In the wake of his critically acclaimed and politically charged SNL performance as well as the release of his latest “conscious” LP, “i am > i was”; Atlanta based hip-hop phenomenon, 21 Savage has the entire industry zoning in on the status of his citizenship within the United States. As reported widely, on Feb. 3 2019 after being stopped by authorities; it was discovered that the ‘Bank Account’ hitmaker had been illegally in the country for over 6 years. 21 Savage is currently being held by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement without bail. Interestingly, the arrest comes less than a week after 21 Savage appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, where he performed an alternate take on his record “A Lot” containing lyrics that sympathize with those immigrating to the country. “Been through some things so I can’t imagine my kids stuck at the border / Flint still need water / People was innocent, couldn’t get lawyers,” 21 rapped on the Tonight Show stage.
It’s well known that 21 was born in the UK but moved and grew up in a rough area in Atlanta when he was only 12 years old. During that time Savage; whose birth name is (She’yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph) was affiliated with 2100 Street Gang in which he pays honor to in his stage name. Savage has faced many adversities including an attempt on his life where he was shot six times. He recalls in an interview with Fader magazine in 2016, Savage said he thought he was going to die. “A whole lot of blood loss. A whole lot of blood loss,”; and though he was charged with felony charges; he is not a convicted felon. 21 Savage’s real claim to fame is his passionate desire to want to inspire those who shared similar struggles as he did in his youth.
In 2018 21 expressed his desire to teach the hip-hop community about the importance of financial literacy; giving back and fighting for their dreams. Savage partnered with the non-profit organization Get Schooled where he gave 21 kids $1,000 each to open a new account and to learn about how banks work. He initiated the campaign “21 Savage Bank Account” by donating $21,000 in hopes of educating young people on managing, saving and making money. He also revealed that he would no longer be spending his earnings on excessive jewelry. During a recent feature for Vogue magazine, the Atlanta-born rapper addressed his decision; “I stopped wearing jewelry for a couple of reasons,” he explained while headed to the Saint Laurent Spring/Summer 2019 menswear show in NYC. “One is because everybody wears jewelry. I outgrew it; I’m getting a little wiser and growing so … Another reason is because the richest people that I’ve ever met in my life, they’ve never had on jewelry. Every time I meet someone who’s very, very rich, like wealthy, I’ve never seen them with jewelry on.
“And ever since I’ve been saving money and not spending it on jewelry, I’ve been getting way richer.”
It’s no surprise that many of hip-hop’s brightest stars are rallying behind the UK born rapper; J.Cole, Offset and Cardi B have all shared their solidarity with Savage. Georgia Congressman, Henry C. “Hank” Johnson tweeted out a 21 Savage endorsement letter to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). In his missive, Johnson called 21, a “remarkable young man” who “spends his time giving back to our community and has been living a life of paying it forward.” Hip-Hop mogul and superstar Jay Z also released a statement via RocNation stating he has hired a lawyer on behalf of Savage and further stated “In addition to being a successful recording artist, Savage deserves to be reunited with his children immediately.” The attorney hired by Jay, Alex Spiro, also released a statement; “We are not going to stop until he is released, bonded out or in front of a judge,” he told TMZ. “What we have here is someone who overstayed their Visa with an application pending for four years—not a convicted criminal that needs to be detained and removed but, by all accounts a wonderful person, father, and entertainer who has a marijuana offense which was vacated and sealed.”
As a media firm of world-class standards, we stand with and support 21 Savage during this time!