The Break Presents: YBN Nahmir
With the power of the internet, success can come at the blink of an eye.That is exactly what happened to YBN Nahmir. The 17-year-old Birmingham, Ala., native went from bubbling SoundCloud rapper to the next big thing after he shared the video for “Rubbin' Off the Paint,” his breakout hit, via Worldstar in September. The video has amassed over 48 million YouTube views and is currently on the Billboard Hot 100 chart at No. 80. The record has spawned several remixes by Vince Staples and Madeintyo plus a co-sign from Chris Brown.
Despite growing up in the south, YBN Nahmir listened to the Bay Area slappers when he was little, bumping E-40 and Mozzy, among others. Nahmir, born Nick Simmons, started a rock band when he was younger and occasionally hung out on XBOX Live with his friends. He turned to rap when he figured out he can record using rock equipment and also freestyled with friends during XBOX parties. The hobby soon became serious, and with the formation of his crew, YBN (Young Boss Niggas), Nahmir began dropping music on YouTube and started to get noticed. But his life changed when “Rubbin' Off the Paint" blew up.
YBN Nahmir is now on his way to stardom, even though he's currently fighting for the rights of his breakout hit record (he claims his old manager sold it to someone else without his knowledge). With new freestyles over Tay-K's "The Race" and Lil Pump's "Gucci Gang" instrumentals gaining hits, plus a new project dropping at the top of 2018, things are looking bright.
"Right now, I'm just dropping singles and music videos and I'm going to drop a tape like January or February," he tells XXL over the phone. "I've been working with Lul G of SOBxRBE and Rich The Kid, PnB Rock, and a few other people, Mozzy, Lil Mouse."
Get to know more about the youngster in The Break.
Name: YBN Nahmir
Hometown: Birmingham, Ala.
I grew up listening to: "I was listening to all type of people but I was really influenced by the Bay Area [music], E-40, Snoop Dogg, then I started listening to Mozzy, SOB x RBE, all those types of people. I have a bunch of friends from Oakland and Vallejo that's in Alabama right now, those were the only people I was really hanging around. They were always listening to those type of niggas and I did too.
"I started making music when I was like 14. I had a little rock band and I was just recording some shit, fucking around. Everybody had rock bands. But after that I found out I could record with the rock band's mic. I put a napkin over it to try and make it pop better. I always took rapping seriously but it wasn't like how serious it is now. It was more of a hobby but now I just started taking it really seriously because rapping is changing my life. It changed my life already.
"My first song that I did was with Almighty Jay, he's YBN too. It was called 'Hood Mentality.' That was the first song I put on YouTube. I was like 15 years old. It didn't go too crazy but for someone so young it went crazy at the time.
"YBN, that's my shit right there. Me and my nigga Glizzy run that. It's a bunch of people in it but we started it from the ground up. It's young boss niggas, that's the mindset we have too. Even when we weren't bosses we always had to be a boss in our heads to become one."
My style’s been compared to: "It's different, I don't sound like anyone. All my shit sound different, I got my own type of sound. Nobody sounds like me either."
Most people don’t know: "When I was younger, I used to play baseball. I used to be that nigga in baseball. I used to play second base, leftfield and centerfield."
My standout moment to date: "'Rubbin' Off the Paint,' I knew the song was hard, everyone was telling me. I think it was just because I was talking shit the whole time. I kept my flow steady and I always hit niggas with a different flow. I kept them in tune with the music. I went crazy the whole song. Then when we made the video and people seen how I look and saw my face, they were like, 'This little nigga, he really living like that.' That was a big impact."
My goal in hip-hop is: "I'm really the only nigga out of Birmingham doing this shit right now. I want to be that voice because I want to put my city on the map. In my city, I want to open the doors. I want to do bigger things, I want everybody to eat. I'm the voice of the city right now, you feel me?"
I’m going to be the next: "I want to be the light of my city."
Standouts: "Rubbin' Off the Paint"
"Glizzy Hella Geekin"
"I Got a Stick"
"If I Wanna" Feat. Key Glock
"The Race (Remix)"
"Gucci Gang (remix)"