A Washington D.C.-area artist is exploring new heights and embarking on a journey that will not only test his talent, but also his survival skills.
Koleco Elizaire, better known as Knoimnot, is a local R&B artist in the metropolitan area who is headed for his first world tour, appropriately called, “I DNT KNOW WAT IM DOIN.”
Washington D.C. artist Koleco Elizaire, aka Knoimnot, is planning an international tour for mid-September through November. (Courtesy photo)
“It’s a huge leap of faith, but I feel like it’s worth it,” Elizaire told the AFRO. “I’m probably like one of the first out of this area to really do this.” For the record, multiple D.C. based artists have been on world tours including, Wale, EU and the Chuck Brown Band among others.
From Sept. 18-Nov. 8, Elizaire is scheduled to travel to London, Brussels, Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Berlin, Milan, Barcelona, Paris, Tokyo, Seoul and Los Angeles.
“I’ve never been overseas,” he said. “I’m going out to different countries and surviving. It’s only two ways out of this tour, you’re either alive or you die. I’m testing this.”
The Maryland native said he is no stranger to getting things done on his own. After completing a tour in the United States in October of 2016, he said he had specific goals in mind to advance himself and his music, which lead to more networking opportunities, self-employment at 22 and world travel.
“I’m definitely not the same person from last year. I learned about my values so much,” he said, referencing that he found a greater connection to the spiritual by respecting other’s perspectives, listening and asking questions.
Elizaire is now 23-years-old and within less than two years he has not only hosted music and art showcases in D.C. with music groups such as Last Niight, but also performed at the South by Southwest (SXSW) 2017 film festival and opened for Atlanta-based rapper 21 Savage. Elizaire said he continues to travel nationally. “I’m going where the gigs are,” he said.
Elizaire’s first stop is in London. He said his mission while on tour is to land three or more gigs during each stop. So far, he has a gig lined up in Rotterdam and Japan.
“I’ve been going insane since I quit my job at Urban Outfitters,” he said. “Like doing my best to figure things out because I don’t know what I’m doing…It’s so scattered. The only way I can get a gig is if I show up and show out. I’m putting a limit on myself. It’s going to be very hard.”
Similar to his first tour, Elizaire also started a Go Fund Me page to pay for basic essentials such as housing and food while he is on tour. According to the page, he is trying to raise $4,000.As of Sept. 5 he has raised $2,609.
“People are paying attention a lot more,” he said.
Elizaire paid for his trip abroad by himself. “I could’ve gotten sponsorships, I could’ve gotten people to pay for my whole way, but that would ruin the concept of the tour,” he said. “People think that this tour is a DJ’ing tour….I’ll be DJ’ing, but it’s not just that.”
Instead, Elizaire said his goal is for the tour to teach him how to communicate more efficiently in order to express his true character.
“This tour is very important to me because I’m at a stage in my life where I want to learn how to speak to people without using words, without any form of verbal communication,” he said. “This will be the last year of Knoimnot. What I’ve done in two years as Knoimnot would define who Koleco is.”
On Sept. 15, Elizaire is scheduled to host a going away party called “Would You Vibe With Me” at Velvet Lounge, 915 U Street, NW. He will be performing with local artists, including Last Niight, Odd Mojo, The Experience and Arif Omari.
“I’m putting everyone in the middle of the floor to perform,” he said. “I don’t want no one on the stage except the crowd.”