Birth name Ishmael Ali
Born (1996-08-28) August 28, 1996 (age 23)

Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Genres Hip hop
  • Singer
  • rapper
  • songwriter
  • actor
Years active 2015–present
Associated acts

Ishmael Ali (known professionally as IshDARR) is an American rapper, hip hop artist, and actor from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He has released 2 EPs and 3 LPs. His most recent project, the mixtape Slow Down, KID, was released in November 2018 and was distributed by EMPIRE. IshDARR is also an actor who had a role in the 2018 film, White Boy Rick.

Early life and education [ edit ]

Ishmael Ali was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He and his family moved to Waukegan, Illinois for a few years before moving back to Milwaukee when Ali was 7 or 8.[1] He began making music, freestyling, and writing lyrics in 7th grade.[2] As a freshman at Messmer High School, Ali met his future manager (Enrique "Mag" Rodriguez) who was friends with his older brother and fellow rapper, Isaiah "BoodahDARR" Ali. The three (along with another Messmer rapper, Wave Chappelle) formed a group called the iLL Collective which released three songs before disbanding when BoodahDARR went to college. Rodriguez began working with IshDARR on music in late 2013 and early 2014 using a studio in the high school.[3][4] IshDARR graduated from Messmer in 2014.[5]

Career [ edit ]

In early 2014 as IshDARR was preparing to release his debut solo EP, he was contacted by an A&R representative at Epic Records, Amanda Berkowitz. She would later become IshDARR's mentor and co-manager.[4] He released his EP, The Better Life, in April 2014. The day after the collection's release, he opened for Schoolboy Q, Isaiah Rashad, Vince Staples, and Audio Push at The Rave in Milwaukee.[5] In the summer of that year, IshDARR and his manager Enrique Rodriguez were flown to Los Angeles to have a meeting with Mike Caren, the Vice President of A&R at Atlantic Records at the time. Although the two decided against signing a deal, IshDARR received interest from several record labels afterward,[4] and joined The Agency Group (a talent booking firm) in December 2014.[3] He also opened up for Ab-Soul on his "These Days" tour in the fall of 2014.[6]

In March 2015, he released his first mixtape, Old Soul, Young Spirit, which featured the single "Too Bad".[6] The song gained increased popularity after actress Chloë Grace Moretz tweeted it out to her followers. It also reached the top 10 on Hype Machine[3] and garnered over 7 million streams by the following year.[4] IshDARR performed at South by Southwest in 2015[3] and toured Europe later that year and in early 2016.[7] In the summer of 2016, he performed at Summerfest in Milwaukee opening for Jason Derulo on the main stage.[2]

In October 2016, he released his second mixtape, Broken Hearts & Bankrolls,[2] which featured the single, "Sugar".[4] In November of that year, IshDARR was featured on the Jacob Latimore track, "The Real", and its accompanying video.[8] Throughout the year, he opened for a variety of acts including Anderson Paak, PartyNextDoor, and Jeremih.[9] In April 2017, it was announced that IshDARR had been cast as Steven "Freaky Steve" Roussell in the film, White Boy Rick, starring Matthew McConaughey.[10] The film, which also featured IshDARR's brother BoodahDARR, had its wide release in September 2018.[11]

Later in April 2017, IshDARR released an EP, Four The Better, which featured the singles "Free"[12] and "Mucho Mango".[13] Later that year, he again appeared at Summerfest,[14] this time in a headlining role. His performance was recorded for the music video for his single, "Sanity".[15] In 2018, he began releasing several new tracks, starting with "They Lost Me 2"[16] and "Fangs" in January.[17] He followed that with "Critical" in May[18] and "Slow Down" in October.[19]

All of those tracks appeared on his mixtape, Slow Down, KID, released in November 2018[20] and distributed by EMPIRE.[21] A deluxe edition of the LP was released in April 2019 and featured 4 additional tracks.[22] In March 2019, IshDARR was featured alongside his brother on the Royal Waev track, "Checks & Balances".[23] He was also featured on the Saint Parish track "Drown"[22] and the Genesis Renji song "Wannabe" later in the year.[24]

Discography [ edit ]

Mixtapes [ edit ]

List of mixtapes with selected details
Title Details
Old Soul, Young Spirit
Broken Hearts & Bankrolls
Slow Down, KID

EPs [ edit ]

List of EPs with selected details
Title Details
The Better Life
Four The Better

Singles [ edit ]

