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will.i.am

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Los Angeles, United States (1991 – present)

William James Adams Jr. (born March 15, 1975), better known as will.i.am, is an American and musician and founding member of the Black Eyed Peas. Adams is of Jamaican descent and has rapped since his teenage years. Along with co-writing many of the Peas’ hit songs, he’s also had a solo career featuring multiple top 20 hit singles as well as collaborations with various artists such as Mick Jagger and Britney Spears among many others.

When William was sixteen years old, he started rapping in late 1991 under the name “Will-1X” after being discovered by Compton rapper and former N.W.A. leader Eazy-E and signed a deal to Eazy’s Ruthless Records. will.i.am’s first rap song was “Merry Muthafuckin’ Xmas” from Eazy-E’s 1992 EP 5150: Home 4 tha Sick. Shortly after Eazy-E’s death in 1995, Will left Ruthless to start a group that would later be called the Black Eyed Peas with fellow rappers Taboo and apl.de.ap.

After the addition of Fergie, the group shot into mainstream pop consciousness with a set of hit singles in the mid-00s, popularity that continues to this day. The Black Eyed Peas’ producer is Sergio Mendes, an internationally successful Brazilian musician and jazz aficionado. In September 2007, will.i.am took a major step into a solo career identity by joining with his record label, Universal Music Group (UMG), on a pilot scheme to reward certain file-sharing with cash incentives, including will.i.am tracks from his then upcoming release Songs About Girls.

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