21 Savage is heading back to where it all began.
On Monday, after years of immigration issues that resulted in his 2019 detention by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the 30-year-old rapper announced that he will head to the United Kingdom for his first and biggest headline show to date at London’s The O2 this November.
Savage, whose real name is She’yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph, teased the concert announcement on Instagram Friday, sharing a video compilation of performance clips and childhood memories set to Skylar Grey’s “Coming Home.”
“London… I’m comin home,” he concluded the video.
Drake, a frequent collaborator of the actor, seemed to suggest that he would be joining Savage at the London show. The Canadian rapper took to the comments of Savage’s celebratory post, writing, “*We’re [coming home].”
Savage’s lawyer, Charles Kuck, confirmed that the rapper was free to travel after becoming a “lawful permanent resident.”
“She’yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph followed all applicable Immigration laws since his initial detention by ICE. His immigration court proceedings have now been terminated and he is a lawful resident of the United States with the freedom to travel internationally,” Kuck said in a statement obtained by People on Friday.
Savage was born in the U.K. but has been raised in Atlanta since he was seven years old. In February 2019, he was arrested and detained by ICE, which claimed that he was “unlawfully present” in the U.S. over a visa that expired in 2006, when Savage was a minor. He was also convicted of felony drug charges in Georgia in 2014, which ICE cited as part of his arrest.
The rapper spent nine days incarcerated in an ICE detainment facility before being released on a $100,000 bond.
Days after he was released on bond and granted an expedited hearing, the then-26-year-old emcee sat down with Good Morning America to discuss his immigration case. The rapper alleged that he was targeted by ICE, which Alex Spiro — one of Savage’s lawyers, who JAY-Z hired on his behalf — claimed had to do with both his celebrity status and the content of his music, some of which calls out the immigration system.
“There’s a lot of things about this case that are curious and troubling. Even if you start at the beginning. He’s somebody who comes here as a young man — he’s one of the ‘dreamers’ as they’re called — and he comes over here and he has a singular offence for marijuana when he’s a college-aged person that’s vacated [and] sealed,” Spiro said. “There’s no issue. He’s getting a visa. He’s operating in good faith. He’s performing. He’s giving back to his community. He’s a son. He’s a father. And yet, they take this step, this unusual step, to arrest him the week before the GRAMMYs and not give him bond. We find the whole thing curious and troubling.”
“We believe, honestly, that he was targeted, of course, like they said and part of the reason, we think, is because he’s both a celebrity and they can use this as a way to send a message and also, perhaps, because of his music,” Spiro added.
Savage told Good Morning America he entered the country when he was seven years old and “didn’t even know what a visa was.”
“I knew I wasn’t born here, but I didn’t know, like, what that meant as far as when I transitioned into an adult how it was going to affect my life,” he said. “I wasn’t hiding it, but it’s, like, I didn’t want to get deported so I’m not gonna just come out and be like, ‘Hey, by the way, I wasn’t born here.'”
“I’ve been here 20 years, 19 years, this is all I know. You know what I’m saying?” he added. “I don’t feel like you should be arrested and put in a place where a murderer would be for just being in the country for too long.”
In addition to working to become a citizen at the time, Savage said he was focused on the people who were still detained without bond.
“I feel your pain and I’m going to do everything in my power to try and bring awareness to your pain,” he said.
“I think the message is that we can’t forget about the people that don’t have the resources, that don’t have the fame, to fight for their freedom, both in the criminal system and in the immigration system,” Spiro added. “There’s people that are just totally forgotten that exist in these detention centers. And people like JAY-Z and he stepped in for Meek Mill and he stepped in here. And now I’m hoping people like 21 Savage will bring light to these issues and help the people that are forgotten.”
On Saturday, Savage joined Drake onstage for his It’s All A Blur Tour stop in Toronto, his first performance outside of the U.S. Clips of the concert posted to X (formerly Twitter) show Drake introducing the younger rapper to the crowd for “the first time outside of America in his life,” and leading the audience in a rendition of “O Canada!” to celebrate.
21 Savage’s first show at the 02 in London will be on Nov. 30.