It's the Cinderella story in hip-hop: The street smart, cocksure kid uses realness and youthful charisma to surmount personal obstacles. But as inspirational as the rise is, the fall can be equally devastating. Such is the tale of 24-year-old Ackquille Jean Pollard, a.k.a. Bobby Shmurda, who is currently serving a seven-year sentence for conspiracy to possess weapons and possession of a weapon at the Clinton Correctional Facility in upstate New York.
In the summer of 2014, Shmurda dropped his smash hit "Hot N***a." The block loved it. The burbs loved it. Hell, Beyoncé loved it; she did her own version of the video's Shmoney Dance while on tour. Pretty soon, Shmurda was on TV, performing and showing off the summer's hottest trending dance.
The best way to describe Shmurda during this time period was "starstruck." He smiled easily and laughed easily. He signed a deal with a major label and began production on his debut album. The lucrative checks from live appearances rolled in. Shmurda didn't seem to have a care in the world. But in the age of social media, careers come and go quickly. At his peak, Shmurda was performing onstage with Drake and Meek Mill. And though he's currently at a low point, he may one day reach those heights again.
"You know everybody has something to say," said Shmurda in a September 2016 interview with Complex, responding to people's pessimism about his future. "I’ll be worried when they say nothing. I don’t listen to what people say. People been talking about me since I was born."
Here's a comprehensive timeline of Bobby Shmurda's ascent, descent, and potential comeback.