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Waka Flocka Flame is a 35 years old American Rapper who currently has a net worth of $7 million. His career has been diverse with many hit singles and albums. He also has received many nominations like the BET Award for Best Collaboration (2011) Much Music Video Award for Best EDM/Dance Video (2015), BET Hip Hop Award for Best New Hip Hop Artist (2010), and the award BET Hip Hop Award for Best Club Banger. Other mentionable singles of his are “Hard in da Paint” and “No Hands”. Waka Flocka Flame is not a singer who rose to fame overnight. His first album was a medium success. However, his success was built up over the years. His known sources of income include endorsement deals, screen appearances, and album sales.
In March 2014, he was wed to Tammy Rivera, an American television personality, singer, fashion designer, and businesswoman. The couple has a 5-year-old daughter from Tammy Rivera’s previous marriage. Waka Flocka Flame himself has two children from his previous relationships.
Life and Career
Juaquin James Malphurs was born in 1986 in South Jamaica In New York. His mother, Debra Antey, is Gucci Mane’s former manager and the CEO of So Icey/Mazey Entertainment. He attended business school at South River High School, in Riverdale, Georgia for one year almost before he changed schools to attend Hephzibah School before finally dropping out three years later.
He came into fame with his 2009 single, “O Let’s Do it” which ranked 62nd in the US Billboard Hot 100. His debut album, Locatelli debuted in 2010, ranking sixth on the US Billboard 200. The album of Flockaveli saw his entry into the 1017 Brick squad- Gucci Mane’s squad.
Flocka’s career has been very diverse and extensive and he has collaborated with Timberland and Wyclef Jean for his second album, Flocakveli 2. He has also previously collaborated with big artists such as Nicki Minaj, Drake, Ludacris, and Meek Mill on his first album. In April 2015, Flocka interviewed with Rolling Stone and pretended to run for president and it garnered a lot of attention from mainstream social media channels like CNN, Washington Post, etc.
The first tragedy that changed the course of his life happened when he was 14 when one of his older brothers got killed in a car accident. That was the time when he started to get into music and till then, had never thought of the music industry as a career option. In 2013, the tragic death of his brother, Kayo Redd and is when he turned his lifestyle around, detoxing for seven days and becoming 85% vegan. In 2010, Flocka was also shot twice during a robbery.
In October 2020, he received an honorary doctorate in philanthropy and humanitarianism from the Bible Institute of American Theological Seminary for his charity work and health advocacy. According to Waka Plock Flame, his motto in life is to follow the three simple rules as given below:
- Keep Hustling
- Getting through the dark steps step by step
- Family is his Number One
Origin of the Stage Name and the Stage Persona
His nickname, Waka Flocka Flame has two origins. The name “Waka” was given to him by his cousin who couldn’t pronounce his original name and called him by the name of a character in the Muppet show. The second part of his name, “Flocka Flame” was given to him by Gucci Mane when he was but 19.
Waka has often stated that he did not get into the music business to be a lyrical genius and has said that his lyrics come from the heart, not the head. He also advocated against the use of fur and did a photoshoot for PETA to advocate for animal rights and he has also made some television appearances.
Waka has also been in trouble with the law a few times. In January 2011, Flocka turned himself into the Atlanta authorities and was arrested for the possession of drugs like marijuana, hydrocodone, possession of a loaded firearm, and violation of probation for driving with a suspended license but was released soon after on bail. In 2014, he was also arrested at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport for having a loaded gun in his luggage but was released soon after.
Waka Flocka Flame was good friends with Gucci Mane and there are many instances where they collaborated with each other and despite the animosity that surfaced after Mane fired his mother as his manager and the lawsuit scuffle, Mane attested that there was no animosity between them and was seen at Flockaveli’s listening party. This statement is however refuted by Waka Flocka Flame’s diss track in 2017.
In 2013 Waka was dropped from the 1017 Brick Squad Records, announced by Gucci mane and this led to open war on Twitter and Waka as a diss track titled “Ice Cream” regarding Gucci Mane. Later that same year Gucci filed a lawsuit against Waka and his mother OJ Da Juiceman, rapper Kia Stone, and producer Zaytoven, accusing them of fraud, racketeering, and breach of contract. He also accused them of inflating the label expenditures and withholding royalties. He directed accused Aka Flocka Flame’s mother of taking over the 1017 Brick Squad without legal authority.
In 2014, the two seemed to have resolved their differences on Twitter but, in 2017, Waka denied any speculation on the reinstitution of the Brick squad and released another diss track aimed at Gucci Mane titled “Was My Dawg.”
The Presidential Campaign
In 2015, Waka collaborated with Rolling Stone where he was running for president despite being 5 years too young. His premise was the legalization of marijuana, raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour, better trade opportunities for children going to school, and a few other ridiculous points like banning people with the shoe size 13. This was done as a joke but it created quite a stir in general with major news channels picking up on it.