Who is Bobby Shmurda?
Ackquille Jean Pollard, popular by his stage name Bobby Shmurda, is an American rapper and songwriter who gained instant fame after the video of his song 'Hot Nigga' went viral. His 'Shmoney dance' from the video became a rage nationwide, which helped him sign a record deal with Epic Records. His song has been remixed numerous times by a number of big artists in the music industry, including Juicy J, French Montana, Lil' Kim, Gunplay and T.I. Stars like Beyoncé and Jay Z have also made reference to his dance style. As a child Shmurda received several compliments about his talent as an entertainer. However, it is only after attaining fame did he realize his potential and decided to show his talent in several fields. He wanted to rap, make videos, act in movies – pretty much become the next 50 Cent. Unfortunately, his career came to an abrupt halt after he was arrested on a number of charges and was sentenced to 7 years in prison. However, his lawyer is hopeful that his sentence will be reduced due to good behavior.
Childhood & Early Life
Bobby Shmurda was born on August 4, 1994, in Miami, Florida. His father is from Trinidad, while his mother is from Jamaica. He has an older brother named Javese Pollard.
In 1995, when he was only one year old, his father, Gervase Johnson, was sentenced to life in prison for attempted murder. His mother later relocated to the East Flatbush area of Brooklyn.
According to Shmurda, he grew up "in the jungle". He used to be out on the streets most of the time, picking up fights, often with older children. He suffered from attention deficit disorder (ADD) in school, and would often run out of class, finishing his assignments in a hurry.
Shmurda used to make his own "mad" versions of popular songs by 50 Cent and Jay Z. He was influenced by artists like 2Pac, Biggie, Lil Wayne, Juvenile and Trick Daddy. In 2004, at the age of ten, he remixed his first song 'Knuck If You Buck' by Crime Mob.
He followed his older brother and his friends, who started selling drugs when they were only in the 9th grade. As he would later mention in his lyrics, he had been selling crack since he was in the fifth grade.
During his early days, he even faced legal issues a number of times. He was initially arrested on a gun charge that was later dropped. However, he then violated his probation terms and ended up being detained for 15 months.
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Even though Bobby Shmurda began remixing songs when he was only 10 years old, his career took off in 2014, when he posted the song 'Hot Nigga' on YouTube. He came up with the idea of the song after listening to Lloyd Banks’ 'Jackpot', which immediately enticed him with its beat.
He made a music video and accompanied it with a performance of his trademark 'Shmoney dance'. The video received over 2,000 views within a day and made him popular overnight. Soon, a number of Viners started to imitate his steps, which gave him even more exposure.
He next started to perform on stage with Meek Mill, who reached out to him after the success of his song. He also performed with Fabolous, and stars like Yo Gotti and Lil Durk showed interest in working with him.
He has been a part of 'GS9', a rap group from Brooklyn, New York. The group released a mixtape in July 2014 titled 'Shmoney Shmurda (Shmixtape)', featuring songs by Bobby Shmurda and others.
In July 2014, American rapper Jay Z mentioned 'Shmoney dance' in one of his songs during his 'On the Run Tour'. His wife Beyoncé, on the same tour, showed some of the dance moves during her performance of 'Flawless'.
Soon after, Canadian rapper Drake used the song in his introduction at the ESPY Awards ceremony. Moreover, top artists like Juicy J, French Montana, Lil' Kim, Gunplay and T.I. started to remix the song, adding their own verses to its lyrics. On July 22, 2014, he was signed by Epic Records for a record deal.
In August 2014, he performed his 'Shmoney dance' on stage alongside Drake on his 'Drake vs. Lil Wayne Tour'. He also featured on Rico Love's single 'Bank Roll'.
He released a reggae remix of the song on August 29, 2014, featuring Junior Reid, Mavado, Popcaan and Jah X. On September 5, he released another official remix of the song, which had additional vocals from Chris Brown, Jadakiss, Fabolous, Rowdy Rebel, Busta Rhymes and Yo Gotti.
On November 10, 2014, he released his debut EP from Epic Records, titled 'Shmurda She Wrote'. The EP contained the lead single 'Hot Nigga' and the promotional song 'Bobby Bitch'.
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He appeared as a guest on the television show 'Real Husbands of Hollywood' in the episode 'Hart Medication: Part 1' on season four of the show. The episode aired on September 1, 2015.
Bobby Shmurda, who is sometimes referred to as a one track wonder, is most famous for his song 'Hot Nigga'. The accompanying music video, with 'Shmoney dance' choreographed by him, took the rap world by storm in 2014.
Awards & Achievements
Bobby Shmurda's song 'Hot Nigga' peaked at number 6 on the US 'Billboard Hot 100' chart. His debut EP 'Shmurda She Wrote' ranked 5th on US 'Billboard Top Rap Albums' chart.
Personal Life & Legacy
After Bobby Shmurda became famous, his manager advised him move out of Flatbush, Brooklyn, the area he grew up in. However, that was not enough for him to stay out of trouble. He got entangled in legal issues right after his rise to fame.
On June 3, 2014, he was arrested on charges of criminal possession of a weapon. He was later released on $10,000 bail.
On December 17, 2014, he was arrested again, along with his 'GS9' band members including his older brother, for alleged involvement in a massive drug ring. He was charged with a number of criminal offenses, including conspiracy to commit murder, reckless endangerment, and drug and gun possession.
During this time, it was reported that his girlfriend, Kimberly Rousseau, was charged for smuggling a knife into jail after Shmurda was arrested. However, those close to Shmurda claimed that the rapper was single and the girl was just a fan.
He was convicted on September 2, 2016, after pleading guilty, and was sentenced to 7 years in prison. However, his sentence was reduced to five years, counting towards the sentence the two years he served awaiting trial.
Ironically, Bobby Shmurda was arrested for crimes he often mentioned in his lyrics. Some think that his sudden rise to fame also led to his quick arrest, as it has been reported that the New York detectives follow rap videos on YouTube to monitor street gangs.