Future (rapper)

Last updated

Future (rapper) 2 2014.JPG
Wilburn performing in July 2014
Nayvadius DeMun Wilburn

(1983-11-20) November 20, 1983 (age 35)
Other names
  • Meathead [1]
  • Nayvadius Cash [2]
  • Future Hendrix [3]
  • The Wizrd
  • Caeser Lee [3]
  • Super Future [3]
  • Fire Marshall Future [3]
Years active2009–present
Partner(s) Ciara (2013–14; ex-fiancée)
Relatives Rico Wade (cousin) [4]
Awards List of awards and nominations
Musical career
Associated acts
Website Official Website

Nayvadius DeMun Wilburn (born November 20, 1983), known professionally as Future, is an American rapper, singer, songwriter, and record producer. Born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, Wilburn first became involved in music as part of the Dungeon Family collective, where he was nicknamed "the Future". After amassing a series of mixtapes between 2010 and 2011, Future signed a major record label deal with Epic Records and Rocko's A1 Recordings, which helped launch Future's own label imprint, Freebandz. He subsequently released his debut album, Pluto , in April 2012 to positive reviews. Future's second album, Honest , was released in April 2014, surpassing his debut on the album charts.

The Dungeon Family is a hip hop/R&B/soul musical collective, based in Atlanta, Georgia and specializing in Southern hip hop with heavy funk and soul influences. The group derives its name from "The Dungeon", the name given to record producer Rico Wade's studio, located in the basement of his mother's house, where many of the early members of the collective did their first recordings. Rico Wade, Ray Murray, and Sleepy Brown constitute the production/songwriting team Organized Noize, who have produced hits for the main popular Dungeon Family groups Outkast and Goodie Mob.

Mixtape compilation of songs recorded onto any audio format

A mixtape is a compilation of music, typically from multiple sources, recorded onto a medium. With origins in the 1980s, the term normally describes a homemade compilation of music onto a cassette tape, CD, or digital playlist. The songs are either ordered sequentially or made into a continuous program by beatmatching the songs and creating seamless transitions at their beginnings and endings with fades or abrupt edits. Essayist Geoffrey O'Brien described this definition of the mixtape as "perhaps the most widely practiced American art form".

Epic Records American record label

Epic Records is an American record label owned by Sony Music Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, Inc., the North American division of Japanese conglomerate Sony. The label was founded predominantly as a jazz and classical music label in 1953, but later expanded its scope to include a more diverse range of genres, including pop, R&B, rock, and hip hop. Epic Records has released music by artists including Glenn Miller, Tammy Wynette, George Michael, The Yardbirds, Donovan, Shakin Stevens, Europe, Cheap Trick, Meat Loaf, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Ted Nugent, Shakira, Sly & the Family Stone, The Hollies, Celine Dion, ABBA, Culture Club, Boston, Dave Clark Five, Gloria Estefan, Pearl Jam, Rage Against the Machine, and Michael Jackson. Along with Arista, Columbia and RCA Records, Epic is one of Sony Music Entertainment's four flagship record labels.


Between late 2014 and early 2015, he released a trio of mixtapes to critical praise: Monster (2014), Beast Mode (2015), and 56 Nights (2015). His next releases, DS2 (2015), What a Time to Be Alive (2015, in collaboration with Drake), Evol (2016), Future (2017) and Hndrxx (2017) all debuted at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200. The latter two made him the first artist since 2014 to debut two albums in consecutive weeks atop of that chart. Future has also released several singles certified gold or higher by the RIAA, including "Turn On the Lights", "Move That Dope", "Fuck Up Some Commas", "Where Ya At", "Jumpman", "Low Life" and "Mask Off".

<i>56 Nights</i> 2015 mixtape by Future

56 Nights is mixtape by DJ Esco. It was released on March 21, 2015. Along with Future's Monster and Beast Mode, it is considered one of "a trilogy of album-quality mixtapes" that Future released following Honest. The mixtape is entirely produced by members of 808 Mafia, particularly Southside and hosted by Future.

