Amine is a new hit artist that took America by storm. However, there are two sides to his identity. He wants his fans to know that he is American and Ethiopian. And his sound has been strongly influenced by the land from which he came.
Amine is the son of Ethiopian immigrants who moved here in the 1990’s. For a majority of his younger years he was raised in American culture. He is said to have been introduced to rap as a teenager. After being cut from the high school basketball team as a freshman, he began making diss tracks about other local high schools.
Though his first songs only brought him a small audience, he was dedicated to continuing his dream of becoming a hip hop legend. Amine went on to study marketing at Portland State University and interned for the hip hop publication, Complex. And he soon gained popularity.
However, he was still not satisfied. He wanted to add his Ethiopian culture to the sound of his music. His dedication to this mission first came from his name, Amine. Amine means loyal in Arabic. In interviews, he often discusses how his mother often reminded him of it’s meaning and that he was destined to do something for their country and their culture. This is why she sent him to spend summers there at a young age. She wanted him to pick up on Ethiopian values and traditions.
Eventually after gaining a larger platform, Amine used his influence as a musician to shed light on political events in Ethiopia and America. The New York Times even wrote an article about him entitled, “Meet Aminé, a Joyful Rapper With an Eye on Politics.” The article digs deeper into the meaning behind some of his lyrics on his last album, “Good for You.” Readers are drawn heavily into his background and the meaning behind his work. You can truly see the duality in his identity and how present it is within his work.