Nunavut rapper, Ehski, is bursting onto the hip hop scene with his debut album, Final Legacy. The 11-track album was released across streaming platforms on August 25, 2023.
The creation of Final Legacy was inspired during Ehski’s time in the 2021-2022 Ajungi Mentorship Program, created by Iqaluit-based record label, Hitmakerz, and sponsored by FACTOR. Going into the mentorship, Ehski had songs ready to record, but the program gave him the tools to make the album a reality. He received one-on-one mentoring sessions about performance skills, production, music business, entertainment law, and marketing before recording his album in October 2022.
Ehski mixes gritty hip hop beats with honest lyrics about resilience, his community, and his own life story. His lyrics are written in both English and Inuktitut. The album aims to remind people that everyone faces challenges – and everyone can overcome them.
“I want people to know they’re not alone. I am also here fighting against my problems,” said Ehski. “I want them to know that they’re not alone: they can speak with their friends, trusted family, or even a stranger that is willing to listen such as a therapist, counselor, psychologist, or a doctor.”
Final Legacy was produced by Tev Bourque of Tev Sound (Brenda Montana, Birdie Whyte, John Carroll) and was recorded at Bourque’s studio in Ottawa. It includes features from Thor Simonsen and Shauna Seeteenak. The album was released through Hitmakerz and distributed by CD Baby. Financial support was provided by the Government of Nunavut.
While Final Legacy is Ehski’s first album, his original song “Inuurama (I Am a Person)” was previously featured on the 2019 Ajungi compilation album. In 2018, he opened for his late cousin and JUNO-nominated artist, Kelly Fraser, at a performance.
Originally from Sanikiluaq, Nunavut, Ehski started making music at 13 years old. He comes from a Christian family, where many of his relatives sing gospel, but he’s the first of his family to rap. When Ehski was 16 years old, he went to Young Offenders in Iqaluit. There, he began writing poems and lyrics as a way to stay busy and support his emotional wellbeing. It was also through writing lyrics that Ehski improved his English.
“[Music] helps me mentally, spiritually, emotionally, where it can lead me somewhere physically that is destined for me,” said Ehski.