Your Stories: LiL iFFy

The 'Greatest Wizard Rapper Alive' (according to mtvU) lives right here in East Tennessee. He raps about all things Harry Potter and he's serious about his craft.

The man, the myth, the legend. LiL iFFy is hardcore about Wandcore.

LiL iFFy is really Wil Wright, a really creative, really nice guy who grew up in Oak Ridge.

"My mom, my grandmother and my aunt all were always really good at making sure I got to do cool things," said Wil.

A vacation in the summer of 1984 stands out.

"They asked the band if I could sing with the band and they let me so that was the first time I ever performed music and I sang Rocky Top," said Wil.

But it wasn't until Wil saw Michael Jackson perform live at Neyland Stadium that he was hooked and started asking questions.

"Where do songs come from? How do you get to be the person who writes the songs and puts on the shows?" asked Wil.

He tried out various genres of music.

"I actually performed rap music for the first time in the fifth grade when I won the talent show with Do the Bartman," said Wil.

At age 13, he started writing music.

"My dad got me this great guitar, way better than I probably needed at the moment," said Wil. "He would get a group of musicians together when I would go visit him. He changed his whole attic into a rehearsal space in his house just for me to come and learn to play."

And this passion for music kept growing all the way to college when he auditioned for the Pride of the Southland Band.

"It was one of the most nerve-racking experiences of my life, but my ultimate talent is fake it 'til you make it because I made the band," recalled Wil.

Around the same time, he started Senryu, a local rock band and that was his focus for a long time until he got a bad case of writer's block.

"I tried a bunch of different things, I tried to force myself to write, which is not a good idea because you'll really make some garbage."

And that's when Harry Potter rap came into the picture. He turned his love of the magical children's books into raps of wizardry.

"The books are so rich with language and mythology," he said. "Now it's three years later and the one song Ha Ha Ha has taken us everywhere."

They've toured the country, played Bonnaroo, even Hollywood stars have taken notice. The funny thing about Wil is he's versatile. He's still in rock band Senryu and has another project too.

"There's another one called Weird Miracle that plays on one of my other musical obsessions, maybe my greatest music obsession, old slow sad country music," he explained.

And if that wasn't enough, he also writes about football in the Metro Pulse.

"A long time I thought I was completely alone as a member of the arts community who was secretly obsessed with football and the longer you hang around, you meet this sort of a secret society of closeted Tennessee football fans," said Wil.

Wil Wright: writer, rapper, wizard, casting spells on adoring muggles across the country.

"They always want to know where it's from and it always makes me feel great to tell people it's from here," he said.

One of Your Stories. There's no place like this one.

LiL iFFy is opening for Layzie Bone and Mo Thugs Thursday night at Club NV.


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