Lil Baby — born Dominique Jones — is one of the most prominent rappers in the music industry right now. After rising to fame with his debut mixtape Perfect Timing in 2017, Lil Baby established himself as someone who's here to stay, charting over four dozen songs on the Billboard Hot 100 and going platinum with multiple records. His 2020 effort, My Turn, was so successful, it was even crowned the most-streamed album of 2020. Since there are only greater things in store for him, here are some facts about Lil Baby you should know.
Considering his success on the charts, you may find it surprising Lil Baby wasn't interested in a music career at first. Since he was forced to sell drugs as a teenager to make ends meet, he thought he would never be able to change from that lifestyle. "I went to jail my first time at thirteen," Lil Baby said in a December 2020 trailer for his Apple Music documentary. "I dropped out of school somewhere between 9th and 10th grade. I never wanted to be a rapper. I was already young and turnt in the streets."
However, after he served two years in prison at the age of 19, Lil Baby came out with a new purpose. "After I got locked up again, my perspective changed. I became an artist with something to say, people to stand for, and now it’s finally time to tell my story," he said in the documentary trailer. So here's what to know.
1. Lil Baby uses his platform to fight for social change.
Lil Baby was true to his word when he said he wanted to make a difference with his music. In June 2020, following the tragic deaths of Black Americans at the hands of police like George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, the rapper raised awareness about the Black Lives Matter movement in his music video for "Bigger Picture," which showed Lil Baby joining an anti-police brutality protest.
"I find it crazy the police’ll shoot you and know that you dead, but still tell you to freeze/ F*cked up, I seen what I seen/ I guess that mean hold him down if he say he can’t breathe," Lil Baby raps on the song.
2. Lil Baby has worked with all your other favorite rappers.
Drake, Future, DaBaby — you name it. Lil Baby has teamed up with all the biggest names in the industry. His 2018 Drake collaboration "Yes, Indeed," which peaked at No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 100, marked his first top 10 hit. The same year, Lil Baby collaborated with Gunna on "Drip Too Hard," which peaked at No. 4 and went on to receive a Grammy nomination for Best Rap/Sung Performance.
3. Lil Baby wants to remain low key.
If you're wondering why Lil Baby doesn't do any interviews, it's because he really doesn't care for them. "I don’t got a thrill for it. Fashion show in Paris, like … cool [shrugs]," the rapper told The New York Times in February 2020. "I think I got that from prison. Like, just, you’re there, but you’re not there."
Fans shouldn't expect Lil Baby to get into beefs with other stars any time soon, either. When asked if he's interested in stirring up beef with other rappers, Lil Baby responded, "To me, that’s gimmicks — clout. I ain’t for that. My following came from me, not like some old viral stuff. I don’t even know how to do that."
4. Lil Baby's dream is to own a record label.
Some day, Lil Baby would like to retire as a rapper and work behind the scenes instead. "I really want to own a label like Def Jam [or] like Roc Nation," the rapper told The New York Times. "I’d rather go that way, where I manage a Selena Gomez and get 10 percent off of it... Why wouldn’t I? I can make the same money and I don’t have to be catching all these planes."
Now that you know more about Lil Baby, stream some of his biggest hits below.