08/03/2017 by Julia van der Doesch
Miles Parks McCollum (born August 23, 1997), better known by his stage name Lil Yachty, is an American rapper and singer. Yachty first gained recognition in August 2015 for his singles “One Night” and “Minnesota” from his debut EP Summer Songs. He released his debut mixtape Lil Boat in March 2016. On June 10, 2016, Yachty announced that he had signed a joint venture record deal with Quality Control Music, Capitol Records, and Motown Records. His mixtapes Lil Boat and Summer Songs 2 were released in 2016 and his debut studio album Teenage Emotions in 2017.
McCollum was born in Mableton, Georgia. In 2015, Miles Parks McCollum adopted the nautical stage name “Yachty” and moved from his hometown of Atlanta to New York City to launch his career. He stayed with a friend and networked with online street fashionpersonalities, while he built up his own Instagram following. Yachty first came to prominence in December 2015 when the SoundCloud version of his song “One Night” was used in a viral comedy video.
In February 2016, Yachty debuted as a model in Kanye West’s Yeezy Season 3 fashion line at Madison Square Garden. Yachty’s debut mixtape Lil Boat was released in March 2016.
In April 2016, Yachty collaborated with D.R.A.M. on the hit song “Broccoli”, which peaked at number 5 on the Billboard Hot 100. He featured on Chance the Rapper’s Coloring Book mixtape, released in May 2016. On June 10, 2016 he announced he had signed a joint venture record deal with Quality Control Music, Capitol Records, and Motown Records. Yachty released his second mixtape Summer Songs 2 in July 2016.
In December 2016, he was featured on the hip hop single “iSpy” by Kyle. He was featured in Tee Grizzley’s single “From the D to the A”, released in March 2017.
On May 26, 2017, Lil Yachty released his debut studio album, Teenage Emotions. It features guest appearances from Migos, Diplo, Evander Griiim, Grace, Stefflon Don and YG, among others. Three promotion singles were released to co-incide with the track. The album’s first promotional single, “Harley”, produced by K Swisha, was released on April 14, 2017. The second promotional single, “Bring It Back”, produced by Free School, was released on May 4, 2017. The third promotional single, “X Men”, produced by 30 Roc and Tillie and featuring a guest appearance from American rapper Evander Griiim, was released on May 18, 2017.
Lil Yachty calls his style “bubblegum trap.” His songs have sampled sounds ranging from Mario Bros., Charlie Brown, the theme from Rugrats theme, and the startup sound of a GameCube console. Other themes in his works include clouds, cotton candy, the Super Nintendo, and scenes from Pixar films. His friend TheGoodPerry is heavily involved in the production of his songs. Yachty’s style has also been described as mumble rap.
Rolling Stone described his music as “catchy, intentionally dinky-sounding tunes packed with off-color boasts delivered in a proudly amateurish singsong.” The Guardian called his music “fun, hook-first pop rap oblivious to songcraft and structure that doesn’t take itself too seriously, with very little interest in legacy and even less in rap canon.”