Until the pandemic, Lil Yachty never stopped to think about how quick-ly he became famous. “It was a full year from walking across the stage in high school to then I’m in this penthouse in midtown Atlanta, I got this G-wagon, put my mother in a house,” Yachty explains. “It’s a fast life. You not ever getting the chance to think about a lot of shit.”
Yachty’s 2016 hit “Minnesota,” which had the treacly energy of a nursery rhyme, earned the then-17-year-old the title “King of the Teens.” But since then, he’s become an elder statesman of a certain brand of young superstar — and something like the Gen Z answer to Diddy. He collaborated with brands like Nautica and Target; he appeared in the movie How High 2; he signed an endorsement deal with Sprite. Signees to his new label imprint, Concrete Boys, even get an iced-out chain.
Yachty’s upcoming mixtape, Michigan Boat Boy, is an ode to the state where a new crop of MCs is currently restitching the fabric of modern hip-hop. It’s also a testament to one of the 23-year-old rapper’s greatest gifts: his ear for talent. “I started doing my own homework and digging,” Yachty explains. “And just started realizing there are no bad rappers in Michigan. Everyone knows how to rap.” For all of the criticisms of Yachty as a lyricist over the years — rap purists loudly disdained him early on — there’s a clear sense of progression on tracks like “Royal Rumble.” The wordplay is punchier, and the wisecracks are wittier. He fires offlines that fit perfectly alongside the Michigan rappers’ clever bars. He even manages to land a pun about The Grudge.
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
Not since the teen pop craze of the early 2000s have we seen a music movement quite like this. Acts like BTS and Blackpink have led K-pop boldly into the mainstream, winning fans around the globe with catchy hooks, colorful videos, and irresistible personalities. But that’s only a sampling of what Korea’s hottest acts have to offer.
Sam Jay's Comedy of Compromise
With her new HBO late-night show, the stand-up is aiming to bring Americans together
LEAH KATE DROPS NEW BOPPING SINGLE ‘BOY NEXT DOOR,' TALKS WORKING WITH REDDIT'S ALEXIS OHANIAN
The American singer’s exponential rise as an indie artist has been second to none
It's Olivia Rodrigo's World
‘Drivers License’ is an instant classic — but chances are that’s only the beginning for a songwriter in full command of pop’s history and future
THE CLASSIC-ROCK GOLD RUSH
As the giants of the genre contemplate retirement, companies are dreaming up increasingly innovative ways to bring new value to older sounds
The veteran music mogul on the pitfalls of viral hits and what defines success
The Triumph of BTS
How seven young superstars rewrote music-biz rules and became the biggest band in the world
MAGICAL MYSTERY TOURS
Aided by the Great Pause, concert tech is growing by leaps and bounds. The next wave of live music will be unlike anything we’ve ever seen
The Enemy Within
Race and White Supremacy in American Policing
WHAT'S A GOOD RECORD DEAL?
Superstars like Kanye West and Taylor Swift have bashed lopsided label deals — and a new generation of artists is vying to recalibrate music’s balance of power
WINTER WELLNESS: 5 TIPS FOR PROTECTING YOUR Gut and Brain Health THIS NEW YEAR
This new year may look socially different than years past, and considering the added stress, limited sleep and typical holiday overindulgence most of us experienced last month, it’s even more necessary than usual to let our bodies recover and regenerate in this post-holiday season.
A Teacher's Lifesaving Call
In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Julia Koch began what was only her second year as a first-grade teacher in a virtual classroom at Edgewood Elementary School in Muskegon Heights, Michigan. One September afternoon a few weeks into the school year, she received a call from Cynthia Phillips, who was having technical difficulties with her granddaughter’s tools for online learning.
STATE POLICE DROPS PHONE APP THAT MAKES TEXTS DISAPPEAR
The Michigan State Police told officers to remove a phone app that keeps no record of outgoing text messages, a newspaper reported this week.
WHAT’S NEXT? THESE SEVEN TRAILBLAZERS ARE HELPING DEFINE THE FUTURE OF SPIRITUALITY.
Please note, as these dates approach, some events may be modified, postponed or canceled to protect the safety of both event organizers and attendees. Check online or call ahead to confirm details. Throughout the year, visit MyNorth.com/Events for current community happenings.
Discovering the Splendor of SLAG
A pile of slag remaining from copper smelting operations of 1930s Cottonwood, Arizona is one area of focus for Minerals Research, Inc. (MRI), the company pursuing a 15-20 year process to remove the pile using innovative recovery technology.
A DOG SLEDDING ADVENTURE THROUGH THE U.P WILDS
LUSCIOUS. LOCAL. HANDMADE CHOCOLATES.
INDULGE IN THE SWEET CREATIONS OF FIVE NORTHERN MICHIGAN CHOCOLATIERS THIS HOLIDAY SEASON.
Gangsters Up North
Was Capone in Leelanau County? Did Dillinger hide out on Bois Blanc Island? Did the Purple Gang dance until dawn at the Graceland Ballroom in Lupton? Using interviews, local newspaper accounts, land records and internet resources, Michigan author Robert Knapp carefully sorts truth from myth in “Gangsters Up North: Mobsters, Mafia, and Racketeers in Michigan’s Vacationlands.” The following are excerpts from Knapp’s historical non-fiction book.
Part of a Yuletide Tradition