Former Brookhaven student releases rap album

Brandon Donner, Photo Editor

While playing beats out loud on loop a, AJ Chaka, former Brookhavean and rapper, sits in the studio writing until he has a solid scheme. After creating the perfect concept, he starts recording until he has a solid draft before starting the song’s mastering process.


Chaka’s experience with music began at the age of 4 when he imitated his favorite performers such as NAS, Jay-Z and Kendrick Lamar. He and his cousins made videos on his mom’s computer, according to his artist profile on Neo Golden Entertainment/Music Group’s website. 

Chaka was born and raised in Sacramento, California. He moved to Texas at 14. With the help of his cousin who goes by the stage name Pluto, Chaka was introduced to other rappers, according to Voyage Dallas. 

During that time, Chaka met rapper Nino Brown. “He told me if I write every day for the rest of the summer, ‘You are going to be a beast,’” Chaka said. Brown also went on to teach him song structure and how to build songs with proper bars and choruses.

The opportunity to freestyle in front of other rappers allowed Chaka to develop his skills and confidence. “My biggest obstacle to overcome was building the confidence and just having a full vision of what I want to do and executing it,” Chaka said.


Chaka focused his energy on school and graduated from MacArthur High School in 2016. It was after graduation when Chaka and his mother took a serious step toward his pursuing a music career. 

According to Voyage Dallas, Chaka’s mother Ms. K, quit her job and together they started Neo Gold Entertainment, an independent record label and artist development, management and booking company. 

When Chaka reflects on his musical journey, he said he went through a path of self-discovery. He said he wanted to learn how his favorite rappers took their time to write their metaphors, but also admired an artist’s ability to write off the top of their head like Jay-Z.

“I feel like my best songs come from when I write them down, occasionally if I’m lacking resources to write things down, then I’ll write them in my head,” Chaka said.

Marcus Boyd, a music producer and composer, said he has never heard of an artist with so much talent, drive and passion for his music. Chaka’s mother and manager reached out to Boyd to help Chaka with beat production.

Boyd said Chaka is one of the easiest artists he has ever worked with. “He is not too picky and he is more focused on the music he writes,” he said. “When he picks out beats, he picks out beats that allow him to truly tell a story and express himself through music.”


Chaka is no stranger to collaboration. John Jiggs, a rapper, collaborated with Chaka on “Mic Check” in June. “He was extremely focused to be so young,” he said. “[He is] talented, energetic. You don’t meet a lot of kids his age that are really focused on what they want.”

Jiggs said when they worked in the studio, it felt as if they were not working. “He knew what direction he wanted to go in and I just helped him bring his point across,” Jiggs said. The duo will continue to work together on future projects, he said.

Chaka has been hard at work and it paid off. In 2019, he opened for artist Jarren Benton at SXSW. 

That same year he won the  #IAmDallasHipHopChallenge and performed at the Granada Theater in Dallas for the annual “I Am Dallas Hip Hop” concert.

This year Chaka released his  album, “Trill as It Gets,” on Aug. 27. Shortly after the release, Billboard Hip Hop labeled “Trill as It Gets” as album of the week. The album is available to stream on Amazon Prime Music, Apple Music, Tidal, Deezer and Spotify. 

As for his future plans, Chaka said he wants to collaborate  with other local artists and also plans to release visuals for some of his previously released songs and marketing and  He also has  plans to re-release a deluxe edition of “Trill as It Gets.”