Enigmatic Houston emcee Tobe Nwigwe brings his whole team along for his debut on NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert series.

Started from #TwistedSundays, now he’s here.

Is anyone having the kind of 2019 that Tobe Nwigwe is having? The Houston-hailing rapper who wears the SWAT on his back like Superman’s cape has had a blessed couple of months to say the least. He took his talents all over the country on his debut headlining tour, “Tobe From The SWAT.” He and his wife Fat welcomed a baby daughter into their family as their newest “Original.” And his most recent accomplishment? Exposing himself even more to a national audience by way of a debut performance as a part of NPR’s long-running Tiny Desk Concert series.

Tobe’s defining characteristic has always been finding the light and positivity in things. Rap is often times about the struggle, the trinkets, and the battle, but Nwigwe has always rapped with purpose. Sometimes that purpose was affirmation; other times, it was encouragement. And sometimes, it was simply to show that a voice from Southwest Houston could body anyone else’s beat.

When Tobe wins, it’s never a sole victory, but one where the people around him win with him. His Tiny Desk Concert is no exception. Rather than appearing alone or with someone else’s band, Nwigwe brought his own. The backing voices that have appeared on many of Tobe’s past projects – Luke Whitney, Madeline Edwards, and David Michael Wyatt – his long-time producer LaNell Grant, and even his wife Fat and their child Baby Fat all squeeze into that space between the bookshelves at NPR. He starts, literally, by announcing his full Nigerian name and where he’s from (“I’m an Igbo boy from the Southwest side of Houston”), and the first song he performs is a Houston Tribute.

For fifteen minutes, Nwigwe captivates and educates. He jokingly (but seriously) remarks on the high standards Nigerian parents have, and how his initial announcement that he was pursuing rap disappointed his mom. Each song emphasizes a different side of Nwigwe’s flow. Every member of his team proudly rocks a “My First Tiny Desk” tee with her or his name on it. And Tobe shares the moment with them, too. Edwards’ vocals get a highlight on “Against the Grain.” Grant’s feature verse takes center stage during “Caged Birds,” and Luke Whitney flourishes on the bridge, as well. And Wyatt’s voice lays the foundation for the outro song, “I’m Dope.”

Watch Tobe Nwigwe’s Tiny Desk Concert with NPR for yourself up top. The bulk of the songs from Tobe’s performance can all be heard on the Tobe From The SWAT: The Live Experience LP, a recording of Nwigwe’s tour performances that is out now on iTunes.