T-Pain

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T-Pain
T-Pain 2011.jpg
T-Pain at the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show in Paradise, Nevada, in January 2011.
Background information
Birth name Faheem Rasheed Najm
Born (1985-09-30) September 30, 1985 (age 29)
Tallahassee, Florida, U.S.
Genres Hip hop, R&B
Occupations Singer-songwriter, rapper, record producer, actor
Instruments Vocals, keyboard, auto-tune, GarageBand, Logic Pro[1]
Years active 2004–present
Labels Nappy Boy (CEO, 2005-present)
Konvict (2003-present)
RCA (2011-present)
Jive (former)
Associated acts Akon, Chris Brown, DJ Khaled, Lil Wayne, Rick Ross, Tay Dizm, Young Cash
Website www.t-pain.net

Faheem Rasheed Najm (born September 30, 1985), better known by his stage name T-Pain, is an American singer-songwriter, rapper, record producer, and actor. His debut album, Rappa Ternt Sanga, was released in 2005. In 2007, T-Pain released his second studio album Epiphany, which reached number one on the Billboard 200. His third studio album, Thr33 Ringz, was released in 2008. T-Pain has earned two Grammy Awards alongside artists Kanye West and Jamie Foxx.

T-Pain is the founder of the record label Nappy Boy Entertainment, established in 2005. Throughout his career as a singer, T-Pain is known for using and popularizing the Auto-Tune pitch correction effect. From 2006 to 2010, T-Pain was featured on more than 50 chart topping singles, his most successful feature to date was in Flo Rida's debut single "Low" which has since been certified 6x Platinum.

Early life

Najm was born in Tallahassee, Florida on September 30, 1985, where he also grew up.[2] His stage name is short for "Tallahassee Pain" and was chosen because of the hardships he experienced while living there. Najm was brought up in a Muslim household, but has expressed his disinterest in the concept of religion.[3][4] At just three years old he got his first taste of the music business. A friend of the family, gospel jazz artist/producer Ben Tankard allowed him to hang out and "twist the knobs" at his recording studio. At age ten, Najm turned his bedroom into a music studio, using a keyboard, a beat machine and a four-track recorder.[5][6]

Career

2004–2006: Early career and Rappa Ternt Sanga

T-Pain joined the rap group Nappy Headz in 2004 and later recorded "I'm Fucked Up", a cover version of Akon's single "Locked Up". Recording artist Akon heard the song and immediately signed T-Pain to Konvict Muzik, his label. After being discovered, T-Pain began singing instead of rapping. T-Pain subsequently recorded and released his debut album, Rappa Ternt Sanga, on December 6, 2005.[2] The album reached number thirty-three on the Billboard 200, and has since been certified Gold by the RIAA, for reaching sales of 500,000 units.

The album was preceded by the lead single, "I'm Sprung", which was released in August 2005 and reached number eight on the Billboard Hot 100 and number nine on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. The second single, "I'm N Luv (Wit a Stripper)", featuring Mike Jones, was released in December 2005 and reached number five on the Hot 100 and number ten on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. The third and final single from the album, "Studio Luv", was released in October 2006 but failed to chart.

2007–2008: Epiphany

T-Pain performing at the 2007 Hot 97 Summer Jam concert.

In mid-2006, T-Pain began work on his second album, now with the Zomba Label Group as well as Konvict Muzik and Jive Records. The album, titled Epiphany, was released on June 5, 2007. The album sold 171,000 records in its first week, reaching number one on the Billboard 200.[7] The record has since sold 819,000 records in the United States.[8]

The album was preceded by the lead single "Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin')" featuring Yung Joc in February 2007. The single reached number one on both the Hot 100 and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, becoming his first single to top charts. The album's second single, "Bartender", featuring Akon was released in June 2007 and reached number five on the Hot 100 and number nine on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. The third and final single from the album, "Church", was released in October 2007 but failed to chart in the United States.

