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2 Chainz

Tauheed Epps is an Atlanta-born hip-hop artist, better known as 2 Chainz. Formerly known as “Tity Boi”, 2 Chainz was the former member of a hip-hop duo, “Playaz Circle”. Signed under Ludacris' Disturbing tha Peace label, the duo was active for over a decade in between 1997 and 2010. 2 Chainz solo debut did not come until 2011, the year he underwent the change from “Tity Boi” to 2 Chainz. This was primarily in fact of “Tity Boi” being derogatory towards women, however 2 Chainz has reaffirmed that the nickname was given to him by his mother for his extended time being breastfed as an infant. In February 2012, 2 Chainz signed a solo deal to Def Jam Records.

Early Life

Tauheed Epps was born on September 12, 1977 in College Park, GA. Tauheed went to North Clayton High School, where R&B singer Monica also attended school. During his high school days, Tauheed was arrested for possession of cocaine, a scheduled I drug in the United States. However, such an altercation with the law did not stunt Tauheed's excelling youth. Standing 6'5”, he went on to join the school's basketball team. His achievement and skill as a ball player earned him an athletic scholarship to Alabama State University. Not long after graduating from high school, Tauheed started a hip-hop duo with his high-school friend, Earl Conyers (Dolla Boy).

Musical Career

Playaz Circle

Donning the name “Tity Boi”, Tauheed and Earl would spend over a decade making music as a duo. Playaz Circle, formed in College Park, GA in 1997 started slow, and did not become signed until the release of their independent album titled United We Stand, United We Fall. Signed by Ludacris following the release of this album in 2002. Playaz Circle was signed to Disturbing Tha Peace, a subsidiary of Def Jam Recordings. It is noted that while Epps decided to sign the label, Conyers did not join until a year later. This was due in fact to Conyers mother falling ill around the time of Epp's initial signing.

The lead and debut single from their album Supply & Demand, “Duffle Bag Boy” became a hit single. More success followed for the duo with the release of Flight 360: The Takeoff in September of 2009. In January of 2010, Playaz Circle went on to film a music video with Lil Wayne and Birdman for their single “Big Dawg”. Shortly after this collaboration, Tauheed decided it was time to leave Disturbing Tha Peace. Initially Ludacris was reluctant to let such talent go, as Tauheed had proven to be financially lucrative, however Ludacris had to come to terms with the decision.

2 Chainz

As the name “Tiy Boi” came off derogatory to his intended audience, it was time for Tauheed to make a change. Tauheed has repeatedly denied that “Tity Boi” was ever meant to be offensive, stating that the name was given to him by his mother since birth, for his affection to breastfeeding. Whatever the reasoning may be, 2Chainz came into fruition sometime in early 2011. This name was perceived to be more family friendly and marketable towards his targeted audience. Following the change of his name, Tauheed Epps released his mixtape entitled T.R.U. REALigion which became the first official 2Chainz mixtape to appear on music charts. The mixtape peaked at number 58 on the US Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, and since the success of the mixtape, 2Chainz has been seen with a variety of notable artists. Such artists include but are not limited to: Kanye West, Nicki Minaj, Drake, Pharell, and newer hits with Lil Wayne.

On August 14th, 2012 Epps released B.O.A.T.S. Based On a T.R.U. Story (originally titled T.R.U. to My REALigion). Lead singles from this album included “No Lie” featuring Canadian rapper Drake. Based On a T.R.U. Story debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200. The album sold 147,000 copies in the first week. As of August 2013, the album has sold over 600,000 copies. Great things came for Tauheed after the release of this album. After the album release, Tauheed did his first solo worldwide tour, selling out on most dates. Tauheed was nominated for thirteen BET Hip Hop Awards and brought home 4 trophies. In 2012, Tauheed earned Source Magazine's “Man of the Year”, released a collaboration with ADIDAS, and later with Beats by Dre. Tauheed was also nonimated for three Grammy awards, including Best Rap Album. He did not continue to win these nominations.

Following the success of B.O.A.T.S. Based on a T.R.U. Story, Tauheed went on to release B.O.A.T.S. II: Me Time in September of 2013. The album debuted as number three on the US Billboard 200 and number two on the Top R&B Hip Hop Albums chart selling 63,000 copies in the first week. While not as major of a commercial success as his first album, it can be noted that the second album was met with generally positive reviews from music creatives.

At the age of 15, Tauheed was arrested for the felony charge of cocaine possession. In February of 2013, Epps was arrested for possession of cannabis in the state of Maryland. In June of 2013, Epps was arrested while on board a departing flight at Los Angeles Airport for possession of cannabis and promethazine. Tauheed was booked and charged with felony narcotics posession.

Discography

Awards and nominations

BET Hip Hop Awards

  • 2012: Reese's Perfect Combo: “Mercy” (Won)
  • 2012: Track of the Year: “No Lie” (Nominated)
  • 2012: Sweet 16, Best Featured Verse: “Mercy” (Won)
  • 2012: Rookie of the Year (Won)
  • 2012: People's Champ Award: “No Lie” (Won)
  • 2012: MVP of the Year (Nominated)
  • 2012: Made You Look Award (Nominated)
  • 2012: Hustler of the Year (Nominated)
  • 2012: Best Hip Hop Video: “Mercy” (Nominated)
  • 2012: Best Hip Hop Video: “No Lie” </small>
  • 2012: Best Club Banger: “Mercy” (Nominated)

Grammy Awards

  • 2013: Best Rap Song: “Mercy” (Nominated)
  • 2013: Best Rap Performance: “Mercy” (Nominated)
  • 2013: Best Rap Album: Based on a TRU Story (Nominated)

Soul Train Awards

  • 2012: Best Hip Hop Song of the Year: “Mercy” (Won)
  • 2012: Best Hip Hop Song of the Year: “No Lie” (Nominated)


Music | Hip Hop


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