DUMMY BOY By 6ix9ine Slaps, but Can’t Win Behind Its Controversial Orchestrator

Tej Sheth, Reporter

Close your eyes. Imagine a person who has just barely surpassed the minimum height to go down the big slide at the amusement park, covered in 100 tattoos of the number ‘69’ on various places of his body including his face, and luscious Rapunzel-esque rainbow colored hair cascading around his disproportionately large ears. This description is not of my little cousin’s Xbox avatar, but of a real human being—Teka$hi 6ix9ine—a walking caricature whose semblance could very well lead him to future appearances in elementary schools’ “Don’t Do Drugs” programs.

6ix9ine has been pushing his ego for some time, attempting to bolster his credibility through gang participation and crazy antics. His breakout song, “Gummo”, gained traction at the end of 2017 and is a short piece of particularly unthoughtfully composed music that has a vocal delivery of unintelligible screaming. It has since gone Certified Platinum.

Once 6ix9ine started to build a platform for himself, he kept himself in the headlines constantly, almost always depicted in a negative light. All of the rap beefs, gang representation, and violent threats should have turned people away from him for immaturely glorifying violence purely for attention. But that is what is so peculiar about 6ix9ine.


6ix9ine has seemed unscathed to the public eye despite his ongoing court case, with him pleading guilty to doing a sexual act with a 13-year-old. Whether you know him by 6ix9ine or Daniel Hernandez, his real name, he is a fundamentally troubled man who will stop at nothing for fame.

On November 18, 2018, 6ix9ine’s antics finally caught up with him. He and members of the Nine Trey Gangsta Gang, his management team, were incarcerated. Two days before, 6ix9ine had publicly distanced himself from them.

6ix9ine’s first 12 songs charted on the Billboard Top 100. Hoping to continue this unprecedented hot streak, 6ix9ine planned to release an album on November 23rd. While he sat in jail facing Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) charges that would hand him at least a mandatory minimum of 32 years in jail, with the possibility of a life sentence, his album, Dummy Boy, was leaked. A week later, he charted the Number 1 album in the country.

I have always been unwilling to support 6ix9ine, but when his album came out, I couldn’t help but take a listen myself. Aside from the legal drama, several big-name acts were recruited for this album, willingly co-signed him and joined the #Free6ix9ine movement. Among them are Nicki Minaj, Kanye West, Tory Lanez, Lil Baby, Gunna, and A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie. The star-studded feature list drew me in. Although I expected to be repulsed by his work, merely because of his name, I didn’t find myself pressing skip at all. Most of the songs clock in just over two minutes.

However, 6ix9ine’s parts were the worst part of every track. He was outshone by all the other artists who undoubtedly carried the project. Though the short runtimes kept me engaged, they exhibited his limitations. The stand-out cuts from the album have been the least 6ix9ine flavored style.

While songs like TIC TOC, KIKA, and MALA, definitely slap hard and will make waves, the songs are each formulaic approaches that cash in on current industry trends. A lot of teenagers will consume his album because it has a lot of hit songs and is surprisingly listenable in various settings.

The question lies in how much staying power it will have, with most people, myself included, projecting it to be forgotten in a month. 6ix9ine, the egotistical self-embracing controversial figure, who has decided to rap for relevance sake, could see the end of his short-lived fame.

It is interesting, and a bit scary, that a “troll” with heinous legal issues and little musical ability, has garnered the attention and support of so many. With 6ix9ine likely to go silent for a while, we could be permanently saying goodbye to the man who made his own album cover an animated version of himself peeing rainbow urine while deviously grinning to the audience and who simultaneously took a chokehold on the hip hop genre by being a mockery of a serious artist. The questions arise: will we remember 6ix9ine? Will his art last? Should we even care?