William Leonard Roberts II, popularly known as Rick Ross in the world of R&B and rap, is a famous American rap artist and record label owner. He has successfully released six studio albums until now and is the founder of the famous Maybach Music Group, along with other founding members like, Wale, Meek Mill and French Montana. Ross was into street music since a very young age, courtesy growing up in an impoverished area of north of Miami. He dropped out of college to pursue his dream of becoming a famous rap artist but he also got himself involved with the drug dealing business—the kind of culture he grew up in. Before signing his first record deal, Ross was a correctional officer for a few years—a thing that he has been ridiculed for many times in the media owing to his history of selling drugs. His very first single that released commercially was ‘Hustlin’’, which made him into a star as it was certified gold and it was because of this success that he got an opportunity to sign a record deal with Jay-Z’s Def Records. He has worked with various other rap and R&B artists in his career like, Ne-Yo, R Kelly, Flo-Rida, Diddy, etc.
Ross first got the opportunity to sign a deal with Suave House Records but eventually he signed the recording deal with Slip-n-Slide Records. Through this he got the opportunity to tour with Trick Daddy and feature on their albums.
Ross’ debut hit single ‘Hustin’’, which had a fascinatingly repetitive line ‘Everyday I’m Hustling’ throughout the song, became a smash hit and was certified gold and Ross became the hot new rap artist on the block.
His success struck a bidding war between various recording artists. Def Records, which was headed by the ace rap artist Jay-Z, won the bid and signed Ross to a famous record deal of that time.
Ross’ debut album ‘Port of Miami’ in 2006 peaked on the top position on the US Billboard 200. It received gold certification from the Recording Industry Association of America and had smash hits like, ‘Push It’, ‘Holla at Me’, etc.
He followed it up with ‘Trilla’—his second album that released in 2008. Ross dedicated it as a tribute to his idol Michael Jackson’s album ‘Thriller’. The album also peaked at number 1 position at the US Billboard Charts.
With his newly found success, Ross started to tour more often and made public appearances. He started to collaborate with other rap artists and wrote and performed rap with Jay-Z, R Kelly, Flo-Rida, Lil Wayne, Young Jeezy, etc.
His third studio album ‘Deeper Than Rap’ released in 2009 on his own label Maybach Music Group but the distribution was still under Def Recordings. It sold 158,000 copies in its first week in the US alone.
In the following year, he released his fourth album ‘Teflon Don’, which featured hit singles like ‘Super High’, ‘Live Fast, Die Young’ and collaborated with artists like Ne-Yo, Kanye West, etc. It peaked at No. 2 on the charts.
In the same year, he collaborated with Diddy, with whom he signed a management deal with his venture Ciroc Entertainment, on an EP that they were working together on. They released a single from the EP—‘Another One’.
In 2012, Ross released ‘God Forgives, I Don’t’; the album featured singles like ‘You the Boss’, ‘I Love My Bitches’. It debuted at No. 2 on the UK R&B Album Chart and No.1 on the Billboard200--his highest-charting album.
Ross released his sixth studio album ‘Mastermind’ in 2013 by first releasing the single ‘No Games’ featuring artist Future. It features singles like—‘The Devil Is A Lie’, ‘War Ready’, etc.
Who is Rick Ross? Everything You Need to Know