By Thomas Vo ’25
Are you a hip-hop fan? Are you familiar with rap? Many new artists with great potential are trying to promote and expose their hard work to public attention every day. One of the names that ring out the most is the Atlanta-originated American rapper J.I.D. Who is this artist? Let’s find out.
Destin Choice Route, professionally known as J.I.D, was born on October 31, 1990. His parents, Carl Louis Route JR. and Kathy Jean Route, gave birth to the future great in the industry as the youngest of seven siblings. For him, being the youngest of his siblings is somewhat “tough.” The stage name, J.I.D, was originally the nickname his grandmother gave him based on his “jittery” behavior. Nonetheless, Route was a former division I football player before initiating his rap career The talented J.I.D started playing football as a defensive back at Stephenson High School. He earned a scholarship to play NCAA Division I football at Hampton University, where he was a redshirt his first year, then played two seasons before he was ejected from the team.
In “2007”, a song that was not officially released in the album “The Forever Story”, he relived how he developed his rapping in his dormitory room ‘freestyling’ over his friend’s mixed beats. J.I.D had discovered his talent, yet he chose to keep up with his football career. J. Cole, a Dreamville’s rapper (Dreamville: a hip hop record label that publishes and promotes rap music), recognized the hidden talents that J.I.D had not yet shown and decided to sign him to the label. Thus, J.I.D signed with Dreamville Records and Interscope Records, and released his official debut single, “Never.” In 2021, he released the single “Enemy” with pop rock band Imagine Dragons, which became his highest charting and most popular single, peaking at number 5 on the Billboard Hot 100. His appearance on “Enemy” gained him attention to his other crafts as well as promoting him. Recently, the East Atlanta rapper J.I.D released his new album, “The Forever Story,” deemed as the third album in his career received widespread acclaim from critics and became his highest-charting album peaking at number 12 on the Billboard 200. The rise of this star rapper is becoming more palpable to people as many praised him for his excellent work rather than knowing him through a collaboration with “Imagine Dragons.”
Ultimately, despite the fact that J.I.D is now 30 years old, he has got more to prove on his path to success. If you have time to listen to music, you should definitely try some of J.I.D’s songs on all platforms.