Denzel Rae Don Curry (born February 16, 1995) is an American rapper, singer, and composer. Raised in Carol City, Florida, Curry started rapping while in sixth grade and began working on his first mixtape in 2011, when he was attending school. Influenced by underground Florida rapper SpaceGhostPurrp, the mixtape was later featured on Purrp's social media, giving Curry local attention and resulting in Curry joining Purrp's hip-hop collective, Raider Klan.
Curry during an interview in May 2019
|Birth name||Denzel Rae Don Curry|
|Also known as|
|Born||February 16, 1995|
Carol City, Florida, U.S.
Curry left Raider Klan in 2013, releasing his debut studio album, Nostalgic 64, in September of that year, while still in high school. He has gone on to release four more projects, 32 Zel/Planet Shrooms on June 9, 2015, Imperial on March 9, 2016, and Ta13oo on July 27, 2018, which debuted at number 28 on the Billboard 200 chart. His fourth studio album, Zuu, was released on May 31, 2019, to further acclaim.
Denzel Rae Don Curry was born on February 16, 1995, in Carol City, Florida. He is of Bahamian descent through both his mother and father. Curry started down an artist's path with early poetry ambitions in Elementary School before he began rapping in the sixth grade. His time was spent at a local Boys & Girls Club where he challenged others to rap battles. He attended Miami's Design and Architecture High School for two years until being expelled. Curry then attended Miami Carol City Senior High School, where he started working on Nostalgic 64 while still attending class. In a 2018 interview with The Breakfast Club, Curry disclosed that he was molested by an unnamed older male during his childhood.
2011–12: Career beginningsEdit
On September 24, 2011, Curry released his first mixtape, titled King Remembered Underground Tape 1991–1995. The whole project that Curry posted was later included on SpaceGhostPurrp's page, which prompted the birth of Denzel's music career. Following the release of Curry's first mixtape, Curry became a member of SpaceGhostPurrp's hip hop group, called Raider Klan.
In 2012, he released his second mixtape, titled King of the Mischievous South Vol. 1 Underground Tape 1996, which caught the attention of fellow American rapper Earl Sweatshirt and other members of the Odd Future label.
Curry's third mixtape, titled Strictly for My R.V.I.D.X.R.S., was released after the death of Trayvon Martin, who also lived in Carol City and went to the same high school as Denzel Curry. His style of rap on this mixtape was inspired by Tupac Shakur.
2013–14: Nostalgic 64Edit
The group Raider Klan was disbanded, which led to Curry deciding to embark on his solo rap career. On September 3, 2013, Curry released his debut full-length album, titled Nostalgic 64. The album features guest appearances from JK the Reaper, Lil Ugly Mane, Mike G, Nell, Robb Bank$, Stephen A. Clark, and Yung Simmie, among others. In 2014, Curry was featured on Deniro Farrar's track, called "Bow Down" (included from Farrar's Rebirth EP) and Curry was featured on Dillon Cooper's track, called "Eyes of the World" (included from Cooper's X:XX mixtape).
2015–16: 32 Zel/Planet Shrooms and ImperialEdit
On June 9, 2015, Curry released his first double EP, titled 32 Zel/Planet Shrooms, which contained his breakout single "Ultimate". The song went viral, and was played over Bottle Flip videos among others. It has amassed over 100 million streams on Spotify and earned 30 million views on YouTube despite the lack of a music video. His first release in 2016 was the single "Flying Nimbus".
2017–2018: 13 and Ta13ooEdit
On May 13, 2017, Curry uploaded a track titled "Hate Government [demo]" to his SoundCloud account. In the weeks that followed, he released two more demos for songs titled "Equalizer [demo]" and "Zeltron 6 Billion" featuring Lil Ugly Mane. After these releases as well as a series of cryptic posts on social media (seemingly portraying another alter ego called Zeltron), he released an EP titled 13 on June 25, 2017. All of the demo tracks were included on the EP as well as two other new songs. On August 18, 2017, Curry released another song called "Skywalker." Later that year, on September 22, a remastered version of 32 Zel was released, including a remix of "Ultimate" featuring Juicy J.
Since he started releasing demos for songs on 13, Curry made several mentions of his third studio album titled, Ta13oo. 13 serves as a sampler to Ta13oo, and no release date for the album was announced. On February 28, 2018, he appeared on the song "Kristi," by artist ASAP Ferg, which also featured IDK. It was first performed live in Austin, TX on March 10, during their collaborative tour. On March 16, 2018, he uploaded the song "Uh Huh," once again featuring IDK, onto his official YouTube channel.
On April 2, 2018, Curry released the lead single off of Ta13oo titled "Sumo" on Zane Lowe's Beats 1 radio show. On May 24, 2018, Curry released the second single off the album titled, "Percs". Curry then released the third single titled, "Clout Cobain", on July 13, 2018, and announced that his album Ta13oo, would be released in three acts: The first act, Light, was released on July 25, followed by Gray on July 26, and Dark on July 27. Each previously-released single represents one of the album's acts, as "Sumo" represents Light, "Clout Cobain" represents Gray, and "Percs" represents Dark, which come together cohesively to form Ta13oo.