Speaking in May 2007 to noted UK R&B writer Pete Lewis, of the award-winning Blues & Soul about his reason for naming his second album 'Epiphany', T-Pain stated: "One of the two dictionary meanings of epiphany is 'a sudden moment of insight or revelation'. And to me the title 'Epiphany' signifies the moment I realized that, to make the best music I can, I needed to just go in the studio and be myself, and not concentrate so hard on following other people's formulas."[9]

While promoting his second album, T-Pain made guest appearances on multiple songs by other artists. T-Pain was featured on "I'm a Flirt" (remix) by R. Kelly with T.I., "Outta My System" by Bow Wow, "Baby Don't Go" by Fabolous, "I'm So Hood" by DJ Khaled with many other rappers, "Shawty" by Plies, "Kiss Kiss" by Chris Brown, "Low" by Flo Rida, and "Good Life" by Kanye West.[10] In two weeks in late 2007, T-Pain was featured on four top ten singles on the Billboard Hot 100 chart[11]

"Good Life" with Kanye West later won the BET Award for Best Collaboration and was nominated in several other categories.[12][13] In 2008, the single won a Grammy Award for Best Rap Song.[14]

2007–2009: Thr33 Ringz

In 2007, T-Pain began work on his third album with Rocco Valdes, Akon and Lil Wayne. The album was also his first under his Nappy Boy Entertainment.

T-Pain's third studio album, Thr33 Ringz, was released on November 11, 2008.[15] The album sold 168,000 records in its first week, reaching number four on the Billboard 200. A mixtape, Pr33 Ringz, was released in early 2008 before the album.

The album was preceded by three singles. Its lead single, "Can't Believe It", featuring Lil Wayne, was released in July 2008. The single reached number seven on the Hot 100 and number two on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. The album's second single, "Chopped 'N' Skrewed", featuring Ludacris, was released in September 2008. The single reached number twenty-seven on the Hot 100 and number three on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. The third and final single from the album, "Freeze", featuring Chris Brown, was released in October 2008 and reached number thirty-eight on the Hot 100 and number thirty-nine on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. Guest appearances on Thr33 Ringz included T.I., Lil Wayne, Ludacris, DJ Khaled, Ciara, Chris Brown and Kanye West among others.[16] Pr33 Ringz was the introduction mixtape for the album.

T-Pain at General Motors Place concert in Vancouver, British Columbia in January 2009.

In 2008, T-Pain continued to appear on numerous rap singles, such as "She Got It" by 2 Pistols, "Go Girl" by Ciara, "The Boss" by Rick Ross, "Cash Flow" by Ace Hood, "Shawty Get Loose" by Lil Mama, "One More Drink" by Ludacris, and "Go Hard" by DJ Khaled with Kanye West. T-Pain and Ludacris collaborated to perform "Chopped 'N' Skrewed" and "One More Drink" on American late-night television programs Jimmy Kimmel Live! on ABC in November 2008 and on NBC's Saturday Night Live in the same month. T-Pain appeared again on SNL in February 2009 (on the episode hosted by Bradley Cooper with musical guest TV on the Radio) in the SNL Digital Short. T-Pain also supported the album in 2009 with his Thr33 Ringz Tour, which included sold out shows across North America. T-Pain and rapper Lil Wayne formed the duo T-Wayne in 2008.[17] The duo released a self-titled mixtape in late 2008; it charted on the Billboard 200 in January 2009.[18] Their debut album was going to be released in 2009, but never was.[19]

2009–2012: RevolveR

In May 2009, T-Pain made an appearance on a live-action episode of Aqua Teen Hunger Force as Frylock, where he made his debut as an actor.[20] He collaborated with country-pop singer Taylor Swift for the CMT Music Awards, and performed "Thug Story", a parody of Swift's hit single "Love Story".[21] In an interview with MTV, T-Pain announced that he would release his fourth studio album in November 2009 and that its title was UBER.[22] He stated that although he originally wanted to release the album in the summer of 2010, his label had pushed the release forward. Regardless of these announcements, the album wasn't released in 2009. An iPhone application called "I Am T-Pain" features an auto tuner, allowing fans to record and modify their own voice to accompany an instrumental collection of T-Pain's music. It was released in September 2009.[23] In July 2009, T-Pain endorsed the 2009 T-Pain Killa Cam-Pain, a grassroots effort to help him become elected as president of Florida State University.[24]

In November 2009, T-Pain released the first single from his fourth studio album, "Take Your Shirt Off".[25] The single only managed to reach number eighty on the Hot 100, and was later dubbed a promotional single. Later, in February 2010, he released the official lead single from his fourth studio album, "Reverse Cowgirl", featuring Young Jeezy.[26] He later release an updated version of the song excluding Young Jeezy's verse and adding a new bridge. The single reached number seventy-five on the Hot 100 and number sixty-four on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, becoming a mild hit. The single has since been dubbed a promotional single. T-Pain was later featured on the "We Are the World 25 for Haiti" single in February 2010, which reached number two on the Hot 100. In the fall of 2009, T-Pain began work with Cartoon Network's Adult Swim to produce and star in a television animated musical special based on Freaknik. Freaknik: The Musical aired on March 7, 2010.[27]

In June 2010, T-Pain confirmed that his fourth studio album RevolveR has been completed and mastered, but that it will not be released until album sales increase.[28] He elaborated upon this in August 2010, stating that the album probably wouldn't be released until 2011. T-Pain's first feature film, Lottery Ticket, was released on August 20, 2010. In October 2010, T-Pain release his third promotional single, Rap Song. The song charted poorly, peaking at 89 on the Hot 100.

