Schoolboy Q represents a few people who are able to get out of the dark side and channel his energy on something more productive. Born Quincy Matthew Hanley on October 26, 1986, he grew up in a broken home after his parents split. He turned into a troublemaker, skipping classes, joining gang, and selling drugs.
"I went to West L.A. college, I went to Southwest college, LACC, and Glendale. I didn't really get the school like that. I would go to practice and go home. I wasn't really paying attention in class. I was just in there making sure I did enough work so I could still be eligible. I wasn't really trying to pass the class," he said, adding that his initial passion was not music, but football.
But before college, he was a nerd student and that's how he got his nickname. "When I was in school, all the homies called me Schoolboy. I wore glasses and I had a 3.3 in high school," he explained. "My name's Quincy, so I just stick to Schoolboy Q."
He then joined a street gang and started selling drugs. "I was a Hoover Crip," he recalled. "My homies were doing it and I wanted to do it. I can't really explain that. I didn't get into it with another hood or anything like that. I was just following the leader."
He wrote his first verses when he was a teen, but didn't do it seriously until he was 21 after realizing that music allowed "you .. to let your aggression out, so you got to get in the booth and let it out." He said, "I wrote my first verse when I was 16. I wasn't really rapping, but you know everybody wrote a verse before. I wrote the verse but I wasn't really f**king with it."
"I was just lost; I didn't know what I wanted to do. I was just trying to do something. Then I found music and it was just over after that. I made my first little bit of money doing music, after that I wanted to get used to doing it, and I kept rapping. Then it became something that I had to do."
His first debut album, "Setbacks", came in 2011, and he addressed his experiences on the street. "The concept behind Setbacks was [to talk about] all the s**t that's the reason why I can't rap. The reason I can't accomplish what I want to accomplish is because I'm doing all this dumb s**t," he said.
The follow-up, "Habits & Contradictions", arrived the next year. It moved up to iTunes Top 10 Albums chart despite lack of marketing and advertising. On Billboard charts, it peaked at No. 3 on Hotseekers, No. 16 on Top Rap Albums, No. 17 on Independent Albums, and No. 25 on R&B/Hip-Hop Albums.
Two years in the making, his third album, "Oxymoron", was released February 25, 2014. The effort was produced by top-notch musicians like Pharrell Williams, Mike Will Made It, and Tyler, the Creator among others. It peaked at No. 1 on Hot 200 and its single "Man of the Year" climbed up to No. 62, giving him his highest-charting record.
In February 2016, Schoolboy Q's label TDE announced that his fourth album would arrive before the summer. The rapper then released "Groovy Tony" as the new project's first single in early April. Later that month, he revealed that the LP would be called "Blank Face LP" and he also shared a cover art that he later confirmed was fake. He unveiled the official artwork in June.
Marking Schoolboy Q's second major-label album, it's set for release on July 8. To support it, he has announced the "Groovy Tony Pit Stops" which is an eight-city tour that will begin in San Francisco on July 9 and conclude on July 17 in Houston.