Darold Ferguson, Jr. (born October 20, 1988), better known by his stage name ASAP Ferg (stylized as A$AP Ferg), is an American hip hop recording artist from New York City's Harlem neighborhood. He is a member of the hip hop collective A$AP Mob, from which he adopted his moniker. In January 2013, Ferg signed a solo record deal with Polo Grounds and RCA, the same labels that helped launch A$AP Worldwide, when Ferg's A$AP Mob cohorts ASAP Rocky and ASAP Yams, negotiated their own respective deal in 2011. His debut album Trap Lord was released on August 20, 2013, and was met with generally positive reviews.
ASAP Ferg was born Darold Ferguson in Harlem on October 20, 1988. Ferg was raised in an area notoriously known as "Hungry Ham (Hamilton Heights)". His father, Darold Ferguson, owned a Harlem boutique and printed shirts and logos for record labels including Bad Boy Records and luminaries such as Teddy Riley, Heavy D, Bell Biv DeVoe, and more. Even though he immersed himself in music, the younger Ferg pursued fashion at first. Inspired by his father, who died of kidney failure, Ferg launched clothing and jewelry lines at a young age and attended art school. Launching Devoni Clothing in 2005, he designed and distributed high-end belts worn by Chris Brown, Swizz Beatz, and Diggy Simmons.
2009–2012: ASAP Mob
Eventually, he started doing music. "Trapping means hustling," he explains. "I went from painting to making clothes to rapping. I always put myself into everything I do one hundred percent. It doesn't matter what I'm working on. I want to perfect everything I do. Success is the only option. They call me 'Trap Lord' because my hustle game is impeccable." Friends since high school, ASAP Rocky recognized that Ferg had an "impeccable hustle game" and pushed Ferg to continue rapping as much as possible. They later joined the hip hop collective ASAP Mob, from which they both adopted their respective monikers. Since 2010, they collaborated on various songs such as "Get High," "Kissin' Pink" and "Ghetto Symphony", the latter being from Rocky's chart-topping major label debut, Long. Live. ASAP (2013).
2012–present: Trap Lord
Ferg's debut single "Work", produced by Chinza // Fly, appeared on the ASAP Mob mixtape Lords Never Worry, released on August 28, 2012. The song's music video quickly earned over 2 million online views and was dubbed one of the "50 Best Songs of 2012" by Complex Magazine. On January 10, 2013, he announced Trap Lord would be the title of his debut album. When speaking on his debut album Trap Lord, Ferg said: "I hope people take the good and the bad from what I've got to say, I've seen so much shit in my life. There were times I ducked bullets at a basketball game, and then I went to a fashion show. I've experienced depression. I've experienced triumph. I've experienced hate. I've experienced love. I learned how to be independent. I made it out of the hood, and now I want go to the top."
On January 10, 2013, it was announced that he signed a record deal with RCA Records and Polo Grounds. On May 14, 2013, the remix to "Work", featuring fellow American rappers ASAP Rocky, Schoolboy Q, French Montana and Trinidad James, was released to digital retailers. On June 2, 2013, while revealing Trap Lord would feature guest appearances from hip hop groups Bone Thugs-n-Harmony and Onyx, Ferg announced that the album would be released on August 20, 2013. On October 15, he was named "Rookie of the Year" at the 2013 BET Hip Hop Awards. However, he was not there to accept the award as he did not think he was going to win.