T-Pain released a Nappy Boy mixtape called T-Pain Presents: Nappy Boy All Stars Vol.1 which contained Nappy Boy remixes to "Every Girl", "All The Way Turnt Up" and "Forever". Later he announced a mixtape for his album rEVOLVEr called prEVOLVEr. the mixtape released three songs, the first being "Hoes & Ladies" which featured Lil Wayne and Field Mob's Smoke. The other two songs released were contest songs. The contest songs where meant for anyone willing to get on the track and who ever lays down the best verse will feature on the track and the actual album. The first contest song was called "Motivated" which was a rap song and the second song was an R&B song for the singer, called "Merry Christmas." B. Martin of Albany, NY won the competition and will be featured on the mixtape. "T-Mixes" were made, which are T-Pain's remixes to some 2010 hit songs. The released remixes were "No Hands", "Black & Yellow", "Loving You No More", "Make It Rain" and "Like a G6". Two out of the five T-Mixes were made into the official remixes. They were "Black & Yellow" by Wiz Khalifa and featured him with Snoop Dogg & Juicy J. The other T-Mix that was made into an official remix was "Loving You No More" by Dirty Money, which originally featured Drake, but the remix features T-Pain and rapper Gucci Mane.

T-Pain was featured on the hit single "All I Do Is Win" by DJ Khaled, along with the remix. He featured on Wisin & Yandel's single "Imaginate" & Bun B's single "Trillionaire." In the last two quarters of 2010, he was featured on hit singles like Pitbull's "Hey Baby (Drop It To The Floor)" and Nelly's "Move That Body." He was also featured on another single by Wisin & Yandel along with rapper 50 Cent called "No Dejemos Que Se Apague." The last two single's T-Pain were featured on in 2010 were the official Remixes to Black & Yellow by rapper Wiz Khalifa & Loving You No More.

T-Pain was featured on the first single by DJ Khaled called "Welcome To My Hood" off his new album We the Best Forever. The song featured him along with Rick Ross, Plies, & Lil Wayne. He is also expected to be featured on albums such as Drake's Take Care, Lil Wayne's Tha Carter IV, Tech N9ne's All 6s and 7s, and many more. A new toy called "iAm T-Pain Microphone" will make its way to stores everywhere in 2011, at the price of $39.99.[citation needed] T-Pain is featured on a single called Electroman which is by house artist Benny Benassi. In January, JRandall released a single, "Can't Sleep", featuring T-Pain. On March 22, 2011 the next single from RevolveR will be released titled "Best Love Song" and features American singer Chris Brown.[29] On his Twitter he stated that he would release his prEVOLVEr mixtape when he gets 500,000 followers and release his album rEVOLVEr when he gets 1,000,000 followers.[30] Also in 2011, he gave another cameo to an Adult Swim show; this time, he appeared on the sixth-season premiere of Squidbillies, performing a version of the theme song in addition to the original song "(I Like) Drivin' In My Truck" with Unknown Hinson.

On October 7, RCA Music Group announced it was disbanding Jive Records along with Arista Records and J Records. With the shutdown, T-Pain (and all other artists previously signed to these three labels) will release his future material (including RevolveЯ) on the RCA Records brand.[31][32]

The album rEVOLVEr was eventually released in December 2011, alongside the transatlantic Top 10 single '5 O'Clock', which samples U.K. songstress Lily Allen and features Wiz Khalifa.[33]

2013–present: Stoicville: The Phoenix

On April 1, 2013 after the announcement of T-Pain cutting off his signature dreads, he announced the title of his fifth studio album entitled Stoicville: The Phoenix stating, "To me, a Phoenix represents new beginnings. A new era, a new life, I'm rising from the ashes."[34] The first single from Stoicville, "Up Down (Do This All Day)", produced by DJ Mustard and featuring B.o.B was officially released on August 13, 2013.[35] Nearly a year later on July 21, 2014, the second single from the album "Drankin Patna" was officially released.[36]

