2Rare – 2023 XXL Freshman
- GOV'T NAME: Naseem Rafeeq Young
- AGE: 22
- REPPIN': Philadelphia
- TWITTER: @2Raree
- INSTAGRAM: @2raree
- TIKTOK: @2raree
- NOTABLE RELEASES: Songs: “Q-Pid” with Lil Durk, “Rare’s Room,��� “Beat It” with Brock and Bril featuring JMoney; Guest Appearances: NLE Choppa’s “Do It Again,” French Montana’s “Ratataaaaa,” Zai1k’s “Dump It Dummy”
- LABEL: Second Estate/Warner
- CURRENTLY WORKING ON: Debut project, Truth or Rare, dropping this summer.
- WHO ELSE SHOULD BE PART OF THIS YEAR'S CLASS:
“Ice Spice. I feel that [would’ve been] another viral moment for her. I like Skilla Baby’s energy. He’s kind of a little bit different. A lot of drill rappers and people who be rapping on uptempo beats, they be having the same flows and stuff. He gets creative with it and he’s funny.
I like Destroy Loney’s creativity. I like that he’s creative and that’s what I’m really a fan of, because that’s what I do my damn self.”
- INFLUENCED BY: “Coming up, it was DaBaby, Chris Brown and it was like Drake and Lil Wayne. Wayne for his metaphors, Drake for his versatility and DaBaby for his creativity. Lil Durk always reminds me, ‘Bro, you got the world, you got the youth, you got the kids, you got the influence.’ So, no matter what you do that’s different from everybody else, keep doing it.”
- AS A FRESHMAN IN HIGH SCHOOL:
“I was late to school. My school was super damn far. I was a good student. I was an average student. I ain’t going to say I was a genius in school, you feel me? Because I ain’t really like doing my homework, but I always made sure I got it done. I used to play football. That was my whole drive right there for me, playing football. I played receiver, safety and kick return.
I always got along [with people]. I ain’t going to lie, that’s one thing about me. Everybody, not even on no cocky s**t, but everybody always could gravitate to me. Whether it’s because I’m funny, whether it’s because I got swag, whether it’s because I get girls. I ain’t a person that’s going to try to pick a fight or be loud all the time. I’m just cool.”
“Mel Carter from my label, Second Estate Records, told me [I made the 2023 XXL Freshman class]. The rest of that day, I went out, you feel me? I started doing a lot of s**t, but I started thinking like, Yo, I got to chill, so I can make it here. I can’t do nothing too wild that’s going to have me absent this day. No s**t that’s going to have me end up in jail before this day come. I can’t do nothing that’s going to f**k this opportunity up. I just been happy, for real, because it’s like one of the real moments I’ve been waiting for, been watching it for years. To finally be a part of it, it’s like, Damn, Rare, you doing your thing.
I feel like, for one, it solidifies you as a hot artist. A lot of people say that they hot, but XXL give you that extra stamp. The streets might say you hot, the kids might say you hot, your mom might say you hot, but XXL cosigning you is big to me. I’m really just started to take off. I ain’t dropped no project yet. I feel like everybody here dropped projects already. So, I feel like that’s a big one. I’m going to have more eyes when it’s time to drop my first project thanks to you all. I feel like that’s wild for real, for real.
I got some s**t up my sleeve for the cypher. I think I might dance and s**t. I’m just going to have that viral moment. I want to have that viral moment, some different s**t that nobody ever did before. That’s all I’m trying to do. I’m trying to make history every time.”
Watch 2Rare's 2023 XXL Freshman Freestyle
2Rare has been flexing his melody-driven rhymes and fun dance moves with one goal in mind: success. His fan base, affectionately dubbed Rare Steppas by the 22-year-old rapper, immediately gravitates to 2Rare's daily TikTok videos of him dancing as well as his music, like turnt-up club anthems such as 2022's "Q-Pid" with Lil Durk and this year's viral track "Rare's Room." While it may seem like all fun and games for this Philadelphia native, 2Rare flips the script on all that with his 2023 XXL Freshman freestyle.
