Who Is EST Gee?

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Future And Friends One Big Party Tour - Chicago, ILL
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - JANUARY 20: Rapper EST Gee backstage during Future and Friends "One Big Party Tour" at United Center on January 20, 2023 in Chicago, Illinois.(Prince Williams/Wireimage)
Louisville rapper EST Gee has been through the wringer, resulting in a composed yet enraged sound that transcends today's hip-hop scene.

EST Gee lets the music do the talking, such as on the new single "Turn The Streets Up." The Louisville, KY rapper was born to humble beginnings in the Clarksdale projects -- a notoriously crime-ridden neighborhood of the city. In high school, rap wasn't exactly on the radar of EST Gee. In fact, he felt as though his best chance at making a successful career out of himself was in football.

"All everyone cares about in Louisville is making it to college sports. I had to try to make it for my people, especially ’cause I never been bad at nothin’," he told Pitchfork. His 6"1' figure and athletic talents earned him a football scholarship at Indiana State University. Although he became a promising prospect, his football career would be derailed after he dropped out of college. Eventually, he was put on house arrest for drug trafficking charges and forced to evaluate a new potential career path.

His many failures throughout his formative years have molded him into a composed and dedicated figure. That temperament has translated into his raps, which contain wise words that one might hear from a life-long mentor. EST Gee's verses cover unsettling street tales, cynical and overbearing in nature. Named George Stone III, he's certainly been through the wringer throughout his short 29-year life. From a failed football career to a house arrest, EST Gee found himself motivated to pursue rap by 2017. However, this would only be a prelude to his struggles. At a music video shoot in 2019, he was shot four times in the stomach and one time in the left eye. In addition, EST Gee's mother and brother would tragically pass away within a week of each other in 2020. This is someone who's seen the world's lowest, which is directly reflected in his enraged yet composed sound.

EST Gee Blew Up In 2020

(Photo by Prince Williams/Filmmagic)

His 2020 mixtape, I Still Don't Feel Nun, put EST Gee on the map. Aided by the star power of artists like Kevin Gates, Moneybagg Yo, and Jack Harlow, among others, his narrative approach is far different from many of his contemporaries. He's not glorifying street life, bragging about lavish jewelry, or one-upping another man through violence. Instead, EST Gee is sullen about the streets, doing the opposite of glorifying that lifestyle. “I know you heard about G/Last n***as that played with me had two, three surgeries/The young n***as can learn from me/The opps dream about burnin’ me," he raps on "Get Money." A quick interview with EST Gee explains this perspective. Equipped with a stoic perspective, little of his demeanor seems to blend in with the unpredictability of his upbringing. Instead, EST Gee seeks stability after already living out the emotional baggage of multiple lives within one.

EST Gee's sound blends the sonic influences surrounding Louisville, Kentucky. The area isn't exactly a breeding ground for worldwide creatives, meaning that he was forced to pull from what was around him. As a result, his sonic palette stands out amongst his peers of trap rappers. He contains both the rage of Chicago's drill scene and the lyrical covers of areas such as Baton Rouge. Utilizing music as a vessel for his suffering, EST Gee began his mission of becoming a household name hip-hop scene by 2020. His unique sound was quickly caught on by Yo Gotti, who signed him to Collective Music Group. While already gaining significant praise from established figures, his fifth mixtape, Bigger Than Life Or Death, released via CMG, boasted appearances from Future and Lil Baby.

He's One Of The Most Consistent MCs Out

(photo by Prince Williams/Wireimage)

It's already been a big 2023 for rapper EST Gee. Back in March, he released a 14-track album in the form of MAD. The album received mixed reviews for its commercial sound compared to the cold-blooded nature of his breakout mixtapes Ion Feel Nun and I Still Dont Feel Nun. However, the project still has plenty of stand-out moments such as the drum-fueled "Blow Up" or the melodic success of "Us." EST Gee is more retrospective on the project, looking back on how his mainstream success has impacted his local Louisville community. On "Undefeated," he reflects on how his mother's passing has left a hole in his personal life. In essence, MAD solidified EST Gee as one of the most consistent MCs out.

Only two months later, EST Gee is back with his single "Turn The Streets Up." The song is direct and hard-hitting, with EST Gee playing the villain role amidst lyrical creative bars. He also expresses growth with his hook game, employing a unique vocal cadence. In essence, this is someone who's displaying immense hunger after finally making it through a variety of tragedies and trials throughout his life. Armed with support from contemporaries such as 42 Dugg or Future, EST Gee has an illustrious and influential career ahead.

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