Other ventures

"I Am T-Pain" phone app

On September 24, 2009 T-Pain joined with iPhone app creator, Smule, to create a new app entitled "I Am T-Pain" to allow people to use his style of Auto-Tune in karaoke; it was released the following day.[37]

Acting career

In late 2009, T-Pain came up with a concept to create an animated television special entitled Freaknik: The Musical. After finally creating it T-Pain submitted it to Cartoon Network's Adult Swim; it was accepted, and it premiered on March 7, 2010. It featured many guest celebrities such as Lil Wayne, Young Ca$h, Snoop Dogg, Sophia Fresh, Rick Ross, Andy Samberg and Charlie Murphy.[38] T-Pain made his official acting debut in the comedy film "Lottery Ticket" as a liquor store clerk .[39]

Musical style

He has called his style of music "Hard & B".[40] T-Pain uses Auto-Tune, a pitch-correcting audio processor, for his vocals. Music critic Andy Kellman compared T-Pain's singing style to that of Cher in her 1998 hit "Believe", in which Cher used voice enhancements.[41] In response to Jay-Z's single "D.O.A. (Death of Auto-Tune)", T-Pain stated that he would still use the method.[22] T-Pain's use of Auto-Tune has been cited as an influence on other urban artists' works, including Snoop Dogg's single "Sexual Eruption",[42] Lil Wayne's single "Lollipop",[43] and Kanye West's album 808s & Heartbreak.[44] In November 2008, T-Pain demanded credit from other artists who used Auto-Tune.[45]

T-Pain also uses GarageBand and Logic Pro to produce his own beats.[1]

Personal life

T-Pain has been married to Amber Najm since 2003. They have three children: daughter Lyriq and sons Muziq and Kaydnz Kodah (born May 2009).[46][47]

On March 27, 2009, T-Pain was involved in a golf cart accident, the same day he was due for a music video shoot for Lil' Kim's Download song. He suffered cuts, bruises, and four missing teeth and had emergency dental work done. He returned to performing two days later.[48]

On April 1, 2013, T-Pain revealed that he had cut off his iconic dreads, stating "We must all learn to adjust with our surroundings. Those who get stuck doing the same things for too long are bound to get left behind the strong who press on & reinvent themselves. Also good news hair grows back."[49]

Legal issues

Mug shot of T-Pain taken in November 2007.

On April 28, 2007, T-Pain refused to cut his set short at Radio One's Spring Fest Concert in Miami, which caused police presence to escalate backstage. He became agitated after concert officials stopped his performance of "Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin')". Police chased him and his entourage out of the premises and detained them.[50] After a June 2007 concert of T-Pain's, Tallahassee police issued a warrant for his arrest over a suspended driver's license. He subsequently turned himself into the Leon County Jail on November 2, 2007. He was held without bail but was released 3 hours later.[51]

