We’ve seen the rise of the viral rapper already. An artist releases a song that takes him or her from buzzing to Billboard’s Hot 100 and is presumed to be a success. And while plaques are cool, longevity is more important. Take Paterson, N.J.’s Fetty Wap—real name Willie Maxwell—who saw what it’s like to skyrocket to fame after the success of his 2014 summer anthem, “Trap Queen.” Alongside his label, RGF Productions, and crew, Remy Boyz 1738, the song’s SoundCloud numbers hit six figures within weeks of its release—without initial blog love, radio play, or industry support. But his squad saw firsthand how a song goes viral in the Tri-State area—first you hear it in the streets, and then enough people search for it online that by the time Hot 97 gets to it, it’s already inching its way up the charts.

But what Fetty has done with the Tony Fadd and Brian “Peoples” Garcia-produced banger has broken records—and he’s gone on to show he’s no one-hit wonder, either. This week, Fetty has four songs in the Billboard Hot 100—”679” at No. 8, “Trap Queen” at No. 9, “My Way” at No. 11, and “Again” at No. 40. But the story of where it all began—on the streets of Paterson, N.J., with a few friends, a few studio sessions, and a free beat Fetty’s manager found online—hasn’t yet been told. We spoke to the 25-year-old new star along with RGF’s Monty, Nitt Da Gritt, Brian “Peoples” Garcia, and the song’s original producer, Tony Fadd, for the stories behind the biggest song of the last year.