Bow Wow Retires: Former Child Rap Star Officially Announces His Retirement From Rapping As He Shifts Focus To Acting

Bow Wow is officially retiring from the rap industry, with the former child rap star announcing on Sunday that he’s planning to quit after finishing his current tour.

The rapper made the announcement on Twitter on Sunday, noting that he is ready to start a “new adventure,” VH1 noted. Bow Wow is set to begin a tour of Australia, one that takes him to Canberra, Newcastle, and Melbourne. After that, he will be done.

The rapper, whose real name is Shad Moss, told fans that he had always planned to quit the rap industry before he turned 30, and now he is following through on those plans.

It is not a surprise to many following his career that Bow Wow would be retiring, VH1 noted, as his rap career has been shaky in the past few years.

“Bow Wow exploded onto the scene in the early 2000’s releasing several platinum and gold albums alongside his mentor Jermaine Dupri,” the report noted. “He’s starred in a handful of movies including the cult classic Like Mike. As he grew older his rap career fell flat, but he still had a few noticeable moments including singing with Young Money and Face Off with Omarion.”

But the announcement was still rather sudden. Just a few days ago, rapper Khleo Thomas was talking about his work touring with Bow Wow. Thomas, who is better known for his role as Zero from the 2003 Disney movie Holes, has been making a name for himself in the music industry as well.

The two worked together on the “Scream Tour” and appeared together in the movie Roll Bounce, with Thomas helping Bow Wow establish himself in the movie industry and Bow Wow helping give Thomas’ rap career a big boost.

Thomas noted that being able to be on stage brought out a new aspect of his career.

“When it comes to performing, I am a whole different person,” Thomas told HipHopDX. “I am a whole different being. If you could bottle that energy on stage when you know what you’re doing up there, you’d be a billionaire. You’d have the most money in the freaking world because people chase that forever.”

And Bow Wow had recently signed to Bad Boy Records, the label owned by Puff Daddy. To many, that made it seem as if Bow Wow may be trying to find a new phase of his rap career.

In an industry where child rappers are often seen as a novelty, Bow Wow was able to parlay his early fame into a legitimate rap career. He first hit the scene at the age of 13 with the album Beware of Dog, then followed it up with two other successful albums, Doggy Bag in 2001 and Unleashed in 2003.

Bow Wow had taken a shift into more acting in recent years, with a recurring role in Entourage as a stand-up comedian and a role in the Forest Whitaker film Patriots.

In a 2008 interview, Bow Wow said he hoped that his career path would resemble Will Smith, who was famous as a teenage rapper before become a successful actor.

“After 16 years in the music industry and six successful albums, I’ve decided to shift my energy to something else I’m passionate about, acting,” Bow Wow told the Hollywood Reporter. “I’m going to try to be the next Will Smith.”

He has been quite successful in his acting career, appearing as Shad Moss in The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, Johnson Family Vacation, and All About the Benjamins.

With the retirement announcement on Sunday, Bow Wow is making the shift away from rapping and into acting more official.

[Photo by Rich Fury/Invision/AP Images]