How the Song ‘Mo Bamba’ Got Bigger Than Mo Bamba


It started with a simple request in high school. Mo Bamba just wanted his name thrown in a verse once he caught word that his friend, Sheck Wes, had begun rapping.

Less than a week later, Bamba received an audio file. It was called “Mo Bamba.”

“This dude named a whole song after me,” Bamba told Bleacher Report.

Not just any song, but a club banger that has made Sheck Wes a star, a smash hit that’ll make you spazz in the whip, a track tailor-made for any workout playlist.

“I’m known more for that song than my basketball career, which is crazy to me,” says Bamba, who was drafted sixth overall by the Orlando Magic in June.

More than a song, “Mo Bamba” is a soundtrack for a friendship that dates back to the days when the two grew up playing basketball as teenagers in Harlem, where Wes led the city’s public league in assists.

Bamba raved about Wes’ basketball IQ, but the now 19-year-old star decided instead to pursue a modeling career in high school and appeared in the Yeezy Season 3 fashion show at Madison Square Garden in 2016.

“I had a Bronx Borough playoff game, and I had to make a decision: Like, am I gonna be a part of this game, or be part of this fashion show?” Wes told Slam in May. “And I made the decision to go to Yeezy Season 3. That show opened up doors for me, and it opened up my mind.”

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