University of Cincinnati Music Group, IGWE, is Making it Big

A group that writes their own music, believes in striving for success, and not letting anything stand in their way, University of Cincinnati’s IGWE is well on its way to stardom.
IGWE “Dey Hot”

A group that writes their own music, believes in striving for success, and not letting anything stand in their way.

Three talented students formed a music group three years ago in Cincinnati, Ohio with the goal of going national. IGWE: A Nigerian name meaning “king” or “boss,” was adopted by a group of young artists with the mentality of having a “Royal State of Mind.” IGWE consists of Carlton “CJ the Great” Fowlkes, 22,” Oni “Smooth O” Nwamu, 22, and Udo “Barcode” Nwamu, 25.

The young talented Communication majors at the University of Cincinnati started out as friends their freshmen year of college, going to parties and hanging out. It wasn’t until group member, CJ asked them to come to the studio and record a song that they knew they were going to become brothers for life.

“We recorded and remixed a song, and really had something. We started going to the studio and recording, then realized this was something we could actually pursue,” said Oni.

From that point on, the group worked on getting songs together and writing their own music. They would share their ideas with their close friends, and experimented with different types of music as well. Their music includes not only, Rap, but Hip Hop, Rock, Alternative, R&B, and Techno.

IGWE has performed with Royce Da 5’9 on his Bad Meets Evil Tour, Fonzworth Bentley at Fountain Squares Summer Slam Series, and Wale on his Ambition Tour. This group doesn’t have a publicist or agent, they work merely independently.

“It’s a crazy business. One thing that we learned fast is: have the business side of things in order, and be knowledgable about the business side” said CJ.

Not only has IGWE performed many times, but they have also worked with the University of Cincinnati’s Campus Recreational Center in making a video to promote the rec center as well as their group. The two-minute hip-hop track “iRec Anthem” was instantly a hit and because of the success of the track, IGWE is nominated for the NIRSA Award.

IGWE has released their single “Dey Hot” and it is now available on iTunes. Check out their YouTube videos at, follow them on Twitter @IGWEnation, “like” them on Facebook, and visit their website by going to

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