TDE may have revealed Lance Skiiiwalker as one of their “John Doe” artists.
On May 11, nearly every member of the Top Dawg Entertainment (TDE) camp took the time to send a tweet to a mystery person profile on Twitter.
At 4:20 p.m., TDE members Ab-Soul, Isaiah Rashad, Jay Rock, Kendrick Lamar, ScHoolboy Q and SZA all tweeted “?” to the profile of one Lance Skiiiwalker.
While updating fans on the progress for projects out of the TDE camp, Anthony “Top Dawg” Tiffith posted an image of a whiteboard with all of the current progress. On that whiteboard it included two artists listed solely as “John Doe 1” and “John Doe 2.” It’s rumored that Skiiiwalker could very well be one of the listed John Doe artists.
TDE President Dave Free posted a gif of Michael Jordan with a tweet “John Doe” a couple of minutes after tweeting at Skiiiwalker.
The tweets weren’t the first time Skiiiwalker has had ties to TDE. Back in September, he was listed on Jay Rock’s album 90059–credited with features on the title track “90059,” “Telegram (Going Krazy)” and “Money Trees Deuce.” Skiiiwalker also appears in the video for “90059.” Many thought the chorus to have been Jay Rock distorting his voice, but it turns out that it is, in fact, Skiiiwalker using an Ol’ Dirty Bastard style of delivery.
“I know this face, do you?
As you know, FSD has been around for close to nine years now. Almost a decade at this point. And throughout the years we’ve meet hundreds of artists — many who’ve come and gone. Some have gone to the moon, while others are still clawing away in the underground. One thing I’m good at, is remembering faces. Maybe not always names, but always faces.
So when Kendrick (and the rest of TDE) mysteriously tweeted “?” at Twitter account
@skiiiwalker, I was curious. Once on the page, I noticed the artist was from Chicago, IL — the bio says nothing more other than artist/producer. My phone and DMs began blowing up with questions on if I knew who this phantom artist was, so after studying the pic, I put it all together.
Skiiwalker is Johnny Rocket. From Chicago group The Rocketeers. Yes, this was a Chicago group from the early days of FSD — around 2008 or 2009. It was a duo consisting of D-Win and Johnny Rocket — both talented artists rising in the Chi’s crowded scene. D-Win was the rapper, while many of the beats and vocals were handled by Rocket. They were dope. They even participated in our citywide cypher with Leaders and Enstrumental back in 2009. It was called The GO! Experiment.
The group would eventually break up, but not before Johnny Rocket made his way to LA to link with Kendrick and TDE. Obviously there’s a bigger story here — how the hooked up, what his plans are, is he dropping an album, etc. But one thing’s for sure…he’s definitely rolling with Top Dawg Entertainment.
Much of Skiiwalker’s early material has been scrubbed for the internet, so we’ll share more details as they come available to us.”
Before all of the buzz surrounding the recent tweets, user @sjohnson120625 tweeted at Top Dawg revealing the information given by Barber, but a month prior to the conversations taking place now.
@dangerookipawaa damn i thought for sure Lance Skiiiwalker was rock's alter ego, but it's actually johnny rocket from the rocketeers
— Spencer Johnson (@SpencerAJohnson) April 14, 2016
Though a lot of what Lance Howard, formerly known as Johnny Rocket and currently known as Lance Skiiiwalker, has been removed from the internet, it’s tough to get an idea of what his sound is. After a couple of searches, some of what is left of The Rocketeers still remains. The Rocketeers’ Myspace account still remains and the Skiiiwalker on those tracks don’t have the same gritty sound the one on Jay Rock’s songs have–granted artists are able to change their sound so it could be one of his many facets.
On their Myspace account, they also have some songs from their time together. Other than hailing from Chicago and their last posting coming in 2014, according to their Myspace page, is all we have on Skiiiwalker for now. That and a sole tweet–the name of ScHoolboy Q’s newest song:
It’ll be interesting to see where this all goes as the lack of informations and the recent inclusion only points toward an imminent release.