<i>DS2</i> (album) album by Future

DS2 is the third studio album by American rapper Future. It was released on July 17, 2015, by A1 Recordings, Epic Records and Freebandz. The album serves as the sequel to his breakout mixtape, Dirty Sprite (2011). It features production from Metro Boomin, Southside, and Zaytoven, among others. The album was supported by three singles: "Fuck Up Some Commas", "Where Ya At" and "Stick Talk".

<i>What a Time to Be Alive</i> 2015 mixtape by Drake and Future

What a Time to Be Alive is a collaborative commercial mixtape by Canadian rapper Drake and American rapper Future. It was released on September 20, 2015, by Young Money Entertainment, Cash Money Records, Republic Records, Epic Records, A1 Records and Freebandz. What a Time to Be Alive was supported by Drake and Future's previous collaboration on the single "Where Ya At". As friends, they originally planned to record a mixtape together earlier in the year; the project never fully materialized. However, during recording sessions for "Where Ya At", the duo began working on the project, beginning in July. The mixtape was extensively produced by Metro Boomin, as well as also being produced by Southside, Boi-1da and 40, among others. It was released on the iTunes Store and Apple Music, and debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200.

Life and career

1983–2010: Early life and career beginnings

Nayvadius DeMun Wilburn [7] was born on November 20, 1983 [7] [8] in Atlanta, Georgia. [9] [10] [11] He began using his stage name while performing as one of the members of the musical collective The Dungeon Family, where he was nicknamed "The Future". His first cousin, record producer, and Dungeon Family member Rico Wade, encouraged him to sharpen his writing skills and pursue a career as a rapper. He attended Columbia High School. Future voices his praise of Wade's musical influence and instruction, calling him the "mastermind" behind his sound. [11] He soon came under the wing of Atlanta's own Rocko who signed him to his label A-1 Recordings. Since then his work ethic has driven him to his success. [12] From 2010 to early 2011, Future released a series of mixtapes including 1000, Dirty Sprite and True Story. [12] [13] The latter included the single "Tony Montana", in reference to the Scarface film. [13] [14] During that time, Future was also partnering with rapper Gucci Mane on their collaborative album Free Bricks, and co-wrote YC's single "Racks". [15] [16] He gained popularity after his songs were played by DJ Esco at Magic City, [17] a strip club in Atlanta deemed "largely responsible for launching the careers of artists." [18]

Organized Noize is an American production team from Atlanta, Georgia composed of Rico Wade, Ray Murray and Sleepy Brown.

<i>Scarface</i> (1983 film) 1983 crime drama film directed by Brian De Palma

Scarface is a 1983 American crime film directed by Brian De Palma and written by Oliver Stone, a remake of the 1932 film of the same name. The film tells the story of Cuban refugee Tony Montana who arrives in 1980s Miami with nothing and rises to become a powerful drug kingpin. The cast also features Michelle Pfeiffer, Steven Bauer, Robert Loggia, F. Murray Abraham, and Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio.

Gucci Mane American rapper from Georgia

Radric Delantic Davis, known professionally as Gucci Mane, is an American rapper. He helped pioneer the hip-hop subgenre of trap music alongside fellow Atlanta-based rappers T.I. and Young Jeezy, particularly in the 2000s and 2010s. In 2005, Gucci Mane debuted with Trap House, followed by his second and third albums, Hard to Kill and Trap-A-Thon in 2006. His fourth album, Back to the Trap House, was released in 2007.

2011–2014: Pluto and Honest

Future signed a major label recording contract with Epic Records fellow American rapper Rocko's A1 Recordings, in September 2011, days before the release of his next mixtape, Streetz Calling. [19] The mixtape was described by XXL magazine as ranging from "simple and soundly executed boasts" to "futuristic drinking and drugging jams" to "tales of the grind". [16] A Pitchfork review remarked that on the mixtape Future comes "as close as anyone to perfecting this thread of ringtone pop, where singing and rapping are practically the same thing, and conversing 100% through Auto-Tune doesn't mean you still can't talk about how you used to sell drugs. It would almost feel antiquated if Future weren't amassing hits, or if he weren't bringing some subtle new dimensions to the micro-genre." [14]

A recording contract is a legal agreement between a record label and a recording artist, where the artist makes a record for the label to sell and promote. Artists under contract are normally only allowed to record for that label exclusively; guest appearances on other artists' records will carry a notice "By courtesy of ", and that label may receive a percentage of sales.

