Born Tyree Cinque Simmons in Philadelphia in 1978, DJ Drama assumed his street name in the mid-'90s. After relocating to Georgia to attend Clark University, Drama linked up with producer DJ Don Cannon to form Aphilliates Music Group, releasing neo-soul mixtapes with the title Automatic Relaxation. Drama's next series, Gangsta Grillz, boasted a tougher, street-level sound and featured a number of prominent hosts (T.I., Young Jeezy, Lil Wayne). In 2007, police raided Aphilliates' headquarters and arrested both Drama and Don Cannon on allegations of racketeering. That same year, Drama released his debut major-label collection, Gangsta Grillz: The Album, which featured OutKast and Pharrell, and continued undaunted with subsequent collections.
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