Ebony Oshunrinde, a 16-year-old Canadian-Nigerian girl, has been listed in the credits for Jay-Z's new album, "Magna Carta... Holy Grail". Oshunrinde, who has just finished grade 11 in Brampton, southern Ontario, was credited for a track called "Crown".
Oshunrinde a.k.a WondaGurl began learning how to produce music when she was 9. After watching a video of Jay-Z and Timbaland working in a studio, she downloaded music software and taught herself how to use it from watching YouTube videos. "I wanted to do the exact same thing that [Jay-Z] did," Oshunrinde said in a recent interview.
When she was 15, she won Toronto's Battle of the Beatmakers and signed an exclusive management deal with Black Box. After that, she began working with local and U.S. producers including Travis Scott, one of Jay-Z's collaborators.
Scott was in a studio with Jay-Z when Oshunrinde sent him her beat, which she said "has a lot of bass and a lot of bounce." A few days later, Scott texted Oshunrinde, saying, "I'm gonna change your life." When Scott told her that her beat would be used in Jay-Z's album, she thought he was joking.
"Usually that doesn't really happen to 16-year-olds," Oshunrinde said. "I didn't believe it at all, because it's pretty crazy news."
Oshunrinde has yet to meet Jay-Z, but she's heard that the rapper is interested in meeting her soon.
Jay-Z's "Magna Carta... Holy Grail" was released on Thursday, July 4, for 1 million Samsung Galaxy users. The album will be available for the rest of the world on Tuesday, July 9.