Imagine being born, and 36 days later, your father is sent to jail for committing a crime; you have to speak to him every day for years through a telephone and watch his relationship with your mother as its affected. While that paints a sad picture, try envisioning your best friend being killed and your brother also being jailed. Such is the life of Pressa, whose hardships have motivated him to do better. He prides himself as an investor with a real estate portfolio and other legitimate businesses. However, he is mainly known for his rapping skills, and you can learn a bit more about him from these facts.
1. He Started Making Music in Grade Four
The rapper told Complex that he has always liked music. Therefore when he was in grade four, he would record himself rapping 50 Cent songs to hear how he would sound. He later began writing his own lyrics but never focused on being a rapper. However, when the police killed his best friend, he took rap seriously to process his emotions.
2. His Father Was Found Guilty of Second-Degree Murder
Pressa’s father was known as Prestige in the neighborhood where they lived. People were afraid of him thanks to his drug and violence convictions, and one day his anger led to him committing murder. According to The Globe and Mail, Prestige experienced a delay in the hallway when going to a county dance. He took out his anger on a security guard, David Williams. Prestige told Williams he would kill him and went to his car to get a handgun which he fired once at Williams. He was found guilty and sentenced to 20 years in prison.
3. He Grew Up in Poverty
The rapper grew up in Jane and Finch neighborhood in Toronto, which according to Toronto Centre for Community Learning & Development, was characterized as a hub for drug dealing, crime, and social problems. As per the survey, when it was established, the neighborhood had to face many challenges. Pressa’s circumstances were worsened when his father went to jail, leaving Pressa’s mother to fend for her two young sons. During a court hearing for her husband’s sentencing, Pressa’s mother submitted a letter revealing her financial struggles.
4. His Brother was the Head of a Drug Distribution Ring in Toronto
Devon Jones, a school teacher, tried to get Pressa’s brother Chermar off the streets. Jones knew that the Driftwood environment would not be favorable for the young boy thus encouraged Chermar to join Youth Association for Academics, Athletics and Character Education. Unfortunately, the street life had already affected Chermar, so he began skipping school to work part-time. Eventually, he ventured into selling drugs and became the leader of Young Buck Killers, a violent gang that sold drugs and guns.
5. He Recorded “Wass Gang” as a Tribute to His Late Best Friend
Jones tried to help teenagers like Chermar and Kwasi Skene-Peters, aka Wassi, stay off the streets. Sadly, the two boys were beyond redemption. While Chermar wound up in prison, Wassi died during a firefight. An investigation revealed Wassi had fired the first shot leading to the police officers firing back in self-defense. Although it was sad, Wassi’s death prompted Pressa to take rapping seriously; hence he recorded “Wass Gang” in honor of his slain friend.
6. He Was Once Accused of Being Behind a Kidnapping
CBC News reported that in April 2016, Pressa had been arrested following the kidnapping, beating, and sexual abuse of two gang members. It was alleged that the rapper was already second in line to Young Buck Killers since his brother was the leader; it made sense that he was assumed to have taken over when Chermar went to jail. Pressa was only 19 then and, once in prison, was beaten by other rival gang members. The Young Buck Killers later plotted for revenge that resulted in the death of a young pregnant woman.
7. His Choice of Friends has Always Been Questionable
Pressa grew up with Wassi as his best friend, yet Wassi was involved in a gang. You would think that the rapper would learn from the mistakes of his friend and family members, but he did not. Even after witnessing his father and brother go to jail, Pressa still likes keeping close ties with gang members. He has for so long been associated with being a gang member, and his choice of friends is wanting. For instance, he once traveled to Russia with Naseem Mohammed, a Brothers Keepers gang member who is a fugitive wanted for drug trafficking charges.
8. He Avoids Staying in Toronto
The guilty are always afraid, and Pressa believes that if he stayed in Toronto, the police would be out to get him, yet he is innocent. However, he blames the articles for publishing that he is involved in illegal business, yet he insists he runs a legitimate business. He said that such negative publicity had put his career at risk citing incidences when law enforcement canceled his shows at the last minute without reasonable cause. Pressa, therefore, prefers being in Vancouver.
9. His Top Two Moments
Pressa’s interview with Beatroute revealed that one of the moments he considers great was landing in America. He said that crossing the border was exciting, and he now lives in Los Angeles full time as he hopes to connect with US producers. The other moment that still lights up his eyes was when he went on tour with Drake. He opened the show for the Canadian rapper; at the time, Pressa was facing kidnapping charges. Luckily, he was free on bail for a year and a half, enabling him to go on that tour.
10. He is Dating Coi Leray
The two sparked dating rumors after a TikTok video that showed them cozied up. Although none of them confirmed it, the response Leray tweeted after people said Pressa looked like a girl was enough to make it clear that the two had been intimate. The couple has even collaborated on a song, “Attachments.”