He leaves the celebratory-filled party vibes that tend to be all over many of his tracks behind, and instead, 2Rare gets down to business here. Don't let the pronounced white hairline take away from the fact 2Rare makes it abundantly clear in his Freshman freestyle that when it comes to bars, flows and any potential opps, he's to be taken very seriously. The freestyle, which was recorded during the 2023 XXL Freshman cover shoot in May, also found its way into a hyped-up YouTube session with On The Radar Radio that same month where Rare was joined by his fellow 2Humpy crew cohorts, Brock, Bril, Raud and JMoney.
"Red beam on his eye like the dog from Target," 2Rare raps before referencing his current XXL Freshman status. "Double X-L, I fight the largest/Been sh***in' on n***as and breakin' them toilets/If we all chasin' this money, I’m runnin' the farthest."
From there, 2Rare's cadence changes as he dances between melodic vocals and slick wordplay over double-time compound syllables. The overall message remains the same: Rare is going to talk his talk regardless of what anyone thinks.
"So sick of these n***as in my business, don't got LLCs," 2Rare spits before showing off his lyrical prowess through the fact that he knows his ABCs. "I don’t give a F, b***h, ’cause I'm a G/I got keys with me, might as well keep it P/This a matte black glock in a Maybach truck, they call police, I'll flee the scenes."
Then, the rhymer puts the punchlines to work all the while using his ever-animated body language to help steer the path.
"Like that fragrance, I'll spray somethin'," 2Rare continues. "N***as try to glaze me just like donuts, in her p***y I might Dunkin/These n***as my kids, my sons/I been carrying this s**t for nine months, what the f**k, is you dumb?"
As 2Rare gears up to drop his debut project, which is scheduled to arrive this summer, the leader of the Rare Steppas looks to capitalize on the undeniable momentum he's been rolling with throughout the past year. Tracks like NLE Choppa's "Do It Again," which landed Rare his first placement on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in early 2023, have catapulted the rising artist to the forefront of the current wave of Jersey and Philly club-inspired hip-hop. At the same time, 2Rare's consistent social media presence has earned him nearly half a billion views on TikTok alone, solidifying the "One of One" artist's influence in hip-hop.
Peep 2Rare's hard-hitting XXL Freshman freestyle in the video below.
Watch 2Rare's 2023 XXL Freshman ABCs
2Rare understands the importance of being diverse and different more than most artists on the rise. From his signature white chalk hairline to his often-viral dance moves, the 2023 XXL Freshman prides himself on standing out in a crowd. On the strength of tracks like "Rare's Room" and his feature on NLE Choppa's "Do It Again," a guest appearance that landed 2Rare on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart for the first time earlier this year, the Philadelphia-bred rhymer is playing a key role in ushering in a whole wave of Jersey and Philly club-inspired hip-hop. Take a look at the guy behind the music as he 2Rare offers up some free game on what he views as the keys to success in his version of XXL's ABCs.
Kicking off the video on the humorous tip with the letters A and B, the 22-year-old jokester makes his affinity for a certain section of the female anatomy loud and clear. "A is for a*ses—peach emoji," 2Rare says with a big old smile. "B is for butts. That's a*ses."
While 2Rare's personality is showcased through this stream-of-consciousness exercise, the Northside Philly native shows out for his "hood" with the letter H and uses the letter O to shout-out his loved ones. "O is for outta pocket," he shares. "I get outta pocket about mines. My family, my mom, my brothers, you know?"
However, it's when R pops up that 2Rare comes through with some profound advice for aspiring artists while also explaining the basis of his rap name. "R is for rare," he affirms. "Gotta be rare, you gotta be diverse, you gotta be different. You can't be like these other people out here. That's the only way you gon' stand out. Listen to me, I'm telling you. I'm giving you game for free."
Watch 2Rare laugh it up and share some words of wisdom in the process in his ABCs video as part of the 2023 XXL Freshman Class below.