At the age of 21, Cleveland-native Q Money has lived a life that many could never imagine. He’s also accomplished what many artists spend their entire lives working towards: developing a fanbase and a following that is sure to carry him to success and longevity in the music business. And he’s done that part in just one year.
By late 2015, Q Money had been dodging trouble for most of his life both in school and in the streets. He was also a talented rapper and a harismatic fixture on the local social scene with the kind of star quality that simply cannot be taught. So he made the decision to change his life by focusing on his music. Within just weeks of the release of his first single, “Prive,” he had already begun capturing the attention of local DJs and other artists. But still, with no history as an artist, he felt like his music may not be connecting with local listeners. And with very little entertainment music knowledge or industry support, he figured out that he could use his second great talent – dancing – to turn his local hit into a viral sensation. The first dance video he uploaded garnered enough attention to put him on his local radio station’s radar. He followed up his “Prive” dance video with the release of two more songs, including “Never Had S**t,” which solidified his position as the next artist to watch out of Cleveland. Then days before he was scheduled to perform at one of the biggest concerts in his city, Power Fest, his past caught up to him: Q Money was sentenced to 90 days in jail on a commuted charge.
Ironically, what landed Q in jail was actually meant to be his last foray into the street game. In addition to his budding career, he was also awaiting the arrival of his son. By the time he had reached his senior year of high school, Q was no stranger to getting in trouble. Always a gifted student, he always did enough to get by in school. And while he was also a gifted basketball player, earning a starting position on his middle school’s team in the 8th grade, which allowed him to practice with the high school teams, his attention was elsewhere. There was a certain lifestyle he wanted that he simply couldn’t get as a student and the teenage son of working class parents. And so his first experience with the criminal justice system came in the 8th grade when he caught a theft charge that landed him in juvenile detention for a year. There, he was exposed to other kids his age who had already begun selling drugs. Still, with the guidance of his mother, he returned to school and got a job as a lifeguard. But the allure was too much to resist. And so he found his way into the drug game, first selling weed then moving on to narcotics. As his music was starting to pick up, Q was awaiting the disposition of a previous case when he was set up by a former customer. Still, one’s destiny can never be deterred: between a strong legal team and a judge who must have seen promise in what this young man’s life would become, the two cases were combined into one fairly short sentence. And a threat: get in trouble again and face three years. He remains on probation for both cases.
Somehow, despite the age of the social media making it hard for public figures to add much, his growing fanbase was totally unaware of Q Money’s absence. His first performance after coming home was in front of 400 fans who all skipped another event on the same night featuring more established local artists.In the months since, the attention has expanded beyond his city and even beyond the midwest, with Q beginning to draw the attention of established figures in the music business. The independent release of his debut project Win is set to prove what Cleveland already knows: Q Money is a certified star
First Mixtape: “Neva Had Sh* t” Debuts 3/2
- Hit Single “Work” currently #42 on Urban Radio
- Collaborations with YFN Lucci, Money Man, Cuban Doll and more
- Almost 3 milllion YouTube views & growing
- Complex’s “10 Dope New Songs Bout to Blow” list
- Over 40,000 Shazams
- Apple Music Gymflow Playlist
- Apple Music Breaking Hip Hop Playlist
- Apple Music The New Atlanta Playlist