Blessed to share his gift, Victor Oladipo releases EP

Victor Oladipo first began singing publicly in 2011.

It was near the end of his freshman year and Indiana University was holding its now annual end-of-the-year awards banquet, the Spirit of Indiana Showcase, which resembled the ESPYs.

Inside the IU Auditorium, he performed ‘U Got it Bad’ by Usher and killed it. It was April, 2011 and unfortunately the video has been deleted after being viewed more than 200,000 times.

That fall, he performed it again. This time, it was at Hoosier Hysteria and in front of an audience of nearly 18,000. (I remember it well, as I was on the broadcast for the Big Ten Network.)

Years later, and three teams later, Oladipo is back home in Indiana, acquired by the Pacers in June along with Domantas Sabonis in a deal that sent Paul George to Oklahoma City for the short-term.

And even before he suited up for a regular season game with the Blue & Gold, Oladipo released a single, music video, and now an EP.

His publisher? Feathery Music Group Inc. He trademarked “Feathery” last April.

The uber-talented 25-year-old released a seven-track EP last week on all major music platforms, like iTunes and Spotify. An EP, or Extended Play, is more than one track but not quite the length an album.

“A lot of people told me I should share my gift,” he said. “I found the opportunity to. I found the resources and the means to. I did it, and it turned out great.”

Oladipo says he has received overwhelmingly positive feedback from NBA players and artists alike. He even collaborated with 2 Chainz for a track.

“Yeah, I think that like it,” he said. “It’s pretty cool that other guys in the league might hear it. They said it’s pretty good, so it’s awesome in that sense as well. It’s all about the music. It was fun. It was a great experience.”

His songs are inspired by his experiences.

“What people might relate to, what I’m familiar with and what they’re used to. I think that’s the biggest thing, experiences and how people can relate.”

Singing began at a young age at the urging of his mother. It started at St. Joseph’s Church in his hometown of Marlboro, Maryland.

Last February, TNT highlighted him, former Pacer C.J. Miles, and others for their musical talents in the All-Star Talent Challenge.

So, over the summer Oladipo would record music in his free time. This EP was not recorded in one sitting nor one location.

“I recorded pretty much everywhere,” he said with a big smile. “A lot during the summer time in L.A., Miami, D.C. Different times, different parts of the day, different moments when I had free time. Just go in there and create, and it turned out good for us.”

Oladipo performs “U Got It Bad” in 2011. [Alex Farris Photography]

To this point, Oladipo has not sang the National Anthem before a game. He said in an interview with a hip-hop radio station that, despite several invitations from his previous teams (Orlando and Oklahoma City), he declined because he wants to be paid to do so. But that was before he was earning $21 million per season.

Perhaps the Pacers and his IU family can talk him into it.

Oladipo, however, appreciates the Pacers’ encouragement in all of this to continue to share his gift with world. But make no mistake, basketball is his passion and top priority. Music is his outlet. And it had only been an outlet to express himself away from basketball.

But now he has an EP.

Official video for “Song for You”:

[Photo: Frank McGrath/PS&E]

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