In the summer of 2010, at a block party in downtown Manhattan, a sixteen-year-old named Patrick Morales did something that had become a habit for him: he charged his way to the front of the crowd and began to rap. Given his talent and charisma, the intrusion was welcome. In the audience was a Harlem producer named Eric Adiele, who later said that Morales struck him as “this kind of rapping . . . New York Bart Simpson.”

At the party, once the background music stopped, Morales—who is half Puerto Rican and half Irish, and goes by Wiki—continued to rap. Adiele approached Wiki about collaborating. (“I make beats, you’re not corny,” Adiele, who goes by Sporting Life, told him.) Eventually, the pair, along with another rapper, named Hak (Hakeem Lewis), formed a group called Ratking.

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