21 Savage has quickly become one of the hottest (& hardest) new rappers of 2016, working with just about everyone in the game, including Drake (who he received a gift Ferrari from), Meek Mill, Future, 2 Chainz, Young Thug, and many more. Known for his authenticity, 21 Savage lives a very “real” life in the streets, and typically portrays that in his music. But to get a better understanding of the environment he grew up in & just how "real" his life actually is, The Fader has asked the ATL trapper to be the topic of their magazine’s latest cover issue, written by Amos Barshad.

21 Savage’s cover story will serve as part of The FADER’s forthcoming Faith Issue, which hits newsstands in late December, and can be previewed right here. Until the physical copies are made, read some of the excerpts from the story below, which finds 21 Savage talking about childhood, bringing a gun to school, & why he started rapping, along with Metro Boomin talking about their project Savage Mode & 21 Savage’s attitude.

For those who wish to check out the full cover story on 21 Savage can do so right here.

21 Savage on his childhood:

“I probably broke the record for the youngest nigga to bring a gun to that school.”

21 Savage on why he started rapping:

“I wasn’t like, ‘I got shot, I’m finna be a rapper.’ Shit. I just started taking my goddamn dope money and spending it on studio time … I liked how the studio looked. The vibes. The cookies and shit. But I wasn’t rapping cause I was like, ‘Damn, I can get rich and famous.’ I was gonna get rich regardless. I was rapping ‘cause there wasn’t shit else to do.”

Metro Boomin, producer and collaborator, on 21 Savage’s attitude:

“Rap’s way too friendly. That’s why I fuck with him — it’s not buddy buddy, with five, six niggas on every song. It’s ‘Fuck that nigga.’ If you ever see 21 Savage do a song with a rapper, it’s because he got paid the way he wanted to get paid.”

Metro Boomin on Savage Mode:

“I like to do a lot of post-production, a lot of crazy shit. But [Savage] just wanted those motherfuckers clean. The simple, moody, dark beats — that created the proper bed. His voice just different.”