Rodney Ramone Hill, Jr., better known by his stage name Rocko, is an American rapper and actor.

<i>XXL</i> (magazine) American hip hop magazine

XXL is an American hip hop magazine, published by Townsquare Media, founded in 1997.

Future performing in 2014 Future Honest Tour @ Sound Academy Toronto July 11,2014.jpg
Future performing in 2014

Though Future had told MTV that Streetz Calling would be his final mixtape prior to the release of his debut studio album, another mixtape, Astronaut Status , was released in January 2012. In December 2011, Future was featured on the cover of Issue #77 of The FADER. [20] Before his album being released in April 2012. [21] [22] XXL's Troy Mathews wrote, "While Astronaut Status is up and down and never really hits the highs like 'Racks', 'Tony Montana', and 'Magic' that fans have come to expect from Future, it’s apparent that he’s poised to continue the buzz of 2011 humming right along into 2012." [23] Future was selected to the annual XXL Freshmen list in early 2012. [24] His debut album Pluto , originally planned for January, was eventually released on April 17. [25] [26] It included remixes of "Tony Montana" featuring Drake and "Magic" featuring T.I.. [27] According to Future, "'Magic' was the first record T.I. jumped on when he came outta jail. Like, he was out of jail a day and he jumped straight on the 'Magic' record without me even knowing about it." [27] The track became Future's first single to enter the Billboard Hot 100 chart. [28] Other collaborators on the album include Trae Tha Truth, R. Kelly and Snoop Dogg [29] On October 8, 2012, Pusha T released "Pain" featuring Future, the first single from his upcoming debut album.

MTV American pay television channel

MTV is an American pay television channel owned by Viacom Media Networks and headquartered in New York City. The channel was launched on August 1, 1981, and originally aired music videos as guided by television personalities known as "video jockeys" (VJs). At first, MTV's main target demographic was young adults, but today it is primarily teenagers, particularly high school and college students.

<i>Astronaut Status</i> 2012 mixtape by Future

Astronaut Status is the ninth mixtape by American rapper Future. It was released on January 12, 2012. The album features guest appearances from rappers Gucci Mane, Young Jeezy, Ludacris and Rocko. Future previously stated Streetz Calling would be his last mixtape, before his debut full-length album Pluto, but instead released Astronaut Status in 2012, making it his last official mixtape. "Itchin'" peaked at #2 on the Bubbling Under R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. Since the release of Astronaut Status, it has been downloaded over 250k times on DatPiff, certifying it platinum. Astronaut Status also charted at #50 on the Billboard Heatseekers Chart.

<i>Pluto</i> (Future album) 2012 studio album by Future

Pluto is the debut studio album by American rapper Future. It was released on April 13, 2012, by A1 Recordings, Epic Records and Freebandz. The album features guest appearances from Drake, R. Kelly, T.I., Trae tha Truth and Snoop Dogg, with the production, which was handled by Will-A-Fool, Sonny Digital and K.E. on the Track, among others.

It was announced that Future will be repackaging his debut album Pluto on November 27, 2012 under the name Pluto 3D featuring 3 new songs and 2 remix songs including the remix for "Same Damn Time" featuring Diddy and Ludacris, as well as his newest street single "Neva End (Remix)" featuring Kelly Rowland. [30] In 2012, Future wrote, produced and was featured on "Loveeeeeee Song" taken from Barbadian singer Rihanna's seventh studio album Unapologetic .

<i>Pluto 3D</i> 2012 studio album (reissue) by Future

Pluto 3D is the reissue of American recording artist Future's debut studio album Pluto (2012). It was released on November 27, 2012 by A1 Recordings, Freebandz Entertainment and Epic Records. Released seven months after its parent album. Pluto 3D features three newly recorded songs and two official remixes. During the following week of the re-release, Pluto rose to number 75 on the US Billboard 200, selling 11,000 copies.

