You’ve probably heard a track or two from French Montana.
He’s got the banger “Pop That” and is featured on some premium bops like “Stay Schemin'” by Rick Ross, Chris Brown’s “Loyal” and the new summer cut, “All the Way Up” alongside New York MCs Fat Joe and Remy Ma.
Before he hits the stage with Puff Daddy and the Family at ESSENCE Festival 2016, here are 5 facts to know about the rapper.
He’s not actually French:
French Montana is not a man from France but he was born in Rabat, Morocco. He and his family migrated to the U.S. when he was 13. Not only does he know how to speak Arabic, which is his native tongue, but he does indeed, speak French.
He has a pet monkey:
A well known animal lover, French has a pet monkey named Julius. This monkey is living the dream.
Just Announced! Lil’ Kim, Mase and French Montana to Join Puff Daddy for Epic ESSENCE Fest Finale
He’s a father:
Featured on the cover of French’s debut album Excuse My French is his son! French is a proud papa and has said that his offspring is his best friend. He told Complex in 2012 that fatherhood is a role he cherishes. “I love it, man. The most beautiful thing is making him smile. They don’t know nothing when they that small, you just want to help them.”
He’s a victim of gun violence:
The rapper knows all too well what it’s like to be held up at gun point. In an 2013 interview with Hip Hop Wired, French recalls the fateful night he was shot in the back of the head and was fortunately spared his life. “So I come out the studio, I’m walking like this. All I see is just two ni–as..two hammers [guns], at my head,” remembered French. “As soon as everybody started moving in on me, everybody ran. So I’m the only one stuck. I’m stuck, feel me? I got shot [in the] back of my head. Somebody died back there.”
He’s a ladies’ man:
French has been rumored to some of the baddest women in the game. It’s been said that he and female MC Trina were once a fling and as of late, he and actress Sanaa Lathan have been linked together but the rapper says that the two are just good friends.
Buy your tickets to the 2016 ESSENCE Festival now and make sure to check back for more updates.