2Chainz is a product of the competitive Atlanta scene that spawned his first group, the duo Playaz Circle (in which he was known as Tity Boi). They made their mark back in ’07 with the rap-R&B-pop crossover hit “Duffle Bag Boy” featuring Lil’ Wayne on the hook, on the DTP (Disturbing Tha Peace)/Def Jam label. College Park native Tity Boi was a lifelong friend of Chris Bridges, aka DTP CEO/Def Jam recording artist Ludacris. But the time would come when 2Chainz would fly from the DTP nest to make it on his own.
His first step toward independence was the 2007 mixtape, Me Against The World. Proving that he could stand on his own, he vowed to “turn up” in 2009. He did exactly that with the double-disc mixtape All Ice On Me, followed by his two-part Trapavelli series. Both had cameos from the likes of fellow underground kings Bun B and Gucci Mane, as well as his 2009 street hit “Stupid” and the surprise 2010 radio smash “Boo.”
Proving that he could write street anthems with crossover appeal, he capitalized on his notoriety with the back-to-back mixtape releases of Codeine Withdrawal in 2010, and Codeine Cowboy in 2011. (The graphic 25-minute Codeine Cowboy documentary film has logged over 276,000 YouTube views to date). By now, the 2Chainz buzz had reached a fever pitch with the likes of Busta Rhymes, Young Jeezy and Pusha T jumping at the chance to join what he likes to call his “campaign.”
“It’s The Real University, Two Gun Gang, Street Executives,” 2Chainz recently told XXL. “It’s not DTP no more. I’m actually behind [Ludacris], he’s still my homie. I just took another route as far as running my own company and bossing up. But on the other hand, I’m still working with him. He has an album coming out this year, as well. Matter of fact, we are label mates, now, which is crazy. So, yeah, that’ll be cool. I’m looking forward to that.”