A few might know Osama Com Laude (OCL) by name, but most know him as the voice rapping behind Nouman Khalid’s song Desi Thumka — an anthem of all recent Pakistan Fashion Week ramps and a new staple at any wedding disk jockey’s turntables. Residing most of his life in Orlando, Florida, this self-proclaimed “shy and quiet guy” talks about himself and his upcoming music.
Although currently enrolled as a medical student at the Rawalpindi Medical College, OCL describes himself as anything less than a full-time rapper on his Twitter page (@OsamaComLaude) stating he’s a “med student by day then rapper the rest of the day.”
“It’s a tough balance between medicine and music but what I try to do is work on my music mostly when I am on vacation or when I’m not stressing over regular class tests, ward duties and exams,” he says, explaining how he finds a balance between his studies and passion.
Using his free time for music has paid-off well for OCL as it landed him an opportunity to perform and open for Ali Zafar in 2009, which led him to ultimately work with more musicians and singers. He explains he was approached by Nouman Khalid to rap on various songs for his sophomore album which did not include Desi Thumka.
“Once I was done recording those songs, Bilal Saeed and Khalid showed me the beat for what would eventually become the beast that is Desi Thumka. I wrote my parts on the spot and we recorded it that night,” say OCL. “Honestly, when I heard it, I knew it’d be a good solid dance track and would receive a positive response from critics and fans, but no way in hell could I have imagined that it would become as big a hit as it has is now.” He admits it was a pleasant surprise.
OCL is working on his very first extended play album, which will release in early 2013. PHOTO: PUBLICITY
After receiving such mainstream attention, OCL gravitated towards working on a solo project — his very first extended play album, to be released in early 2013. “I’ll be working with a lot of talented musicians; more music videos and hopefully, more fun projects in collaboration with big names from the Pakistani and American music industries are also on my agenda,” he says.
His second single will be Sunshine which is inspired by “the Sunshine State” of America, Florida, where OCL was raised. “It features Orlando-based rapper Da Beast with back-up vocals by Iyla Hussain and was mixed/mastered by Shaheer Shahid and Shamoon Ismail,” he adds, about the new song.
Confident about his rapping abilities, OCL confesses that he will be pursuing his passion forever. “Expect me 30 years from now walking out at the Grammys or MTV Video Music Awards with a customised walking stick and a microphone still doing my thing!” he laughs.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 7th, 2013.
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