Sean Combs American rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer, actor and entrepreneur from New York

Sean John Combs, also known by the stage names Puff Daddy, P. Diddy, Puffy or Diddy, is an American rapper, singer, record executive, actor, record producer, and entrepreneur. Combs was born in New York City but was raised in Mount Vernon, New York. He worked as a talent director at Uptown Records before founding his own record label, Bad Boy Entertainment, in 1993.

Ludacris American rapper, entrepreneur and actor from Georgia

Christopher Brian Bridges, known professionally as Ludacris, is an American rapper and actor. Ludacris is the founder of Disturbing tha Peace. Ludacris has won Screen Actors Guild, Critic's Choice, MTV, and 3 Grammy Awards. Along with fellow Atlanta-based rappers Big Boi and André 3000 of OutKast, Ludacris was one of the first and most influential "Dirty South" rappers to achieve mainstream success during the early 2000s. In 2014, Ludacris was featured in Forbes list titled "Hip-Hop Cash Kings", as he earned $8 million.

On January 15, 2013, Future released the compilation mixtape F.B.G.: The Movie which features the artists signed to his Freebandz label: Young Scooter, Slice9, Casino, Mexico Rann and Maceo. It was certified platinum for having over 250,000 downloads on popular mixtape site DatPiff. [31] Future said of his second studio album Future Hendrix it will be a more substantive musical affair than his debut album and features R&B music along with his usual "street bangers". The album was to be released in 2013. [32] The album features Kanye West, Rihanna, Ciara, Drake, Kelly Rowland, Jeremih, Diplo, and André 3000, among others. [33]

The album's lead single, "Karate Chop" featuring Casino, premiered on January 25, 2013, and was sent to urban radio on January 29, 2013. [34] The song is produced by Metro Boomin. The official remix, which features Lil Wayne, was sent radio and was released on iTunes on February 19, 2013. On August 7, 2013, Future changed the title of his second album from Future Hendrix to Honest and announced that it would be released on November 26, 2013. [35] It was later revealed that the album would be pushed back to April 22, 2014, as it was said that Future has tour dates with Drake on Would You Like A Tour?. [36] In December 2013, it was announced that Future would make a guest appearance on Kat Dahlia's upcoming debut, My Garden . [37] Future released DS2 on July 16, 2015.

2015–2016: DS2, What a Time to Be Alive and Evol

Future performing on the Summer Sixteen tour in 2016 Future Summer Sixteen Tour.jpg
Future performing on the Summer Sixteen tour in 2016

On September 20, 2015, Future released a collaborative mixtape with Canadian rapper Drake, titled What a Time to Be Alive . [38] [39] The album debuted at number one on the Billboard 200, Billboard R&B Charts, and Billboard Hot Rap Songs, marking the first time a rapper was able to score two number one albums in a year, in 11 years, since Jay Z back in 2004. The mixtape has sold over 334,000 copies in the U.S. [40] On January 17, 2016, Future released another mixtape, titled Purple Reign , with executive production from Metro Boomin and DJ Esco, as well as beat credits from Southside, Zaytoven and more. [41] On February 5, 2016, Future premiered his fourth studio album, EVOL , on DJ Khaled's debut episode of the Beats 1 radio show We The Best . [42] In 2016, Future became the fastest artist to chart three number-one albums on the Billboard 200 since Glee soundtrack albums in 2010. [43]

On June 29, 2016, he appeared in an issue of Rolling Stone . [44]

2017–2018: Future,Hndrxxand Wrld On Drugs

On Valentine's Day 2017, Future announced via Instagram that his self-titled fifth studio album would be released on February 17, 2017. [45] Exactly one week later, he would release his sixth studio album titled Hndrxx . Both albums went number one consecutively, which made Future the first artist to debut two albums at number one at the same time on the Billboard 200 and Canadian Albums Chart. He, along with Ed Sheeran, collaborated with pop musician Taylor Swift on the song "End Game" from her album Reputation . [46] The song peaked at number 18 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was Future's eighth top 20 hit.[ citation needed ]

