Published May 15, 2017To be an artist who's not only had a 20-year career, but a successful one, is almost a rarity in hip-hop music. While many have attempted this feat, they often drift off the radar, leaving an incomplete legacy and multiple unanswered questions. For 2 Chainz, his ability to consistently re-invent himself has allowed him to live two lives in the music industry — one with a bourgeoning group in Atlanta during the rise of the South, and one as a mega superstar across the world. Whether speaking about the street life as Tity Boi, floating over production as 2 Chainz, or giving back to the community as Tauheed Epps, 2 Chainz is a man of the people.
1. Before He Was Known As 2 Chainz, He Was Tity Boi
Before he adopted the name 2 Chainz, alongside his Playaz Circle crewmate, Tauheed Epps performed under the stage name Tity Boi. However, contrary to what many believe, the term Tity Boi has zero relevance to a woman's anatomy or his affinity for breasts. In fact, as an only child, Tauheed is nicknamed Tity Boi (or Tity Man) by his father — a Southern phrase to describe a spoiled brat.
2. Ludacris Gave 2 Chainz His First Major Opportunity With Disturbing The Peace
While Dolla Boy is incarcerated, Ludacris, who has co-founded record label Disturbing Tha Peace (DTP) and is rapidly becoming one of the highest paid rappers in the South, gives Tity Boi the opportunity to get away from the street life and work strictly on music. "Chris basically sent Chaka Zulu [co-CEO of DTP] to my house and said man let's do [the rap thing] for real," he says of the offer.
3. …And Then 2 Chainz Paid $100K To Break That Contract
As Playaz Circle's momentum started to dwindle, 2 Chainz' desire to have a better career grew, which lead him to expresses his concerns to DTP. Ludacris disagrees with 2 Chainz' decision to leave, knowing the value he brings. 2 Chainz' pays $100K to break his contract. "I been wanting to leave the label, when I left, I guess they knew or had some type of vision that I wasn't gonna stop there, because I was turnt up when I left and I told them, so yeah I had to pay to leave," he'll tell hiphopdx.com in 2013.
4. 2 Chainz Had A Nine-Hour Standoff With Police in 2013
On August 22, 2013, 2 Chainz's tour bus is pulled over by police in Oklahoma City. After a nine-hour standoff, which includes a passenger holding a copy of the U.S. Constitution against the window, police obtain a search warrant. 2 Chainz and ten other individuals are arrested on misdemeanour complaints of obstruction for their refusal to leave the bus. Police also find two semi-automatic pistols, a 12-gauge shotgun, prescription painkillers and marijuana residue. He pays a fine and victims' compensation assessment the following year.
5. 2 Chainz Consistently Gives Back To The Community
In 2015, 2 Chainz establishes his T.R.U. Foundation, and starts selling "Dabbin' Santa" sweaters for the holidays; proceeds of over two million dollars are used to help families in need, including paying rent for Deidre Plater, a disabled veteran and single mother. The following year, he launches a fashion line called CEO (Create Every Opportunity) Millionaires, and re-launches the Dabbin Santa sweater. He sells a diamond-encrusted sweater for $90,000, and uses proceeds to gift a family in need with a wheelchair-accessible van; he also donates an undisclosed amount to the United Negro College Fund.