Discography

Main article: T-Pain discography

Filmography

Film

Television

Awards and nominations

  • American Music Awards
    • 2007, Favorite Male Artist [Nominated].[52]
  • BET Awards
    • 2009, Best Male R&B Artist (Nominated)
    • 2009, Best Collaboration ("Blame It") with Jamie Foxx (Won)
    • 2009, Viewer's Choice ("Can't Believe It") with Lil Wayne (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best Collaboration ("Kiss Kiss") with Chris Brown (Nominated)[13]
    • 2008, Best Collaboration ("Low") with Flo Rida (Nominated)[13]
    • 2008, Viewer's Choice ("Kiss Kiss") with Chris Brown (Nominated)[13]
    • 2008, Best Collaboration ("Good Life") with Kanye West (Won)[12]
    • 2008, Video of the Year ("Good Life") with Kanye West (Nominated)[13]
  • BET Hip Hop Awards[citation needed]
    • 2009. Producer of the Year (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best Ringtone ("Low") with Flo Rida (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best Hip-Hop Video ("Good Life") with Kanye West (Won)
    • 2008, Best Hip-Hop Collabo ("Low") with Flo Rida (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best Hip-Hop Collabo ("Good Life") with Kanye West (Nominated)
    • 2008, Track of the Year ("Good Life") with Kanye West (Nominated)
  • BMI Urban Awards[citation needed]
  • Grammy Awards
    • 2010, Best Rap/Sung Collaboration ("I'm on a Boat") with The Lonely Island [Nominated]
    • 2010, Best R&B Performance by a Duo or a Group ("Blame It") with Jamie Foxx [Won]
    • 2010, Best R&B Song ("Blame It") with Jamie Foxx [Nominated]
    • 2010, Best Contemporary Album Thr33 Ringz [Nominated]
    • 2009, Best Rap/Sung Collaboration ("Got Money") with Lil Wayne (Nominated)
    • 2009, Best Rap/Sung Collaboration ("Low") with Flo Rida (Nominated)
    • 2009, Best Rap Song ("Low") with Flo Rida (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group ("Bartender") with Akon (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best Rap/Sung Rap Song ("Good Life") With Kanye West (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best Rap/Sung Collaboration ("Kiss Kiss") with Chris Brown (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best Rap Song ("Good Life") with Kanye West (Won)[14]
  • Nickelodeon Kids Choice Awards
    • 2009, Favorite Male Singer (Nominated)
  • Ozone Music Awards[citation needed]
    • 2008, TJ's DJ's Hustler of the Year (Nominated)
    • 2008, Club Banger of the Year ("I'm So Hood") with DJ Khaled, Trick Daddy, Rick Ross, & Plies (Nominated)
    • 2008, Club Banger of the Year ("Low") with Flo Rida (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best Rap/R&B Collaboration ("She Got It") with 2 Pistols & Tay Dizm (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best R&B Artist (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best TJ's DJ's Tastemaker Award (Won)
    • 2007, Best Male R&B Artist (Won)
    • 2007, Best Rap/R&B Collaboration ("Shawty") with Plies (Won)
    • 2007: Best Rap/R&B Collaboration ("Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin')") with Yung Joc (Nominated)
    • 2006, Best Rap/R&B Collaboration ("I'm N Luv (Wit a Stripper) (Remix)" with Twista, Pimp C, Paul Wall, R. Kelly, MJG, and Too Short) (Won)
  • MTV Video Music Award
    • 2008, Best Hip-Hop Video ("Low") with Flo Rida (Nominated)
    • 2008, Best Male Video ("Low") with Flo Rida (Nominated)
    • 2007, Monster Single of the Year ("Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin)"), featuring Yung Joc (Nominated)
  • People's Choice Awards
    • 2008, Favorite Hip-Hop Song, "Low" with Flo Rida [Won]
    • 2008, Favorite Hip-Hop Song, "Good Life" with Kanye West [Nominated]
  • Teen Choice Awards
    • 2008, Choice Hook-Up: Flo Rida Featuring T-Pain, "Low" (Nominated)
    • 2008, Choice Music: R&B Artist – T-Pain (Nominated)
    • 2008, Choice Music: Rap/Hip-Hop Track – Lil Mama featuring Chris Brown and T-Pain, "Shawty Get Loose" (Won)
  • Vibe Awards
    • 2007, Best R&B Artist (Nominated)
    • 2007, Best Collaboration ("Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin)") with Yung Joc (Nominated)
    • 2007, Song of the Year ("Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin)") with Yung Joc (Won)

References

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  3. ^ Dunham, Darnella (2012-04-12). "T-Pain On Being A Muslim Married To A Christian [EXCLUSIVE VIDEO]". Elev8. Retrieved 2012-07-13. 
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  18. ^ Kaufman, Gil (2009-01-14). "Taylor Swift Tops Billboard Chart For Fifth Week In A Row". MTV News. Retrieved 2009-03-28. 
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  29. ^ "Radio Industry News, Music Industry Updates, Arbitron Ratings, Music News and more!". FMQB. Retrieved 2011-11-01. 
  30. ^ "TwitLonger — When you talk too much for Twitter". Twitlonger.com. 2011-03-15. Retrieved 2011-11-01. 
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  33. ^ T-Pain interview by Pete Lewis, 'Blues & Soul' January 2010
  34. ^ http://www.sohh.com/2013/04/t-pain_credits_ditching_dreads_as_sign_o.html
  35. ^ https://soundcloud.com/t-pain/t-pain-up-down-do-this-all-day
  36. ^ https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/drankin-patna-single/id902067280
  37. ^ http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/267502/t-pain-talks-iphone-auto-tune-app
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  39. ^ http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/life/movies/news/2010-08-18-tpain18_ST_N.htm?csp=34</ref

    Clothing line

    T-Pain announced that he's currently making his own clothing line, which is to be named, "Breathe".

  40. ^ Reid, Shaheem (2005-12-13). "T-Pain's Akon-Approved 'Hard R&B' Calms His Fear Of Sounding Soft". MTV News. Retrieved 2009-09-26. 
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  49. ^ http://www.sohh.com/2013/04/t-pain_loses_his_hair_cuts_off_iconic_dr.html
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External links