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What do Young Thug 🎤 and Spiderman 🦸 have to do with Portland?

Portland rapper Aminé (Adam Amine Daniel) was born and raised in the Woodlawn neighborhood of Northeast Portland. He graduated from Benson Polytechnic High School, attended Portland State University, before he dropped out to make the music that has earned him the BET Hip Hop Awards – Best New Hip Hop Artist (2017), the Grammy Awards – Best Dance Recording (2021), an eleventh spot on the Billboard Hot 100, a gig on Jimmy Fallon’s Late Night Show, an acting gig (opposite actress Issa Rae) on HBO’s “Insecure,” a song, “Invisible” on the Spider-Man: Into the SpiderVerse soundtrack, not to mention the musical collaborations he’s had with singer-songwriter Kehlan, indie rockers Girlpool, Irish rapper Rejjie Snow, and, maybe most impressive of all, Young Thug.

Aminé’s parents, Etsehiwot Bekele and Daniel Amine, immigrated from Ethiopia to Portland, and he grew up speaking Amharic at home. His mother listened to Ethiopian music, combined with American musicians, like Michael Jackson, Tupac Shakur, John Mayer, and Kanye West. This diversity in music influenced Aminé to be unique in his own right, and explains why he isn’t a one-hit wonder. Aminé is here to stay.

His biggest hit to date, Caroline, has over 2.9 million likes on Youtube. A little over a year ago, Aminé released his album Limbo, with the hit song “Shimmy” – a song about Portland. (Woodlawn is also about his Portland neighborhood.)

He no longer lives in Portland, but he does return often. When asked about his hometown, and how he feels about white-led groups standing in solidarity with Black people, “I think it’s a beautiful thing. I’m also genuinely not surprised, but we’re also fighting for our lives as Black people in Portland. We’re fighting for our neighborhoods at the same time. Portland is going to have no Black people in it in the next 20 years, if it keeps moving the way it is.”

Shimmy

by Aminé
w/Lyrics

Aw man, aw man man man wassup?

It’s been a whole year my nigga
Let’s not front it’s my year my nigga
I’m here to fuck up ya whole career my nigga
Don’t play dumb dummy you know what’s the deal my nigga
A lot of y’all fake flexing nigga that is not ya necklace
And that whip ain’t yours nigga that’s the IRS’
I’m bigger than Texas me and God text message
Y’all see how easy lying is it’s easy to forget this

Shimmy shimmy ya y’all niggas get no applause
I’m looking like wealth so mami wanna ménage
Y’all niggas really hating get off of my dick and balls

Aw y’all niggas ain’t worthy
Y’all don’t pay dues
Y’all niggas pay up in thirsty
You thought you made an anthem but you just sang you a Fergie
Too many niggas biting I might need me 10 attorneys
Just cuz you bought that vintage Margiela
Don’t change ya flight from Spirit to Delta
Y’all niggas dress like you just came out the store
I got my groove back like Fela not Stella

Shimmy shimmy ya y’all niggas get no applause
I’m looking like wealth so mami wanna ménage
Y’all niggas really hating get off of my dick and balls

Ah I got verses on verses man this shit could go all day
I got a whip that’s blacker than the nigga from Allstate
Count your money up nigga do the mathematics
That’s not 200K that’s 20 dollas in yo pocket
It’s a cold cold world that we live in
I’m shittin on these niggas I make it my mission
The way I kill these niggas send my ass to prison
I knock a nigga head off then I’m dippin splittin

Ooo baby I like it raw
Ooo baby I like it raw
Ooo baby I like it raw
Ooo baby I like it raw
Ooo baby I like it raw
Ooo baby I like it raw
Ooo baby I like it raw
Ooo baby I like it raw