stuff like gas prices, the recession, and a presidential election, rap has been in the midst of a renaissance. Tough-guy posturing and stereotypes are being supplanted by a new breed emcees of who pride themselves on eclecticism and lyricism.

Wale loves Seinfeld, rhymes over go-go music and has a jones for streetwear and sneaks. He's got the co-sign of folks like Jay-Z, Lindsay Lohan, the Roots, and Mark Ronson, who signed him to his Allido Records label. And best of all, the dude can rap. Watch when he blows up -- we'll be standing here arms folded like "toldya so."

+ Watch Wale below in the Roots' new "Rising Up" video with Chrisette Michele and in Amy Winehouse's "Valerie" video (minus Amy), check out Wale's MySpace page and The Mixtape About Nothing and catch him on the Rock the Bells tour this summer.