David Banner is an African American rapper, hip hop music record producer, record label executive, and philanthropist. Prior to having a solo career, Banner was part of the rap duo Crooked Lettaz which released an album called Grey Skies in 1999. Banner then released his first solo album called Them Firewater Boyz, Vol. 1 in 2000. The album managed to sell over 10,000 copies in his hometown alone despite having little record label backing. David Banner is well known for his many contributions to his local community of Jackson, Mississippi as well as Mississippi and the entire Gulf Coast region. In Jackson he has volunteered with such community organizations as Stewpot Ministries. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina in 2005 he started the non-profit organization Heal the Hood which provided a range of services to victims of Hurricane Katrina ranging from reuniting family members separated by the storm to dispensing food to the various devestated communities of the Gulf Coast. A large benefit concert for Heal the Hood was held on September 17, 2005 at Philips Arena in Atlanta. The concert had performances from myriad recording artists, mostly from Atlanta, from Lil Jon to 112, Busta Rhymes to Lyfe Jennings. He was also involved in similar benefit concerts in Mississippi and New York. In addition to these efforts Banner has given tens of thousands of dollars to college scholarships for minorities.
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