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A widely respected, down-to-earth rapper and singer -- as well as a producer, arranger, and engineer -- Phonte (aka Percy Miracles, El Tigallo) was a member of Little Brother, a trio that formed during the late ‘90s at North Carolina Central University. Within years of formation, Little Brother became the leading alternative rap group of their time. While LB were still thriving, Phonte established the Foreign Exchange with Dutch producer Nicolay; that act debuted in 2004 with Connected, then made a marked shift toward moody, left-of-center R&B with the Grammy-nominated Leave It All Behind (2008) and Authenticity (2010). Little Brother disbanded in April 2010; within a year and a half, Phonte released his first solo rap album, Charity Starts at Home. Throughout his career, Phonte has been involved with numerous outside projects; he collaborated with DJ Mitsu, Murs, Darien Brockington, DJ Shadow, 4hero, and the Roots, among several others, and recorded a series of side-splitting (but affectionate) covers EPs with multi-instrumentalist Zo!, one of his Foreign Exchange associates. ~ Andy Kellman