KSI isn’t your typical rapper with a familiar rapper origin story. Born in 1993, Olajide Olayinka Williams Olatunji started as a Youtuber making gaming videos. Since then, he has grown from a YouTuber to a rapper, filmmaker, and professional boxer.
But here’s where it gets interesting; KSI became a millionaire before releasing a song. His debut album came in 2020, and it was his first attempt at proving that there was so much more to him than a social media influencer cosplaying as a rapper.
Early Life and Rise to Fame
Born in Watford, England, KSI is a British Youtuber turned boxer and rapper. He lived with his parents and his brother Deji in Watford when he started his career streaming himself playing FIFA on YouTube.
Today, he is better known for his Twitter beef and boxing fights. KSI is one of the biggest names on YouTube and has successfully expanded his career beyond video streaming to music, acting and boxing.
KSI rocketed to fame in 2009 as a gamer. However, many now recognize his influence in fights against other YouTube personalities, and his music career mainly focused on ‘diss’ tracks.
He launched his first YouTube channel in 2008 but what would catapult him to stardom was his second channel, KSIOlajidebt, which came in 2009 and has garnered nearly five billion views to date with more than 20 million subscribers.
While his YouTube videos centered mostly around FIFA, he also participated in eSports competitions where he went on to beat the notable Virgin Gaming co-founder Zach Zeldinfull.
During that time, KSI and four other gaming YouTubers formed Ultimate Sidemen, a group that would later expand to a seven-membership group.
But that bromance didn’t last long, and in 2017, conflicts ensued within the group, and KSI left and released a few “diss” tracks aimed at several members.
A few months later, he would rejoin the same group, a move that other YouTubers felt was fake and that the whole conflict was designed to generate more views on videos of KSI and other group members.
Another YouTube personality, Joe Weller, released a “diss” track aimed at KSI, creating a Twitter row between them. Following the argument, the two announced that they had decided to participate in a boxing match against each other.
That was, ideally, the launching of KSI as a boxer. The fight occurred in 2018, with KSI winning in the third round by a technical knockout.
The same year, KSI took on Logan Paul in one of the most lucrative non-professional boxing fights of all time alongside his brother Deji who took on Logan’s younger brother, Jake Paul.
Though ending in a draw, his first fight with Logan Paul is estimated to have earned more than $50 million in streaming revenue. Sunday times estimated his net worth in 2020 to be £12m.
Alongside his YouTube channel, he has continued making music and participated in more boxing matches against other YouTubers.
KSI has had some significant career highlights that have shaped who he is today. The YouTuber cum boxer and musician known for his twist hairstyle featuring high-top dreads is the second most subscribed YouTuber from the UK.
His second YouTube channel is the 6th most subscribed channel in the UK. KSI is the most subscribed person of color on the streaming site.
KSI Without a Beard
Most black men’s beard styles feature a full beard or black men’s goatee and maybe a disconnected undercut, braid hairstyle, buzz cut, tight curls, or dreadlock styles. KSI didn’t have a beard when his career started but has since sported his high dreads with a chin strap beard.
KSI Beard Styles
While we may never see KSI rock some killer Viking hair or a Ragnar beard, he still has a decent beard. The YouTuber and boxer have never been able to grow a full beard. He, however, still looks content with his chin strap beard and a light mustache.
A closer look will tell that his beard tends to grow in patches, but it still looks good, especially when combined with his signature dreads tied in a bandana. As a social media influencer, it’s only natural that among his adoring fans are a few young men who want to look like him.
If that sounds like you, consider investing in shampoos for black men and one of the best beard kits to pull off the look.