Earl Stevens (born November 15, 1967 in Vallejo, California) best known by his stage name E-40, is a Bay Area rapper, part of the Bay Area rap group The Click. The "40" in "E-40" was chosen by Earl as a reference to "40s" - 40 ounce bottles of malt liquor. The "E" was simply derived from Earl's first name.His mother gave him this idea. After the release of The Click's first album Down and Dirty, E-40's local solo debut was released.
After a talent show at Grambling State University, E-40 and his cousin B-Legit decided to attempt a career in rap. They moved back to Vallejo and teamed up with D-Shot, E-40's brother, to form the group Most Valuable Players. E-40's gospel singing uncle (see "I got the game from my Uncle Saint Charles") helped them put out the record. E-40's sister, Suga T, was then added to the group to form The Click.
E-40 has released over ten albums, including those with The Click. He has also appeared on numerous movie soundtracks and has guest appearances on a host of other rap albums. His distinctive voice and rapid lyrical delivery have resulted in collaborations with many hip-hop stars.
After completing a deal with Jive Records he signed with Lil Jon's BME Recordings and Warner Bros. Records. His single "Tell Me When To Go," featuring Keak Da Sneak, became popular throughout the United States, and E-40 appeared on MTV's Direct Effect and BET's 106 & Park. Publicity for E-40 and the greater Hyphy Movement was achieved through the MTV special My Block: The Bay. He later released "U And Dat" in April 2006, featuring T-Pain and Kandi Girl and produced by Lil Jon. His album My Ghetto Report Card debuted at #1 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart and #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 on March 14th, 2006. Released through Sick Wid It/BME/Warner Bros. Records, the album was produced by Lil Jon, Rick Rock, and E-40's son, Droop-E.
He is also featured on DJ Shadow's new album The Outsider, on a track called "Dat's My Part". In 2006, he also appeared on Tech N9ne's Everready: The Religion CD on a track titled "Jellysickle." In that same year, he contributed a verse to the official remix of "It's Okay (One Blood)" by fellow West coast rapper The Game along with 24 other prominent MCs including Slim Thug, Jim Jones, Jadakiss, Nas, Snoop Dogg, Fat Joe, Twista and Ja Rule among various others.
E-40 hosts a weekly radio show on San Francisco hip-hop radio station KMEL on most Sunday afternoons. The show focuses on local talent and interviews with celebrities and also has a segment called "Movie Week" where E-40 reviews the week's releases. Currently, E-40 is working on his new album The Ball Street Journal initially being set for an August 2007 release. In September 2007, Warner Bros. Records announced that the album would be released in early 2008.Kanye West produced a new track that is likely to be included in The Ball Street Journal titled "Get Deleted", featuring singer Bosko on the chorus.