List of singles with selected details
Title Year Album
"Too Bad" 2015 Old Soul, Young Spirit
"Sugar" 2016 Broken Hearts & Bankrolls
"Free" 2017 Four The Better
"They Lost Me 2" 2018 Slow Down, KID
"Never Ask (Subpar Funk)" (feat. Floor Cry)
"Slow Down"

Filmography [ edit ]

Year Film Role
2018 White Boy Rick Steven "Freaky Steve" Roussell

References [ edit ]

  1. ^ Gonderman, Brenna (5 September 2014). "Interview with IshDARR: A Young Milwaukee Emcee". Radio Milwaukee. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  2. ^ a b c C.M., Emmanuel (21 October 2016). "The Break Presents: IshDARR". XXL. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  3. ^ a b c d Levy, Piet (3 June 2015). "Milwaukee rapper Ish Darr, 18, getting national noise". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  4. ^ a b c d e Grihalva, Joey (20 October 2016). "Meet the man behind Milwaukee's rap phenom IshDARR". Wisconsin Gazette. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  5. ^ a b Rytlewski, Evan (16 April 2014). "IshDARR and the New Face of Conscious Rap". Shepherd Express. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  6. ^ a b Nostro, Lauren (4 March 2015). "Premiere: Stream Milwaukee Rapper IshDARR's "Old Soul Young Spirit" Album". Complex. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  7. ^ Grefe, Cliff (24 March 2016). "The Wisconsin Soul: The Best Rappers Out Of The Badger State". HipHopDX. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  8. ^ Ortiz, Edwin (10 November 2016). "Premiere: Watch Jacob Latimore's "The Real" Video With Ishdarr". Complex. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  9. ^ Levy, Piet (5 June 2017). "Wisconsin Bands to Watch 2016: Where are they now?". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  10. ^ Levy, Piet (5 April 2017). "Milwaukee rapper IshDARR cast in 'White Boy Rick,' starring Matthew McConaughey". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  11. ^ Levy, Piet (7 September 2018). "Milwaukee rappers (and brothers) hit the big screen with Matthew McConaughey in 'White Boy Rick'". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  12. ^ Levy, Piet (13 April 2017). "Breakout Milwaukee rapper IshDARR shows real star potential at Turner Hall Ballroom". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  13. ^ Moore, Jacob (13 April 2017). "Listen to Milwaukee Rapper IshDARR's New Project 'Four The Better'". Complex. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  14. ^ Lamarre, Carl (31 May 2017). "Rising Rapper IshDARR Talks Milwaukee Roots & Acting Alongside Matthew McConaughey in Upcoming Movie 'White Boy Rick'". Billboard. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  15. ^ Wild, Matt (14 August 2017). "Watch IshDARR dominate Summerfest 2017 in video for "Sanity"". Milwaukee Record. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  16. ^ P., Milca (20 January 2018). "IshDARR Previews Debut Album With "They Lost Me 2"". HotNewHipHop. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  17. ^ Steindorf, Jack (29 January 2018). "IshDARR unleashes a dynamic hip-hop flow in latest single "Fangs"". Earmilk. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  18. ^ Ortiz, Edwin (24 May 2018). "Premiere: IshDARR Shares New Song "Critical"". Complex. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  19. ^ Saponara, Michael (29 October 2018). "IshDARR Shows No Signs Of Stopping With New Single 'Slow Down': Premiere". Billboard. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  20. ^ A., Aron (2 November 2018). "IshDARR Comes Through Strong On His Sophomore Album "Slow Down, KID"". HotNewHipHop. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  21. ^ Van Sol, Matt (5 December 2018). "Milwaukee's Newest Hometown Hero Hits Over a Million Streams in 20 days with "Slow Down Kid"". The Source. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  22. ^ a b Rytlewski, Evan (7 May 2019). "Milwaukee Hip-Hop Round-Up: Mari Boy Mula Mar, ICYGUAP, 54 Baby Trey,, FBE Savage and Kash". Shepherd Express. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  23. ^ Baghai, Stephanie (5 March 2019). "Two Milwaukee producers call on IshDARR and BoodahDARR for an amped-up breakout single". Radio Milwaukee. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  24. ^ Rytlewski, Evan (16 July 2019). "Milwaukee Rap Roundup: Destinee Lynn, Spanish Rice, Lil Saucy, Spidey Mayweather, Genesis Renji and more". Radio Milwaukee. Retrieved 30 August 2019.

External links [ edit ]

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