On January 11, 2018, Future collaborated alongside Kendrick Lamar, James Blake and Jay Rock for the song, "King's Dead", from the soundtrack album of the Marvel Studios superhero film Black Panther and Jay Rock's third studio album Redemption . At the 61st Annual Grammy Awards, the song earned two Grammy nominations, for Best Rap Performance and Best Rap Song, marking Future's first career Grammy nominations. [47]

Future curated the soundtrack for the movie Superfly (2018 film) , which was released in June 2018. [48]

On October 19, 2018, Future released Wrld On Drugs, a collaborative mixtape with fellow American rapper Juice Wrld. [49] Wrld on Drugs debuted at number two on the US Billboard 200 behind A Star Is Born by Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, with 98,000 album-equivalent units, which included 8,000 pure album sales. [50] It became Future's tenth top-ten album in the United States, and Juice Wrld's second. [50]

2019: The Wizrd

On January 18, 2019, Future released his seventh studio album, Future Hndrxx Presents: The Wizrd. The album consists of 20 songs and was promoted by a film titled The Wizrd, released on January 11 on Apple Music. [51] The Wizrd received generally positive reviews from critics [52] and became Future's sixth US number-one album, debuting at number one on the US Billboard 200 with 125,000 album-equivalent units (including 15,000 pure album sales). [53] With the release of The Wizrd, several songs from the album charted on theBillboard Hot 100, leading to Future becoming the artist with the 10th most entries in Hot 100 history. [54]

At the 61st Annual Grammy Awards held on February 10, 2019, Future won his first Grammy Award for Best Rap Performance for his collaboration alongside Kendrick Lamar, James Blake and Jay Rock for the song, "King's Dead", from the soundtrack album of the Marvel Studios superhero film Black Panther. [55]

Musical style

Future makes prevalent use of Auto-Tune in his songs, both rapping and singing with the effect. Pitchfork Media wrote that Future "miraculously shows that it's still possible for Auto-Tune to be an interesting artistic tool", stating that he "finds a multitude of ways for the software to accentuate and color emotion". [56] The LA Times wrote that "Future’s highly processed vocals suggest a man driven to bleary desperation by drugs or love or technology", stating that his music "comes closest to conjuring the numbing overstimulation of our time". [57] GQ stated that he "has managed to reboot the tired auto-tune sound and mash it into something entirely new", writing that he "combines it with a bizarro croon to synthesize how he feels, then [...] stretches and deteriorates his words until they’re less like words, more like raw energy and reactive emotions". [58] Critic Simon Reynolds wrote that "he's reinvented blues for the 21st century." [59]

Rapper T-Pain, who also uses that audio processor, criticized Future's unconventional use of it in 2014. [60] In response, Future stated in an interview that "when I first used Auto-Tune, I never used it to sing. I wasn’t using it the way T-Pain was. I used it to rap because it makes my voice sound grittier. Now everybody wants to rap in Auto-Tune. Future’s not everybody." [61] Future's music has been characterized as trap music. [62]

Personal life

Wilburn currently has five children with five different women: Jessica Smith, Brittni Mealy, India J, singer Ciara, and Joie Chavis. [63] He was engaged to Ciara in October 2013. Their son, Future Zahir Wilburn, was born on May 19, 2014. [64] Ciara ended the engagement in August 2014 due to his infidelity. [65] His fifth child, Hendrix, was born on Christmas in 2018. [66]

As of 2016, Wilburn is being sued by both Jessica Smith and Ciara. Smith is suing him for failing to pay child support, and stated that their son "suffers from emotional and behavioral issues stemming from Future's neglect as a father". [67] Ciara is suing him for defamation, slander, and libel. [68] In October 2016, a judge said that Future's string of tweets bashing Ciara did not relate to the $15 million she was asking for. [69]

Prior to his music career in 2004, Wilburn was arrested for theft by receiving stolen property and contempt of court. [70]


Studio albums

Collaborative mixtapes



Awards and nominations

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