The American rapper known as 21 Savage was born Shayaa Bin Abraham-Joseph in 1992. Shayaa was born in Dominica, but spent his formative years growing up in Atlanta. His childhood was filled with turmoil; by the time he was in middle school, he’d been charged with gun possession and expelled from every school in the county, ultimately ending up in a detention center as a young teen.
Despite his upbringing, in his early twenties, Shayaa found solace in rap music, adopting the moniker 21 Savage and determining to launch a career for himself as a performer. His debut single, “Picky,” arrived in 2014, produced by friend and mentor DJ Plugg. 21 Savage’s debut mixtape, The Slaughter Tape, arrived a few months later, in May of 2015. Another mixtape, Slaughter King, arrived a few months later, before 21 Savage’s debut EP, Free Guwop, in July of 2015.
21 Savage experienced his first big breakthrough when his second EP, Savage Mode, landed in the top ten on the R&B/hip-hop charts in the United States. The EP also rose into the top forty on the mainstream charts. The EP spawned 21 Savage’s first charting singles—“X” (featuring Future) and “No Heart” (featuring Metro Boomin.) Both songs reached into the top ten on the rap charts, top twenty on the R&B/hip-hop charts, and top forty on the mainstream charts.
Most recently, 21 Savage released his debut studio album, Issa Album, in 2017. On the strength of the lead single, “Bank Account,” the album rose to the number two spot on not only the rap charts, but also the R&B/hip-hop and mainstream charts. The single reached into the top twenty on the mainstream charts as well. Clearly, 21 Savage is an artist on the rise and one to watch in the coming years. His latest work is the top five collaborative album, titled “Without Warning” and recorded with Offset and Metro Boomin. 21 Savage is also featured on the 2017 Post Malone number one single, “Rockstar.”