Video: 2 Chainz Announces B.O.A.T.S. II: Me Time
In the growing turmoil of today's NSA scandals, award-winning Def Jam/T.R.U. (The Real University) artist 2 Chainz, one of the most prominent rappers to emerge in 2012-2013, is charging ahead with his brand new single "Feds Watching" (featuring Pharrell), the lead track from his hotly anticipated second album, B.O.A.T.S. II: ME TIME. The new album's title and release date, 9TEN/13 (Sept. 10th) were kept under wraps until their official announcement by Chainz in his hometown of Atlanta, at this past weekend's Hot 107.9 radio annual Birthday Bash super-concert.
2 Chainz actually premiered "Feds Watching" at the recent sold-out Hot 97 Summer Jam concert at New Jersey's MetLife Stadium. The track then made its radio premiere down in Atlanta on The Rickey Smiley Morning Show over Hot 107.9, syndicated in over 60 markets. Listen to "Feds Watching" now at: http://www.justjared.com/2013/06/09/2-chainz-feds-watching-feat-pharrell-listen-now/. And check out this "Making Of" feature with Pharrell: http://www.vibe.com/article/exclusive-pharrell-making-2-chainz-feds-watching-single.
Now the campaign leading up to the release of B.O.A.T.S. II: ME TIME is on, with "Feds Watching" gaining traction at Urban and hip-hop radio formats, as it was named last week's #9 Greatest Gainer. At the same time, online features have poured in from MTV RapFix, Idolator, Complex, Hypebeast, HighsNobiety, Rap-Up, RapRadar, 2dopeboyz, GoodMusicAllDay, Thisis50, and many more.
B.O.A.T.S. II: ME TIME is the follow-up to Based On A T.R.U. Story, 2 Chainz' debut album (released August 2012), which entered Soundscan at #1 with 140,000 first week sales. The album's success was fueled by "No Lie" featuring Drake, the first advance single, which hit #1 on the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and #2 on the Rap Songs chart, and reached inside the Top 30 on the Hot 100 list. At the 2012 BET Hip-Hop Awards, "No Lie" won the Peoples Champ Award, and Chainz won for Rookie Of The Year. He went on to open for Drake on his sold-out, two month, 27-city Club Paradise Tour.
Prior to the release of Based On A T.R.U. Story, 2 Chainz attracted attention when he stole a verse on "Mercy," fellow Def Jam artist Kanye West/G.O.O.D. Music's RIAA platinum #1 R&B/#1 Rap hit. At the 2012 Soul Train Music Awards, "Mercy" edged out "No Lie" to win the category of Best Hip-Hop Song Of the Year. At this year's 2013 Grammy Awards®, "Mercy" was nominated for Best Rap Song and Best Rap Performance, and Based On A T.R.U. Story was nominated for Best Rap Album.
The arrival of 2 Chainz, who made his television acting debut last month on NBC's Law & Order: SVU, was one of the year's major artist development breakthroughs. The 6 foot-5 inch rapper brought a reputation for one-upping the competition by arriving via helicopter at rooftop T.R.U. listening parties, and the kind of grandiose ambition that an MC from Southside Atlanta needs to chase down the American Dream. "No rapper currently working conveys a sense of impending arrival the way he does," raved the New York Times, "every sentence of his can be roughly translated to: 'I just got here! And I'm thrilled!'. The confidence and directness he displays make him an underdog worth rooting for."
2 Chainz is a product of the competitive Atlanta scene that spawned his first group, the duo Playaz Circle (in which he was known as Tity Boi). They made their mark back in '07 with the rap-R&B-pop crossover hit "Duffle Bag Boy" featuring Lil' Wayne on the hook, on the DTP (Disturbing Tha Peace)/Def Jam label. Chainz' solo career began with his first mixtape, 2007's Me Against The World, then the double-disc mixtape All Ice On Me in 2009, followed by his two-part Trapavelli series.
Proving that he could write street anthems with crossover appeal, he capitalized on his notoriety with the back-to-back mixtape releases of Codeine Withdrawal in 2010, and Codeine Cowboy in 2011. (The graphic 25-minute Codeine Cowboy documentary film has logged over 782,000 YouTube views to date: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b3Lvc9eYMOE). His 2011 mixtape T.R.U. REALigion mined downloads in the millions. His 'hit' tracks, signatures that include "Riot," "Boo" featuring Yo Gotti, and the Drumma Boy-produced smash single "Spend It," established a new sphere of influence for the lanky, outspoken rapper.
When GQ asked 2 Chainz about B.O.A.T.S. II: ME TIME, he politely told the magazine, "Everyone's sold dope, f*cked bitches, popped champagne, shot guns. I'll take the extra minutes to do it a new way."
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