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Buddy (born 10 Sept. 1993), real name Simmie Sims, is a rapper and singer from Compton, California. His performance career began at age seven when he started starring in plays and musicals including The Wiz, Oliver With a Twist, and Dreamgirls at Amazing Grace Conservatory. "I grew up as a full-fledged entertainer rather than just somebody trying to rap about stuff," he has said about that experience. When the school became too expensive he withdrew, later attending a high school performing arts program in Long Beach, California.
As a teenager he began recording his own material. In 2009, he got a break when TV music supervisor Scott Vener showed Pharrell Williams an early effort by the 15-year-old Buddy. Impressed, Pharrell began to work with the teenager, and signed him to his i am OTHER creative collective and record label. When Buddy was 18, he scored an underground hit with "Awesome Awesome," produced by The Neptunes with Pharrell making an appearance in the video.
On March 28, 2012 he released the single "Staircases" produced by Pharrell and featuring Kendrick Lamar.
In 2014, continuing to work with Pharrell, he released his debut mixtape, Idle Time, which featured Kendrick Lamar, Miley Cyrus, Freddie Gibbs, Robin Thicke, Sir Michael Rocks, and others, with production from Pharrell Williams, Chuck Inglish, Boi-1da, Cardo, Blaq, and Polyester among others.
He then embarked on a series of collaborations with various artists, including Nipsey Hussle ("Status Symbol 2" – Nipsey Hussle ft. Buddy), BJ The Chicago Kid and Chance the Rapper ("Church" – BJ The Chicago Kid ft. Chance The Rapper & Buddy), Wiz Khalifa (Buddy and Wiz Khalifa both featured on DJ Quik & Problem's "This Is Your Moment"), and A$AP Rocky (co-featuring with Wiz Khalifa again on "Way Hii" by A$AP Mob).
In November 2016 he put out his own single, "Shine," produced by Mike & Keys and DJ Khalil. It was premiered by hip-hop/R&B tastemaker Carl Chery, with a video directed by Andy Hines featuring a cameo from Nipsey Hussle. The song garnered over 2.7 million streams on Spotify, 12 million on Apple Music, and nearly half a million views on YouTube. Buddy described the single as "a ghetto hymn acknowledging inevitable death while showing gratitude for abundant life."
His EP Ocean & Montana, produced by the Haitian-Canadian DJ and producer KAYTRANADA, was released 19 May 2017 by Cool LIL Company. It featured the single "Find Me." The EP's title refers to the intersection in Santa Monica where he lived, sought inspiration, and began collaborating with KAYTRANADA after leaving his parents' home.