If you let him tell it, Soulja Boy was the first person to walk on Earth. The Southern-bred rapper is no stranger to making bold claims and it’s now become his brand. In the last few years alone, he’s given himself credit for numerous things like inventing FaceTime, being the first rapper to take a selfie, starting the rap trend of spelling things out with money and being the first spitter on Twitter. These claims are seen by most as outlandish, but funny enough, Soulja does have his fair share of "first" receipts.
Hate it or love it, Soulja Boy is one of the most influential rappers in the game. When his Billboard Hot 100 No. 1-charting song “Crank That” came out in 2007—equipped with a dance craze that revolutionized the game and made way for others like the Reject, Cat Daddy, Dougie and Shmoney Dance—the infinite reach of the internet was much smaller. YouTube was also super fresh, as it launched just a couple years before the song's release. Once the track caught fire, “Crank That” videos were literally everywhere online, as were spin-offs that had people cranking that Batman, Superman and Spongebob. So, was he the first rapper to go viral and "break" YouTube? It’s hard to argue against that.
There are some materialistic things that Soulja Boy has claimed that have yet to be actually refuted as well. G-Shock watches have stood as one of the game’s most trendy and more affordable watches, way before Rolexes and Richard Milles made noise. Back in 2021, Kid Cudi iced-out his G-Shock and the video of it went viral due to the nostalgia factor most likely than anything else. That moment gave Soulja inspiration to dig up his own archival footage that seemingly confirms that he first put ice on the same brand of watch back in 2010. If you can prove otherwise, please do, but as it currently stands, he's got that one.
Now, respectfully, this is Soulja Boy we’re talking about. For 15 years now, he’s been the master of creating headlines. Getting people to talk about him and his enthusiastic declarations is the norm. So, it’s safe to say that everything should be taken with a grain of salt. But here, XXL separates the facts from the cap. Below are multiple Soulja Boy claims that actually ring true. Check out Soulja Bou's
First Rapper to Go "Viral" on YouTube
A good chunk of artists in the rap game have earned record deals and fame off going viral on apps like Twitter, Instagram and TikTok. But before the world was addicted to scrolling, YouTube was a primary outlet for spreading content. Soulja Boy really does appear to be the first rapper to take advantage of that. His 2007 self-produced song “Crank That” and its accompanying video spawned over a dozen additional dance crazes. Hundreds of YouTube dance tutorials and performances followed, which were cross-pollinated across platforms and impossible to ignore. It’s not to say that artists haven’t similarly had a crazy amount of success prior to this point when it comes to trends, but back in 2007, the game was shifting from physical to digital and Soulja was for sure at the forefront of it all.
First Rapper to Own a Gaming Console
Soulja Boy is trying to give Sony and Microsoft a run for their money. To rival PlayStation and Xbox, Soulja launched his own video game consoles back in 2018. However, false advertising and unlicensed games would soon put a lid on that. Soulja sparked things back up in 2021 though, with a Game Boy look-alike called the TRDR Pocket, Soulja Boy Game edition. According to him, Google, Nintendo and Atari tried to do business with him. Still though, he's the only rapper to actually launch a system of his own.
First Rapper to Document a Trip to Icebox
Whenever rappers pull up to Atlanta, Icebox jewelry store is always on agenda. It's become second nature for artists nowadays to show off the expensive process of getting iced out. Not surprisingly, Soulja really might've been the first to flex and document his experience at hip-hop's go-to jewelry store. He first made the claim in May of 2021. A fan commented on his post with footage that proves so. One of the Icebox workers reportedly claims that T-Pain was the first artist to buy from the store. Some might even try to say that Pain isn't a rapper, but there's no video footage to cosign that. So as of now, that's another point for Soulja Boy.
First Rapper to Get a Verified Badge on Instagram
Soulja Boy started off his career by making history on YouTube. Instagram can apparently be added to that list as well. In 2021, Soulja went on IG live and announced that he was the first rapper to get a badge on his Instagram Live profile, which allowed people to donate funds to him. The badges were rolled out to selected creators for livestreams. Nothing available on the internet disputes these claims so it's hard to form an argument against it. Soulja assures that his swag is what earned him the privilege.
First Rapper to Get an Iced-Out G-Shock
Kid Cudi had the internet hype when he dropped pics of his iced-out G-Shock, which was a BAPE and Cudi collab released in 2021. If you didn’t live under a rock, you know that Cudi's watches used to have people in a chokehold years ago. Following Kid Cudi’s clip of the timepiece, Soulja Boy pulled up with receipts of the time he dropped drip on his own G-Shock. It appears that Soulja put the freeze around the nostalgic wristwear back in 2010, more than a decade before Cudi did it. Soulja strikes again.
First Rapper to Own a Star
Rappers run up enough commas to buy most things on the ground, but much less have assets that exist in the sky. Soulja Boy knows no limits though. Last year, he purchased his own star named Monoceros and posted the certificate on social media to verify his purchase. In his words, Soulja doesn’t need a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame if he has one in the air.
First Rapper to Get 1 Million Likes on a Tweet
Everything moves fast on Twitter. Viral moments change on the daily, so while something can gain big numbers early, it’s hard to sustain engagement. People that hit over 1 million likes on a tweet are rare, but Soulja fits the bill. Back in 2018, he tweeted, “In this world you either crank that soulja boy or it cranks you.” The post shot upwards of 1 million likes and half a million retweets to add even more strength. Not even the frameable content from famous rants by Kanye West and Gucci Mane have had bigger moments than this. If you see otherwise, prove it.