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Hip Hop’s Most Controversial Artist: 6ix9ine

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Hip Hop’s Most Controversial Artist: 6ix9ine

Brady Cwynar, Entertainment Writer

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Daniel Hernandez, better known as Tekashi 6ix9ine, is a twenty-two-year-old rapper from Bushwick, Brooklyn. Before we get any further, for those asking what “6ix9ine” means–it means that no matter what way someone views you…you are no different than anyone else. When you look at a 9, from the other side you see a 6. But no matter what angle you view, you’re looking at the same number; it just looks different from where you are. Daniel wants to say that everyone is the same and nobody should be left out. While growing up, 6ix9ine was poor and had barely any money. Tekashi’s mother struggled to clothe him but was able to support him enough so be presentable to his classmates in school. The rapper ended up dropping out of school in eighth grade after his father was murdered. After dropping out, and while still a teenager, he had to rely on street crime to provide for his family. These actions eventually led to young Tekashi serving jail time. Not too long after he was released, Tekashi went out in public with a distinctive look, promoting provocative topics by wearing shirts and pants covered in inappropriate language. However, one outfit that he wore promoted awareness for people who suffer from HIV/AIDS, as one of his close friends suffered from the disease.

Tekashi then turned to music where he screams to make himself stand out from other rappers. Tekashi has face tattoos and rainbow hair, which also makes him stand out from the rest of the rappers on the rise. Tekashi met up with an artist from Ohio known as Trippie Redd, Michael Lamar White IV. Trippie worked alongside 6ix9ine and another not-too-popular rapper named UNOTHEACTIVIST to produce the song “OWEE”. While this track did not bring them big fame, it still performed well in the charts. It was not until 2017 when Trippie collaborated with Tekashi again on a song called ”Poles 1469” that they reached large recognition. This song blew up and currently has 125,000,000 streams on YouTube. “Poles 1469” gave the public and rap fans their major introduction to Tekashi. Not too long after the success of the song, 6ix9ine released the single “Gummo” on October 8, 2017, and the beat, produced by Pi’erre Bourne, was given to him by Trippie Redd. The single massively blew up and currently has 321,000,000 streams on YouTube.

The rapper released the album “Day69” in February, which landed spot number two on the Billboard Top 200. Nonetheless, the rapper became famous with millions of fans. The rapper had six hits on that album out of its thirteen songs. Some of the bigger ones such as ¨KOODA¨ and ¨BILLY¨ have landed him big numbers, and with big numbers comes big money. It was not until April 15, 2018, that Tekashi proved he was truly talented. On that day, 6ix9ine dropped “GOTTI”. “GOTTI” set aside his usually aggressive personality and was instead a melodic song, accompanied by a music video that was shot by the pool and palm trees of the Dominican Republic. The video also documents Tekashi’s donation of thousands of dollars to people who have lived a rough life in this area. This video and its act of kindness racked up 295,000,000 streams on YouTube and showed those who once doubted him that Tekashi can make any type of music that will appeal to hip-hop listeners. Following this release, on May 27, 2018, Tekashi dropped ¨Tati¨ where he returns to aggressive screaming once again. The song was another hit and added to his music that continues to collect over 115,000,000 streams on YouTube. This song was 6ix9ine’s seventh hit on the Billboard Top 100.

On July 22, 2018 6ix9ine released his most ever streamed track “FEFE”, which features widely known female hip-hop artist Nicki Minaj. 6ix9ine was allegedly kidnapped the morning “FEFE” was to be released. Hip-hop sources say he admitted himself to the hospital, and pictures rapidly spread of his face badly bruised. The story he tells of the encounter is that he was held at gunpoint at his house after the taping of the “FEFE” music video. The rapper was robbed of $750,000 in jewelry and $20,000 cash during this armed kidnapping/robbery. Despite that incident, “FEFE” became his most popular song yet, currently holding 571,000,000 streams on YouTube. After this release, 6ix9ine debuted music featuring Anuel AA called ”BEBE” which is 6ix9ine’s first all-Spanish song to represent his Mexican ethnicity. Even though most American’s don’t speak Spanish, “BEBE” has currently received astonishing 524,000,000 streams on YouTube. This Spanish song is currently 6ix9ine’s second-best performing song to ever debut. 6ix9ine’s final release before his incarceration and the debut of his second album was “STOOPID”, featuring Bobby Shmurda, who is currently in prison serving the final years of his seven-year sentence. This final and last single released before Tekashi was jailed piled up 115,000,000 streams on YouTube.

Currently, 6ix9ne  is currently under federal charges for serious crimes along with his former anagement and manager known as “Shotti”.  He was put into custody on November 19, 2018, right before the release of his second album, “DUMMY BOY”. “DUMMY BOY” was leaked while 6ix9ine was behind bars, but his management later delivered the message that Tekashi was upset about the leak. Before 6ix9ine was placed in jail, he parted ways with “Shotti” who is the leader of the 9 Trey Bloods. Federal officials feared that 6ix9ine’s life was in danger from this group and he was immediately taken into protective custody. 6ix9ine and his lawyer, Lance Lazzaro, both state that 6ix9ine has no connection to these charges and should be freed from their sentencing. 6ix9ine’s first time in front of the judge was denied bail, but the rapper has a court date late this January. His lawyer is submitting a bail of $1,500,000 and assuring 6ix9ine is no threat whatsoever to the community. An important note on his upcoming case is that he will be facing a new judge instead of the judge that had previously denied him bail. Though 6ix9ine is disliked in many circles , a lot of rappers including Nicki Minaj, Tory Lanez, and A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie recently shared a petition to the judge of his upcoming trial to show that there are a lot of people who stand behind 6ix9ine and support a ruling of bail.

There is definitely a full plate in front of 6ix9ine with the chances of being free or facing up to 35 years to life incarceration. With all this said, let’s take a moment to set aside 6ix9ine’s hardships and focus on his achievements. 6ix9ine was able to mass 15,600,000 Instagram followers in one year. He was also able to make 10 straight Billboard Top 100 hits, an achievement that is unheard of even for the some of today’s best artists. In the midst of all these issues, the rapper was able to collaborate with many famous artists such as Nicki Minaj, A Boogie Wit A Hoodie, Tory Lanez, Fetty Wap, Bobby Shmurda, and many more. 6ix9ine was also performing shows in different countries and was accepted for his first show in America. 6ix9ine has appeared on many famous podcasts as well. Tekashi also has custom exclusive jewelry that changed the history of bling. Some notable pieces are his flooded out pendants–one is a spinning 69 pendant on an iced out Cuban link chain, and his flooded out jigsaw pendant also on an iced-out Cuban link chain. He also has custom rings, watches, and anything you could imagine when it comes to jewelry. Despite current events and constant media weigh-ins, 6ix9ine has achieved a lot, especially for someone who grew up in Bushwick, Brooklyn. For Tekashi, there is one certainty: both he and his family will be facing tremendous adversity throughout 2019.

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Hip Hop’s Most Controversial Artist: 6ix9ine