He was born William Dean Jarmon, Jr 1976, in Jackson, Tennessee. At age 13 he moved to Johnson City, Tennessee with his mother. This is where he met a friend named Gary Williams a.k.a Nitty who would later become the influence for Mantis to be a rapper. After being expelled from school Mantis began running the streets with friends, getting involved in illegal activity. During this time Nitty and he began selling drugs while waiting for Nitty to sign a recording deal. It was at that time that Mantis began freestyle rapping with Nitty, but was not taking it seriously.
By age 18, Mantis finds himself incarcerated for numerous felony offences. While serving time, he began to write rap songs as a past time. It didn’t take long for Mantis to begin a serious career in rap. After conversing with Nitty and letting him hear his developing skills, and being told by Nitty to be ready to record when he got out. This would be his way out of street life, when he gets out. Five and a half years later at age 23 he was released from prison. Soon he recorded and finished his first album “idle mind, devils playground”. Introducing the world for the first time to mantis.
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