Broadway Dolla$ born as Maurice Gray. Raised with two other siblings in the rough streets of New Haven, CT. Life in the projects back in the 80's wasn't as good as it is today. There were survival struggles nearly everyday. Yeah, I know what you're thinking; it couldn't be that bad in Connecticut well here's living proof. Just like any other state CT has it's ghetto's, drug dealers, murder rates going up and down, etc. In the mist of all this negativity there stood a talented poverty stricken youngster. Who at the time was on welfare with almost nothing but the talent he was given. Hip-hop became a big part of Dolla$'s life. See in the 80's hip-hop was still fairly new and this style of culture fascinated him. He could walk outside and watch people break dancing on the block, loud boom boxes playing (-hip-hop we set out in the dark/ we used to do it out in the park'). At an early age he had already become familiar with the big names in rap [Roxanne Shante, Doug E. Fresh, LL Cool J, Slick Rick, The Fat Boys]. Being that break dancing seemed the easiest he tried his hand at that first. Mimicking the steps of the big guys he used to watch, he became pretty good at it fast. So good that one day one of those big guys asked him to do shows with them, he was only six years old! After the break dancing fad faded, Dolla$ tried to find something else to do. Listening to rap music influenced him to write. At the time words that were written on paper he really couldn't quite put them together (deliver them) correctly. Nonetheless if you gave him some time he could recite it back to you. A lot of changes started going on in his life. What was happening out in the streets soon started in his home. Living conditions was now a big problem in his childhood, added on to the family not having much. So it was quite natural for him to write about what was happening in his life at the time. The future for Dolla$ wasn't at all looking too bright. Decisions were made, and then he and his siblings went on to live with some other family members. See in his world nothing ever really changes it just gets covered up. Getting adapted to a new neighborhood blurred his focus a little. A new school and new friends wasn't really a big dream of his, but at the age of ten there wasn't much he could do about it. Once he found out that his new friends liked to rap, sing and dance they entered school talent shows. They first began performing songs written and sung by much more popular individuals such as ig Daddy Kane, Boys II Men, and BBD. The good thing about it all was that they gained loving respect for their work as a whole. Although this was not what Dolla$ had in mind he still enjoyed the art of it all. As time went on and he got more experienced with recording in studio's and the music business, a more intellectual Dolla$ was developed. His first real album was cut with some of his close friends that all formed a group called Madd Trife. While in the studio recording these records, he paid close attention to the engineer Tom Ransom who indirectly showed him how multi-tracks should sound after being mixed thoroughly. Dolla$ was considered one of the more serious members of the now dismantled group. Rap wasn't his main focus, he figured since he could already put words together and people enjoyed hearing him that was already in the pocket. What was more important now was the business part of music, artist production, music production and marketing/promotion. After separating himself from the group he had new thoughts in his mind not only to become a solo artist, but to create his own record label. This artist kept himself very busy by reading books and guides on the music business preferably ["Start and Run your own Record Label" by Daylle Deanna Schwartz]. He followed nearly all the steps to reach his goal. In doing these things he still performed in the local area at bars and clubs creating a following for himself. He is now an ASCAP member as a writer and publisher. This artist/ entrepreneur is truly an asset to any major label.
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