Los Angeles-based rapper HoodTrophy Bino (born Tadashi Sayres) creates empowering music about overcoming hardships and leveling up in life. Raised by a single mother in a house with fourteen brothers and sisters under one roof in Palmdale, California and later the crime-ridden projects of South Central LA, HoodTrophy Bino (“Bino”) succumbed to the gang life that surrounded him. Finding an important outlet in music when violence surrounded him, Bino began rapping himself – first being exposed to freestyle through his older brother.
Due to gang involvement and a father serving a life sentence in San Quentin, Bino began repeating a doomed path that found him circulating in and out of jail. During one of his short stints, he met Soulja Boy who was also serving time. The two developed a friendship after Bino wrote him a letter and gave him a bag of Hot Cheetos. Shortly after his release from jail, Big Draco reached out and signed Bino to his S.O.D.M.G. (Stacks on Deck Money Gang) label having been impressed by his determination and musical talent. Venturing into the studio soon after, they recorded their first song “Racing In Traffic” in 2021.
Bino’s single, “Wake Em Up” featuring acclaimed female rapper K Shiday, delivers a powerful message about staying present in the moment and engaged in life. After experiencing the loss of his family members, Bino used this philosophy to help heal himself and hopes to encourage others to do the same. With a hard-hitting flow full of fervor over decades of club-worthy beats, “Wake Em Up” is a fierce and cathartic anthem about leveling up, finding your higher purpose in life, and living in greatness.
“You can wake up on different levels,” says Bino about the song and video. “You can become woke about your life – how you want it to be, instead of how it keeps crashing out of control.” The video shows Bino thrashing in bed, having a nightmare. Past excesses torment him, but he finds himself living the life he had always dreamed of – a gorgeous girlfriend (played by K.Shiday), a lit luxury beach house in Marina Del Rey, and close friends celebrating his new house, lifestyle, and accomplishments.
Bino is still striving to reach this dream – he began life in poverty with seven brothers and sisters (thirteen counting step-siblings) where they would sleep in hotels with two beds, a couch, and his mom and step-dad on the floor. “I had nothing growing up,” recalls Bino. “Trauma became an everyday part of my life. My pops is serving a life sentence in San Quentin. My best friend growing up was kidnapped and executed when I was 17.”
K. Shiday lends her voice to the single with sheer magnetism and effortless, charismatic flow. Resonating deeply with the song’s message, the artist confides, “I am rebranding myself. I am independent now and the song and video with Bino appealed to me.” Together, HoodTrophy Bino and K. Shiday create a captivating dynamic, united by the same story of overcoming obstacles through music, determination, and self-expression. The song infuses piano and a music-box backdrop to a track with both artists rapping hard to make their fairytale a reality.
Bino’s music discusses his life and what he’s been through; from hard-hitting bangers like “Thuggin” to melodic, soulful ballads, like “Project Baby.” Bino’s single “Dripped in Designer” was released in 2021 featuring Soulja Boy Tell ‘Em. It’s a muted, melancholy rap saga celebrating the luxurious dreams of distant islands and designer drip. “Most Wanted” is a potent powerhouse that shows off Bino’s quick-witted flow and upbeat tempo. The respect and love Bino has received from music has given him hope and encouraged him to show a better life to his young children.
By reducing his sentence from 13 years to a 7-year joint suspension for good behavior, HoodTrophy Bino is a standout example of someone who has overcome insurmountable obstacles, escaped gang life, and created a better future for himself and his family. Today, he is an advocate for gang members who grow up in the hood and witness death every other day with seemingly no way out. Developing his own PTSD, anxiety, and depression, Bino knows many young people are overlooked and without an outlet for therapy or a way to express themselves.HoodTrophy Bino has opened for Soulja Boy, Tee Grizzley, Bow Wow, Snoop Dogg, Chris Brown, Omarion, Flo Malcom, SkinnyFromThe9, YN Jay, and Ohgeesy. With an upcoming nationwide Back to School Tour with rising Asian American artist, Star2 and a new album on the horizon, HoodTrophy Bino is a prolific rapper and motivator for his generation.
“I’m not here because I’m the best, I’m here because they tried to break me and they couldn’t.”
Bino will release his debut EP in January 2023 and “Wake ‘Em Up” is the second single on the EP. A powerful song about shifting your mindset, HoodTrophy Bino calls upon his past struggles to help guide him in accomplishing his dreams today.
Watch “Wake Em Up” Below: