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Eschewing the gangster rap that defined the Gallic hip-hop scene of the '90s in favor of an old-school jazz-funk vibe, MC Zoxea is renowned as one of France's most intriguing urban talents. Born Jean-Jacques Kodjo in Sevres in 1974, he first teamed up with Melopheelo and Dany Dan to form Les Sages Poètes de la Rue, who found fame after appearing on the soundtrack to cult classic La Haine. Zoxea remained an integral part of the trio while also exploring his creative streak elsewhere, founding the Beat de Boul collective and the IV My People crew, as well as appearing on records by Suprême NTM and Busta Flex. In 1999, he launched his solo career with the album A Mon Tour d'Briller, and after creating the KDBZik label in 2003, followed it up with 2005's Dans la Lumiere. Focusing more on his various bands' activities during the rest of the 2000s, he resumed his solo career in 2012 with his third effort, Tout Dans la Tête. ~ Jon O'Brien