Wax On, Wax Off - OZY | A Modern Media Company

Wax On, Wax Off

By Austen Risolvato


Def Jam may have dropped him — but now he’s bigger and deffer than ever.

Everyone loves a comeback story.

For some artists, losing their big label deal is the end of the line. Not for 33-year-old rapper Wax, who is known for his thought provoking, humorous and self-inspecting lyrical style, and the hit single “Rosana.” That’s what caught the eye of mega-star maker L.A. Reid, who signed him to Def Jam Records in 2011. Yet, the relationship with the house that Russell Simmons built was short lived, and Wax and Def Jam parted ways in 2012. 

Amazingly, he seems to be doing just fine without them. His second album Continue, released in January 2013, muscled its way into slots on five Billboard charts, including #3 on Heatseekers, as well as the Top 10 Rap Albums on iTunes. Now he’s about to take off on the Vans Warped tour.  The ”Rosana” track rapper should probably just change his name to Hot Wax pretty soon. 

Slated to tour the country this summer on this tour, Wax will be tearing stages down just like he did in this glorious photo essay.

OZY photographer Austen Risolvato dug in with Wax and his band at the tour’s kickoff party in Los Angeles on April 1st. No fools here, just fans of great music from an artist that’s reclaiming his spotlight.

BW empty auditorium and seats

Inside of the auditorium before doors open

BW Wax and crew sitting on couches

Wax and crew sitting in the green room waiting for the green light to set up.

Wax drinking some a beverage before entering stage area

The calm before the storm. Taking a break before showtime.

WAX on floor setting up with individuals around him also setting up

The crew getting the final sound check in tune.

BW Wax's back as he takes picture holding phone up

Do it for the ’Gram: Wax taking a photo of the stage and seats

Group of people and many journalists standing before them

Wax with group of other performers at a press conference for the Warped Tour 2014.

Wax with headphones on

All Smiles: Rapper Wax on the Way Up

BW of 4 men standing together talking

The countdown: chilling with the team before hitting the stage.

Wax with arms in the air as he goes down stairs

Straighten it out: Wax doing some final stretches before going on stage

Wax rapping into mic walking to right of stage

Wax on stage performing before a packed audience in Club Nokia in downtown Los Angeles.

BWWider view from above of wax and crew performing

Life So Exciting: On stage at Club Nokia in downtown Los Angeles

Wax on right of frame rapping into mic with lens flare

Wax performing onstage at Club Nokia in downtown Los Angeles

Wax with another person as they look on

Wax off stage watching performers

Wax with cart and 3 bandmembers about to leave

Wax and band members with their equipment heading out

Wax and 3 others in elevator with equipment and metal netted door

Wax and crew in elevator with their equipment ending a long day

Final door of elevator closes shot as they leave

Until next time…


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