Pride Month Artist Spotlight: Tyler, The Creator

Lisa Marino, Radio General Manager

[Eds Note: This article has been published in partnership with Spinnaker Radio to feature LGBTQ+ music artists and celebrate Pride Month.]

Founder of his own record label, Odd Future, Tyler, the Creator is a multifaceted, Grammy award-winning artist.

In Ladera Heights, California, Tyler was born as Tyler Gregory Okonma in 1991. His fascination for music ignited when he was young. Tyler decided to learn piano on his own and quickly became a proficient musician at 14 years old.

Tyler, The Creator.
Tyler, The Creator. Courtesy of the Associated Press.\

In 2007, Tyler assembled the hip-hop/rap group, Odd Future, with Hodgy Beats, Jasper Dolphin, and Left Brain. In November 2008, the group released their debut album The Odd Future Tape. In 2009 and 2010, the rap collective welcomed new artists including Frank Ocean and Earl Sweatshirt.

While performing and touring with Odd Future, Tyler began his solo career and released his debut album Bastard in 2009. XL Recordings then gave him a one-album deal. Tyler recorded and released his second album Goblin, leading him to win “Best New Artist” at the MTV Video Music Awards.

After signing a deal with Sony Entertainment and RED Distribution, Odd Future became Odd Future Records, a recording label, in April 2011. Tyler also released his clothing line Golf Wang the same year. Since creating the record label, Tyler has produced hits for artists including The Weeknd, Mac Miller and Lil Yachty.

At the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards, Tyler won “Best Rap Album” for Igor, his fifth studio album, released in May 2019. The album gave Tyler his first number one hit on the Billboard Artist 100 chart. The next year, Tyler won another Grammy for “Best Rap Album” for Call Me if You Get Lost. Earning Tyler another Billboard hit, Call Me if You Get Lost ranked number one on the Billboard 200 Albums chart in 2021.

On Twitter, Tyler joked about his fans being indifferent when he previously opened up about his sexuality.


Tyler alluded to his sexuality in the song I Ain’t Got Time, released in 2017.

“I’ve been kissing white boys since 2004,” Tyler said in the song.

Tyler, The Creator
Tyler, The Creator. Courtesy of the Associated Press.

From Call Me if You Get Lost, the track WUSYANAME is a hip-hop/rap collaboration between Tyler, YoungBoy, and Ty Dolla $ign.

Bright synth, bass guitar, and a mellow drumbeat assemble, creating a hip-hop groove under the three rappers as they contribute various vocal riffs.

Less than a bar of instrumental cessation allows Tyler to introduce the first verse. His rap is doubled with another vocal track. Ty provides warm, contrasting vocal embellishments between Tyler’s phrases.

Melodic vocals are at their highest prominence, ascending in the chorus. Ty and Tyler sing in unison, yet one voice is panned to the left while the other is panned to the right.

YoungBoy bears the second verse in a rap while melodic vocals continue behind him.

When the chorus emerges for the last time, Ty emits an abundance of vocal riffs. The mixture of the artists’ timbres gives texture to the repeated melody, bringing the song to its closure.

Tyler, the Creator’s music can be found on Spotify, YouTube, and Apple Music.


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