Aubrey Drake Graham (born October 24, 1986), known simply as Drake, is a Canadian rapper, singer, songwriter, record producer, and actor. Drake initially gained recognition as an actor on the teen drama television series Degrassi: The Next Generation in the early 2000s. Intent on pursuing a career as a rapper, he departed the series in 2007 following the release of his debut mixtape, Room for Improvement. He released two further independent projects, Comeback Season and So Far Gone, before signing to Lil Wayne’s Young Money Entertainment in June 2009.
Drake released his debut studio album, Thank Me Later, in 2010 to commercial success. Thank Me Later debuted at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200 and was soon certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). His next two releases, 2011’s Take Care and 2013’s Nothing Was the Same, were worldwide successes, with certifications of quadruple and triple platinum respectively in U.S. sales, with the former also earning him his first Grammy Award for Best Rap Album. They were followed by two mixtapes, with the trap-influenced If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late, and a collaboration with Future for What a Time to Be Alive, in 2015. Each mixtape saw widespread commercial success, with the former being certified double platinum in the U.S., as well as being subject to rave critical reception. Drake released his fourth album, Views, in 2016, breaking numerous chart records in the process. Views sat atop the Billboard 200 for ten nonconsecutive weeks, becoming the first album by a solo male to do so in over 10 years. It also saw Drake leading the Billboard Hot 100 and the Billboard 200 simultaneously for eight weeks, breaking the previous record of seven held by both Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston. It also achieved triple platinum status in the U.S., and earned over 1 million album-equivalent units in the first week of its release.
Alongside his Grammy Award win, Drake has won three Juno Awards and six BET Awards. He also occupies the highest number of singles to reach number one on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. He has the most number ones on the Hot Rap Songs, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay and Rhythmic Charts.
Drake has developed other ventures, including his OVO Sound record label with longtime collaborator Noah “40” Shebib. Drake acts as a producer, producing under the pseudonym of Champagne Papi. Using the “OVO” moniker, Drake has his own clothing line and his own channel on Beats 1. He is also currently acting as the global ambassador for NBA franchise, the Toronto Raptors.