“King Von’s original ‘Crazy Story’ is the kind of thing hip-hop heads should crave: an immediate and distinct piece of cinematic rap that makes time for flirting and gangbanging all in one ferocious verse. The Chicago rapper details an attack on an opp that keeps you engrossed all the way to the very end” – The 405
“King Von’s incredibly vivid story-telling rhymes have propelled him to the forefront of Chicago drill rap.” – The FADER
“King Von excels in using his storytelling as a device to portray the struggle of growing up in Chicago.” – Pitchfork
Before King Von had even been rapping for six months, his two music video singles had earned him two million views. That’s because the 23-year-old signed to Lil Durk’s OTF Records makes songs without compromise or imitation. “Problems” and “War Wit Us” are represent heartbeat of Chicago’s roughest section, delivered with a raw intensity that rings authentic.
“I’m signed to the streets,” Von recently told The Breakfast Club alongside Durk whose mixtapes coined that phrase. Hailing from the notorious “O Block” recognized for its violence, the rapper, whose first name is DaVon, says that it was not until he saw the world recently that he had anything to compare that world to. In early 2018, it appeared that Von might never the outside again. He faced a life sentence for a murder charge. Innocent, Von took the case to trial and eventually won. Deliberation took years, causing anguish for his devoted mother and grandma.
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“I never had it in my mind that I was gonna rap. When you’re in there, you’re so far from the door, so far away from getting out that you are just focused on that. My big goal was just being free. There was no ‘you’ve got 8 months left’ awaiting trial. If found guilty, I was getting 100 years. I wasn’t thinking past just hoping to get out.” When he left the cell, his childhood friend Durk reached out with an opportunity and invited Von to get away from the violence, in Atlanta.
Durk’s label, Only The Family, embodies a deep sense of brotherhood. Like Durk, labelmates Booka600, OTF Ikey, and Doodie Lo knew Von long before the viral videos and hot tracks. “We all grew up together. Other people are brought together because of label stuff. We’ve been together; the music is just giving us the business. We’re just hanging with our friends and doing what we do,” says Von, who, despite his aggressive music, is chatty, humorous, and polite. He now permanently lives in the ATL while he tours with his team and tends to his family back home. Chicago’s storied Englewood section is where Von’s family remains and is the gruff backdrop of those two videos. “I’ve been booked since I was 16; I haven’t been out a whole year since 2010,” he admits. Although innocent of his most serious charges, the time out of the streets took away a piece of Von’s life but allowed him to see a bigger perspective. “That time is gone. I done messed up so much. So many people went and done this or accomplished that, and I’m still stuck where I was at 16.”
That kept Von from social media and cheap trends in music. He admits that he was unaware of The Breakfast Club until he arrived for the interview. That isolation also keeps his sound and style unadulterated and pure of trend-chasing. Despite newfound fame, he writes rhymes while taking long bus-rides through his new hometown for inspiration, soaking up the freedom he very nearly lost to a flawed criminal justice system. “Now that I’ve moved away and experienced other places and see how everything else is, I realize how messed up it is back home. But if you grew up there, how would you know? It’s regular. Now, every place that I go feels like a vacation.”
King Von is an integral part of OTF’s upcoming 2019 compilation. Releasing potent music, he is also crafting a solo debut. In the meantime, he values his freedom and hopes to give the same streets that he is forever bound to, a message that there is more out there for the taking.
King Von Shines Like a VVS 💎 in His Playful “No Flaws” Video
King Von Displays Storytelling and Versatility on Debut Mixtape Grandson Vol. 1
Forget ‘Star Wars’, King Von Drops the Most Anticipated Sequel of the Year with “Crazy Story Pt. 3”
King Von Dramatizes His Turbulent History in the Moving “What It’s Like” Video
King Von Announces Debut Mixtape ‘Grandson Vol. 1,’ Shares Hard-Hitting Drill Ballad “What It’s Like”
King Von & Lil Durk Stand Up For O-Block in the Gripping “Crazy Story 2.0” Video
OTF Endgame: King Von Invites Lil Durk For “Crazy Story 2.0,” the Sequel to Von’s Breakout Hit
You Can Run, But You Can’t Hide From King Von and JusBlow600
King Von Shares the FADER-Premiered “Cousins” ft. JusBlow 600
OTF Signee King Von Dramatizes a “Crazy Story” in a Charismatic Video
Lil Durk Announces Only The Family Involved Vol. 2 Label Mixtape, Headlined by Chicago Newcomer King Von