The iconic VOLAR Hong Kong anniversary is the best time of the year. This year – we give you Soulja Boy Tell Em. Descend the 18 steps to celebrate in our epic manner. SOULJA BOY
Before he reached the age of 18, Soulja Boy Tell Em (born DeAndre Way; originally Soulja Boy until copyright issues interfered) was already an ambitious artist and a seasoned businessman wielding all the hitmaking requirements: producer, live entertainer, and an ability to write catchy hooks. Born in 1990 in Chicago, Illinois, Way moved from the Windy City down to Atlanta when he was six years old, but then went to live with his father in Batesville, Mississippi at age 14. In Mississippi, the young entertainer found all the various connections to pursue a musical career seriously, including the aid of his father, who provided a recording studio. After successfully promoting his music online in 2004 and establishing his Stacks on Deck Entertainment label, he moved back to Atlanta to pursue industry leads and to get his feet wet doing live performances. Shortly thereafter, he was discovered by Atlanta producer Mr. Collipark (Ying Yang Twins, Bubba Sparxxx, Young Jeezy), who helped launch Soulja Boy Tell Em from a local sensation to a national mover and shaker -- and it was all largely due to the Internet. His MySpace page broke the site's records and generated millions of views.
Affiliated with Interscope via Collipark's Collipark Music imprint, Soulja Boy Tell Em gradually rose to number one on the pop charts with his snap-dance hit single "Crank Dat (Soulja Boy)" in 2007. By the end of the year the track landed on his debut album, Souljaboytellem.com.iSouljaboytellem followed in 2008, with The DeAndre Way arriving two years later. In 2011 he went independent with the mixtape Smooky, while 2012 saw him partner with Young L for the mixtape Mario & Domo vs. the World. His 2013 mixtape Foreign launched rumors that he was signed to the Cash Money label, but 2015's Swag the Mixtape announced he was instead launching his own label, Stacks on Deck.