Clifford Joseph Harris Jr, better known by his stage names T.I and Tip is an American rapper, record producer, and actor. With his superb talent and skills, T.I has gained popularity for himself through his growing career in the music industry; he has become one of the most prominent Southern rappers.
T.I Early Life and Career
T.I was born as Clifford Joseph Harris Jr. on September 25, 1980, in Atlanta Georgia. Harris who began rapping at an early age of eight attended Douglass High School.
As a teenager, he lived a street life, dealing in drugs and later dropped out of school. His drug addiction often got him into trouble such that by the time he was 14, he had already been to jail severally.
T.I’s rapping talents were soon noticed and by age nineteen, he was signed to LaFace Records, a subsidiary of Arista Records. During his childhood, T.I was originally known by the nickname T.I.P. but he later dropped the ‘P’ in order not to be mistaken for fellow Arista Records artist, Q-Tip.
After his debut album, I’m Serious released in 2001 failed to make waves, the young rapper left the label. Shortly after, T.I started his own record label Grand Hustle Records. Under his new label, T.I produced an underground CD In Da Streets which sold no less than 20,000 copies. But he got more attention in the rap world following his collaboration with Bone Crusher in the hit single, Never Scared.
Nonetheless, T.I’s major claim to fame was in August 2003, after he joined Atlantic Records to release his sophomore studio album Trap Muzik which was a big hit. Not only did the album rank fourth in the Billboard Hot 200 chart and second on the Billboard Top R&B Hip-Hop chart, it also earned a platinum certification from RIAA. The album’s success went on to establish T.I as one of the most prominent Southern rappers.
His third album Urban Legend released in 2004 which featured creative collaborations with other prominent rappers such as B.G., Nelly, Lil Wayne, and Mannie Fresh was even a bigger hit. The album peaked seventh on the Billboard 200 in the first week of release and topped the Billboard Top R&B Hip-Hop. T.I’s Urban Legend further made history by becoming the fastest-selling album by a Southern artist with over 1.3 million copies sold in the U.S. It was also certified double Platinum.
Once labeled ‘the Jay-Z of the South’, T.I consistently maintained a presence in the music industry. His subsequent projects spent more time topping charts. They include his fourth album King released in 2006, which debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 chart; his fifth studio album T.I. vs. T.I.P (2007) and the sixth, Paper Trail (2008) which equally debuted at number one on the Billboard 200.
That’s not all, T.I’s seventh album, No Mercy (2010) debuted at number four on the US Billboard 200 chart. The eight album Trouble Man: Heavy Is the Head was released in 2011 and his ninth, Paperwork in 2014. Paperwork was produced under the Columbia label by Pharrell Williams. The rap star’s tenth album – The Dime Trap – came the next year (2015).
With ten studio albums and five platinum-certified albums, T.I’s dedication and efforts in the industry have earned him three Grammy Awards for Best Rap Solo Performance, Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group and Best Rap/Sung Collaboration. He is also a recipient of other prestigious awards.
Meanwhile, T.I debuted his acting career in 2006 with the Warner Bros movie ATL. The next year, he appeared in the movie American Gangster. His other movie credits include Ant-Man, Takers, Get Hard and Identity Thief. He also co-starred in the series T.I. and Tiny: The Family Hustle and T.I.’s Road to Redemption. T.I is also an author of two books, Power and Beauty and Trouble and Triumph.
Facts About T.I’s Parents, Wife, and Children
Clifford Joseph Harris Jr’s parents are Violeta Morgan and Clifford Harris. He was raised in Atlanta by his grandmother while his parents lived in New York. T.I later lost his father to Alzheimer’s disease.
T.I is married to Tameka ‘Tiny’ Cottle, a former Xscape member. After courting for over 8 years, the couple tied the knot on July 30, 2010, in Miami Beach, Florida. The union produced three children, two sons – Clifford “King” Joseph Harris III, and Major Philant Harris as well as a daughter Heiress Diana. Apart from the kids they had together, Tiny has a daughter named Zonnique Jailee Pullins from her previous relationship with Zonnie Zebo Pullins.
The rapper, on the other hand, has four children from previous relationships. Two sons, Messiah Ya’ Majesty Harris and Domani Uriah Harris from ex-wife, Lashon Dixon and a daughter, Deyjah Imani Harris from singer Ms. Niko.
After six years of marriage, Tameka filed for a divorce in 2016 citing “irreconcilable differences”. However, reports revealed that the couple is trying to rekindle their romance and have kept the divorce on hold. The two who have since been spotted together in public on multiple occasions have, however, been doing their very best to co-parent their children. T.I and Tiny documented and shared their family life with their fans on the hit VH1 series T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle, which debuted in December 2011.
Does He Have A Girlfriend?
It is believed that the rapper and his wife are hard at work to strengthen their union. While he hasn’t been romantically linked to other partners since it emerged that his wife is leaving him, T.I has had quite an interesting list of past relationships with women including, Lashon Dixon (from 1995 – 2001), Ranniqua (from 1999 – 2001), Nicole Alexander (from 2006 – 2010), Blac Chyna (from 2009 – 2010), Jasmin Jaye (2013 – 2014), Analicia Chaves (2016) and Bernice Burgos (2016).
Controversies and Body Measurements
Harris who calls himself the ‘king of the South’, is also known for getting into legal trouble. Besides drug addictions and having feuds with fellow rappers, Harris has served two county jail terms. In fact, two months after their wedding, T.I and Tameka were arrested in Los Angeles on drug-related charges. Though his drug charges were later dropped, the rapper was consequently sentenced to 11 months in prison for violating the terms of his probation.
The entertainer has an athletic build and stands at an average height of 5 ft 8 inches (176 cm). He weighs 152 lb (69 kg) and, his body measurements are:
Chest – 39 inches
Arms / Biceps – 13.5 inches
Waist – 33 inches.