This just in: NPR announced the winner of their Tiny Desk Contest this morning. Their choice? Oakland’s Fantastic Negrito.
While we missed Fantastic Negrito (real name Xavier Dphrepaulezz) in our initial round-up, eagle-eyed commenters quickly set us straight and alerted us to his entry. Shot in a freight elevator in Oakland, the video was selected out of nearly 7,000 entries by a panel of musical experts—among them Reggie Watts, Valerie June and local favorite Thao Nguyen. Watch his submission here:
Fantastic Negrito is an almost-lifelong Oaklander and long-time musician with a helluva life story. Dephrepaulezz makes, by his own admission, “blues music with a punk attitude.” All Things Considered will air an interview with him today.
Our deepest appreciation to all the Bay Area bands that participated, and our sincere congratulations to the very deserving winner. We’d also like to extend thanks to NPR for selecting one of our own. In doing so, they’ve confirming that the Bay Area’s scene—and especially the oft-underrepresented Oakland—is as rich and vibrant as ever.