Indonesian-born teen rap sensation popularly known as Rich Chigga has decided to drop his controversial rap moniker at the start of the new year and simply use his first name, Brian.
“Yes I now go by ‘Brian’,” the rapper shared in a tweet. “I have been planning to do this forever and I’m so happy to finally do it. I was naive & I made a mistake. new year, new beginning, happy new years.”
Best known for his viral 2016 single “Dat $tick”, the rapper, whose full name is Brian Imanuel, grew up in Indonesia where he began his career in social media at age 11. He soon started making comedy skits on Vine and YouTube where he gained a significant following. He reportedly taught himself to speak English during his younger years by watching and listening to rappers like Childish Gambino, 2 Chainz, Macklemore and Tyler, The Creator.
His song even became a bigger hit after a reaction video featuring American rappers Ghostface Killah, 21 Savage, Tory Lanez, MadeinTYO, Desiigner was released. Despite the support he received from the rap community, he recognized the racially insensitive nature of his stage name “Rich Chigga”.
Even in interviews immediately following his popularity, he has expressed that he had regretted choosing the name Rich Chigga because when he picked it, he claimed he was “not trying to offend anyone.”
“My friend was like, ‘Let’s pick the most controversial shit ever.’ I didn’t really know what I was doing and I definitely did not know people were gonna pop off like this,” Imanuel told the Fader in 2016.
“Now I’m kind of stuck with this. I might change it in the future, I don’t know. I hope I can do it. But as for now, I’m definitely not going to let it be the only thing that defines me. It actually kinda motivates me to do better so when people listen to my music they’re like, “Oh shit, this is actually not bad.” I’m not going to make my music based around this ignorant ass name.”
After ditching his rapper alias, the talented teen now mononymously known as Brian, also shared a new song called “See Me”, which is the latest single off his upcoming debut album, Amen. The album will be released on February 2 via 88Rising Records.
Feature Image via Instagram/brianimanuel