6ix9ine in June 2018
May 8, 1996
New York City, New York, United States
Daniel Hernandez (born May 8, 1996), known professionally as 6ix9ine (pronounced "six nine") or Tekashi69, is an American rapper. He is known for his unconventional appearance, controversial behavior and brute-force screaming technique in some of his songs.
Hernandez rose to fame in late 2017 with the release of his debut single "Gummo". The song peaked at number 12 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and was certified platinum by the RIAA. In early 2018, Hernandez released his debut mixtape, Day69, which debuted at number four on the Billboard 200 album chart. He earned his first top-ten entry on the Hot 100 with "Fefe", featuring Nicki Minaj and Murda Beatz, which peaked at number three.
Daniel Hernandez was born on May 8, 1996 in Bushwick, Brooklyn to a Mexican mother (from Atlixco) and a Puerto Rican father. He was raised by both his mother and father until the age of thirteen and grew up alongside his brother.
Hernandez was expelled from school in 8th grade, and did not return. In 2009, his father was murdered, which led to Hernandez working various jobs and selling marijuana in order to help his mother financially.
Hernandez began releasing rap songs in 2014. Over the next three years, he released multiple tracks and videos with titles such as "Scumlife", "Yokai", and "Hellsing Station", drawing attention due to his aggressive rapping style and the use of anime as music video visuals. Many of his early songs were released by FCK THEM, a music label based in Slovakia. Gathering fame as an internet meme for his rainbow-dyed hair and rainbow-plated grills, he eventually became an associate of fellow New York rapper ZillaKami who later began a feud with the rapper following Hernandez allegedly stealing instrumentals and songs they had made together.
The release of the song "POLES1469" in April 2017, which featured Hernandez alongside rising Ohio sing-rapper Trippie Redd, was the first song performed by Hernandez to receive significant views on YouTube.
Hernandez rose to prominence on social media due to a July 2017 Instagram post that went viral on both Reddit and Twitter, where Hernandez's eccentric appearance (rainbow-dyed hair, a rainbow grill, and multiple versions of the number 69 tattooed on his body) turned him into an internet meme.
Hernandez's commercial debut single "Gummo" was released on November 10, 2017 and eventually peaked at number 12 on the US Billboard Hot 100. It was certified platinum by the RIAA on March 5, 2018. His next single "Kooda" debuted at 61 on the Hot 100 the week of December 23, 2017. On January 14, 2018, Hernandez released his third single "Keke" with Fetty Wap and A Boogie wit da Hoodie.
Shortly afterwards, Hernandez announced his debut mixtape, Day69. The mixtape was released on February 23, 2018, and debuted at number four on the Billboard 200 album chart with 55,000 album-equivalent units, of which 20,000 were pure sales. According to Jon Caramanica of The New York Times, the tape was an outgrowth of the "SoundCloud rap explosion", and was notable for its willingness to deviate from hip-hop's prevailing sound. After the release of Day69, two songs from the album, "Billy" and "Rondo" both debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 with "Billy" peaking at number 50 and "Rondo" at number 73.
In April 2018, Hernandez released the song "Gotti", a remix of a previous feature he did for artist Packman titled "Got it, Got it", the song had a music video released on April 16, 2018 which involved Hernandez donating bundles of $100 notes to poor citizens in the Dominican Republic. The song was added to Day69 as a deluxe song and debuted at number 99 on the Billboard Hot 100 before dropping off the following week, making it his sixth consecutive Hot 100 entry.
Hernandez stirred up controversy in May 2018 when he was involved in a shooting with the entourage of fellow New York rapper Casanova as part of a feud; this led to Hernandez losing a five million dollar headphone deal and being banned from the Barclays Center. Following the shooting, Hernandez went silent in terms of releasing music or teasing it before releasing "Tati" featuring DJ Spinking in June, which debuted at number 43 on the Billboard Hot 100.
On a now-deleted Instagram video, Tekashi said that he would like to drop a new mixtape in late October 2018. Expected songs could feature Lil Baby. He released the song "Aulos Reloaded" with French house DJ Vladimir Cauchemar.
In October 2015, Hernandez pled guilty to one felony count of use of a child in a sexual performance. Hernandez was charged with three counts of the offense after a February 2015 incident where he had sexual contact with a 13-year-old girl and later distributed videos of the incident online. Three videos are described in the criminal complaint against Hernandez. In the first video, "the child engages in oral sexual intercourse with the separately charged defendant Taquan Anderson, while the defendant, Daniel Hernandez, stands behind the child making a thrusting motion with his pelvis and smacking her on her buttocks. The child is nude in the video." The other videos show the child sitting on the lap of Hernandez while her breasts are groped by Anderson, and later sitting naked across the laps of Anderson and Hernandez.
In a November 2017 interview, Hernandez claimed to have "no sexual contact" with the girl and denied knowing she was a minor. Hernandez also claimed to be seventeen at the time of the incident, although the birth date listed in the complaint against him and in his statement to the police shows he was eighteen at the time.
Under his plea deal, Hernandez must obtain his GED, refrain from posting sexually explicit or violent images of women or children to social media, and not commit another crime for two years, among other injunctions. If met, the plea deal would give Hernandez three years probation and he would not have to register as a sex offender; if not, Hernandez could face up to three years in prison. In a January 2018 court hearing, it was revealed that Hernandez had failed his GED test, but had his sentencing adjourned until April 10, 2018. The court date was later postponed, reportedly because the court did not have a copy of Hernandez's GED. Prior to his sexual misconduct charges, Hernandez served jail time as a minor for assault and the sale of heroin.
Throughout mid-2018, Hernandez has been involved in feuds with a number of Chicago rappers including Chief Keef and Lil Reese. On June 2, 2018, Chief Keef was fired upon outside the W Hotel in New York City but was not hit; no injuries resulted from the incident. Due to the ongoing feud, Hernandez was confirmed to be under investigation by the New York Police Department for possible involvement with the incident, despite being in Los Angeles at the time of the shooting.
In the early morning hours of July 22, 2018, Hernandez was kidnapped, beaten, and robbed by three unknown assailants in Brooklyn. He had finished shooting the music video for "FEFE" (featuring Nicki Minaj and Murda Beatz) when three armed assailants grabbed Hernandez outside of his home and pistol whipped him. The robbers eventually took over $750,000 in custom jewelry and approximately $35,000 in cash. Hernandez escaped from their vehicle and summoned police help via a stranger. He was taken to the hospital.
Due to his continuing legal problems in light of his plea bargain, the Manhattan district attorney's office announced Hernandez could face up to three years in prison and possible sex offender registration for his 2015 case. Sentencing is scheduled to take place on October 26, 2018.