B.o.B an American hip-hop artist and record producer who took a different musical direction than the expected Dirty South sound.
Bobby Ray Simmons was born in North Carolina on November 15, 1988. He learned how to play the trumpet and formed a producing partnership at age 15. Deciding to launch a solo career, Simmons released his first single and tribute to marijuana as Cloud 9.
In 2006, he had a successful gig at T.I.’s club Crucial which soon led to a record deal with Atlantic’s subsidiary Rebel Rock. The next year, B.o.B released the official single Haterz Everywhere. The track reached number 5 on Billboard’s Bubbling Under R&B/Hip-Hop chart. Grip Your Body did well too, featured by the talented Amy Winehouse.
In 2010, B.o.B topped the charts with Nothin’ on You and Airplanes featured by Paramore’s Hayley Williams. His debut album was released later that year as The Adventures of Bobby Ray. The record received a gold certification for good sales. In 2011, B.o.B was featured on Jessie J’s hit Price Tag. His second album was revealed as Strange Clouds in 2012, with appearances from Lil Wayne, Taylor Swift, and Nicki Minaj. The following year Underground Luxury was issued and featured names like Chris Brown, 2 Chainz, and Juicy J.
Starting 2015, he released a 70s rock-funk inspired record, called Psycadelik Thoughtz. The rest of 2015 and 2016 was filled with several mixtapes. The mixtapes, WATER, FIRE, EARTH and AIR were compiled into an album entitled Elements, revealed in early 2017.
Photo credit: Billboard