Eli Fola's story is deeply rooted in a rich tapestry of sounds that bridge the traditional with the modern. A Nigerian-American powerhouse in the house music scene, Eli's journey has been marked by relentless innovation and an unwavering commitment to his craft. As a DJ, producer, and a notably talented saxophonist, his influence has been resonant, breathing new life into the world of music through his distinct "Yoruba Tech Soul."
This signature sound didn't emerge in isolation. Growing up, Eli's ears were tuned to the rhythms of musical titans such as Osunlade, Jeff Mills, and the legendary Fela Kuti. These early influences imbued him with a sense of musical exploration, pushing him to mix the vibrant sounds of traditional Nigerian music with the pulsating beats of Afrobeats and highlife. The result? A sonic identity that’s both fresh and deeply evocative of his roots.
The music industry's giants were quick to recognize Eli’s unique flair. The likes of Grammy award-winning artists Swizz Beatz and Alicia Keys didn’t just appreciate his music – they wanted it in their personal spaces, leading to Eli being invited to perform at their private events. Beyond this, Eli's talent has seen him share the limelight with icons such as ASAP Rocky, Lil Wayne, and 2 Chainz. Music festivals and major events have also featured him alongside renowned artists, including the likes of Black Coffee, Pablo Fierro, and many others.
Eli’s musical reach isn’t just limited to the stage or studio. His expertise has been sought after in the world of film, where he's composed scores for high-profile brands and platforms, notably Vogue Italia and the trendy Soho House. His presence at elite gatherings like ArtBasel is further testament to his multifaceted artistry.
But Eli's vision extends beyond personal accolades. In 2016, he birthed Tech Afrique, an independent label that doubles as a vibrant platform for promoting Afrofuturist ideas. More than just a label, Tech Afrique serves as a beacon for emerging talents, especially those from the often underrepresented BIPOC community. To date, it has been a launchpad for three EPs and has been the force behind pulsating events from the heart of New York City to the scenic landscapes of Tulum, Mexico.