Let’s talk about Sleepy Hallow, not the dutch folklore about ghosts, but rather the next big rapper from overseas. Despite being born in Jamaica in 1999, when he immigrated to Brooklyn, young Tegan Joshua Anthony Chambers quickly adopted American rap culture, taking influence from popular rap names such as 50 Cent and Kendrick Lamar.
Sleepy started making his own music as an early teen. In high school he had a 3.0 average GPA until getting wrapped up in marijuana possession charges during his sophomore year. After this run in with the law, Sleepy joined a gang with his close friend, another rapper known as Sheff G. Sleepy graduated high school with a 2.2 GPA, leaving school behind him. By 2017, Both Sleepy and Sheff G had signed with a record label. Sleepy’s music at this time had a very East Coast drill vibe to it, most comparable to other East Coast artists such as Pop Smoke or Fivio Forigen. In 2019, he debuted with Don’t Sleep his first official mixtape followed by his second mixtape Sleepy for President in early 2020. The release of his second mixtape marked the beginning of his spotlight with a hit song Deep End Freestyle which hit the top 100 billboard charts with over 85 million streams.
More recently his music has gained a lot of publicity from the social media platform Tik Tok in June this year with his newest album release Still Sleep? This album has a new take on his earlier music with better music samples and features while maintaining the same vocals that makes him unique; however, he is now rapping on more low-fi, laid back beats. This unique music style has attracted many students such as Gabe Zafuto (12): “His songs never get old,” he says. “He samples so many different beats and sounds and all of his songs are good. I could shuffle play all of his albums and there’s not a single song I would skip.” Like Gabe, there are many people out there who feel the same way considering Sleepy has over 14 million monthly listeners. Despite his popularity among his fans, he unfortunately did not make the 2021 XXL freshman cypher list (a yearly list consisting of 11 fan voted up and coming rappers), and because of this Sleepy has missed out on a lot of publicity that his following felt as though he deserved. Go give him a listen and then ask yourself, does he deserve to be the next big rap artist?