2019–present: Zuu, 13lood In + 13lood Out, and UnlockedEdit
On February 14, 2019, Curry performed a cover of "Bulls on Parade" by Rage Against the Machine on the Australian radio station Triple J as part of Like a Version, which was met with general acclaim.
On May 8, 2019, Curry released "Ricky", his first single since the release of Ta13oo. The song is titled after his father, whom the song is inspired by. On May 22, 2019, Curry released a second single title "Speedboat" and announced the release of his next album Zuu for May 31, 2019.
On July 15, 2019, Curry made his television debut on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, performing a medley of "Ricky" and "Wish" from his album Zuu. He also revealed that he had cut his signature dreadlocks.
On January 6, 2020, Curry released 13lood 1n + 13lood Out, an EP featuring fellow rappers Ghostemane, Xavier Wulf, ZillaKami and AK of The Underachievers. The project was initially announced in November 2018.
On March 4, 2014, Curry's brother Treon Johnson died of injuries from being tasered and pepper sprayed by police. Officers had responded to reports of Johnson throwing coconuts from a roof at a dog that bit him. Curry has said that his brother died of an apparent cardiac arrest when he went into sepsis from a freak injury after being tasered.
- Marcus, Ezra (December 3, 2013). "We Talked to Denzel Curry About Nostalgia, the Zodiac, and Fiji Water". Vice. Archived from the original on June 10, 2015.
- Charles, Laurie (November 28, 2013). "Denzel Curry, Crown Prince of Rap". Miami New Times.
- Trotman, Shiyah (January 14, 2014). "Nostalgia: Denzel Curry Describes That Old Feeling". The Source. The Northstar Group. Retrieved May 30, 2015.
- Breakfast Club Power 105.1 FM (9 October 2018). "Denzel Curry Talks Relationship With XXXTentacion, New Album 'TA13OO' + More". YouTube. Retrieved 22 October 2018.
- Sherburne, Philip; Soderberg, Brandon (November 2013). "5 Best New Artists for November '13 – Denzel Curry". Spin.
- Vogt, Nick (July 5, 2012). "King Of The Mischievous South: A Bloglin Interview w/ Denzel Curry". Mishka NYC.
- Drake, David (April 5, 2014). "Who Is Denzel Curry? The Florida Rapper, More Than the Sum of His Influences, is Poised to Break Big". Complex.
- Castro, Lee (September 6, 2013). "Denzel Curry on SpaceGhostPurrp and Raider Klan: "He Didn't Kick Me Out; I Chose to Leave"". The Village Voice.
- "Denzel Curry – Nostalgic 64". DJBooth.net. Archived from the original on 2015-10-27. Retrieved 2017-04-14.
- Soderberg, Brandon (May 15, 2014). "Stream Deniro Farrar's Confessional 'Rebirth' EP – Self-declared cult rapper's latest features Lunice and Denzel Curry". Spin.
- "Dillon Cooper – X:XX". HotNewHipHop.
- "Denzel Curry Rereleases 'Imperial' With Two New Songs - XXL". Xxlmag.com. Retrieved 2017-06-25.
- "Denzel Curry's '13' EP Now Available to Purchase - XXL". Xxlmag.com. Retrieved 2017-06-25.
- "Denzel Curry Shows His Range on New "Skywalker" Single". PigeonsandPlanes. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
- "Denzel Curry Re-Releases '32 Zel' EP With Juicy J Collab - XXL". XXL Mag. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
- "ASAP Ferg Teams With Denzel Curry and IDK on New Song "Kristi YamaGucci"". PigeonsandPlanes. Retrieved 2018-03-16.
- "Watch ASAP Ferg Bring Out Denzel Curry, IDK for Insane "Kristi YamaGucci" Performance". PigeonsandPlanes. Retrieved 2018-03-16.
- "Denzel Curry and IDK Tag Team Bruising Track "Uh Huh"". PigeonsandPlanes. Retrieved 2018-03-16.
- "Denzel Curry Sounds the Alarm With Booming New Track "Sumo"". PigeonsandPlanes. Retrieved 2018-04-06.
- Langford, Jackson. "The Entire World Is Losing It Over Denzel Curry's Like A Version". musicfeeds.com.au. Retrieved 17 February 2019.
- Espinoza, Joshua. "Denzel Curry Announces 'ZUU' Album, Drops New Single "Speedboat"". Complex. Retrieved May 22, 2019.
- Breihan, Tom. "Watch Denzel Curry Make His TV Debut & Show Off His New Haircut On Fallon". Stereogum. Retrieved July 16, 2019.
- Denzel Curry (January 8, 2020). "DENZEL CURRY - 13LOOD 1N + 13LOOD OUT MIXX (FT. GHOSTEMANE, ZILLAKAMI, XAVIER WULF, & AK)". YouTube. Retrieved January 8, 2020.
- Strauss, Matthew (2020-02-07). "Denzel Curry and Kenny Beats Drop New Album UNLOCKED". Pitchfork. Retrieved 2020-02-07.
- "Denzel Curry Opens Up About His Brother's Death in 'Knotty Head' Documentary - XXL". XXL Mag. Retrieved 2018-09-08.