22-year-old breakout rapper Erica Banks grew up in a suburb of Dallas, Texas called DeSoto, raised alongside two brothers. She excelled in school as a child, having a passion for writing poetry from a very young age. This passion eventually turned into writing raps at age 12, spitting some rhymes every day for her classmates during recess. During high school, Banks posted Instagram videos of her freestyle raps, which garnered thousands of likes. After graduating high school, Banks went to Texas A&M Commerce to study nursing, where she later switched to business. She realized she was unhappy in her studies soon after starting because she didn’t have enough time to make music, dropping out as a sophomore to pursue a rap career. 

Banks signed to 1501 Entertainment in 2020 after being offered three other deals from different labels. In 2019, Banks was able to single-handedly release three mixtapes, titled Art of The Hustle, Pressure, and Cocky On Purpose. Her 2020 mixtape Erica Banks is what really solidified her career in the industry, featuring what would become her breakout track, “Buss It”. 

In the early weeks of 2021, Banks’ popularity exploded when “Buss It”, which sampled Nelly’s “Hot In Herre”, went viral on TikTok thanks to a dance challenge. The #BussItChallenge featured women flaunting their bodies and twerking to Banks’ song, which quickly became popular across multiple social platforms. The song garnered more than 200 million views on TikTok and charted at #131 on Spotify. The popularity of “Buss It” led to Banks signing a new record deal in January 2021, one with Warner Bros Records. Banks certainly has a career in rap cut out for her, and it seems as though she can only go up from here.