Photo Credit: Daniel Prakopcyk
Gashi, the self-proclaimed Phil Collins of trap music, is a New York based rapper known for his vulnerability in music and for his fashion sense. The African-born Albanian has struggled throughout his life to keep his family and himself afloat. Through music he’s been able to do that and more by representing himself and his community. Labinot Gashi was born in Libya on October 4, 1989. Both of his parents are Albanian from Kosovo in Libya. As a child, his family was refugees in several countries before coming to America and settling in Brooklyn, New York.
Once his family came to the United States, Labinot struggled with English and used music as a way to learn the language. Rap music was an outlet for the artist. The mixed culture of Brooklyn provided even more inspiration for Gashi as he begun to blend sounds together. After speaking to Nipsey Hussle about his thoughts on music, the young artist-to-be took action. While in college for football, Gashi dropped out of school to pursue music.
In 2010, Gashi release his first mixtape, The Kid Gashi. The next year, mixtape number two, Last of a Rare Breed, was released. The project featured Nipsey Hussle and French Montana. The following year, he released “Rocket” and “Beautiful World”. The budding artist attracted the eyes of clothing brand ‘Problem Child NYC’ and became a modeling representative for the clothing company.
2013 saw the release of follow-up mixtape I’ll Be Right With You. Gashi saw the release of 4Play, on his birthday of 2014. This 15-track project included hit single, “Room 4” which addressed feelings of people that are overlooked and taken for granted. Gashi later announced his studio album Stairs under the label Order in 2016. Many tracks on the album were highly praised and very well received. Listeners and critics alike can hear the vulnerability in emotion that is discussed throughout the project. The dynamic production and lyrical flow of Gashi earned him a lot of fans.
2017 was a hit year for the artist. Gashi released four singles, “Turn Me Down”, “Disrespectful”, “24 Hours”, and “No No No”. Each of which helped the rapper gain some more recognition in the music industry. “Disrespectful” garnered millions of streams on music platforms. Gashi also appeared on DJ Snakes’ “Oh Me Oh My” with Migos and Travis Scott. He did another collaboration with DJ Snake and French Montana on the track “Creep On Me”, and the track became a massive success for the rapper.
Earlier this year, Gashi released “My Year” with G-Eazy. The club banger track gained attention through streams and radio play. He also featured DJ Snake again on his singles “Roses” and “Safety”. In September, Gashi sought to show that music and hip-hop are crucial to him with his first major self titled release GASHI. Gashi creates introspective music with rhythmic tracks. The Brooklyn based rapper is bringing hot style, lyrics, and flow to the music industry. He’s making moves in music and doesn’t seem to be stopping anytime soon. Maybe this is part of the reason why he got “Never Quit” tattooed on his neck.