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While easy to pass it off as such, Lil Baby’s position as a power player in southern rap right now is no coincidence. Yes, the story of a rapper blowing up just a year after he first picked up the trade has its fair share of red flags. But, a deeper look at Lil Baby’s ascension paints this as nothing but fate.

Even prior to ever stepping in the booth, Baby’s environment, and network of friends and collaborators began to unknowingly groom the young star into the phenom that he is today. For the rapper, his melodic street poetry was the unofficial passing of the torch from an era particularly catalyzed by the talents of names like Young Thug and Rich Homie Quan.

Lil Baby, whether he realized or not, effectively bore the responsibility of wrapping up his harsh reality into addictive and beautiful deliveries. But, without the right infrastructure in place, such talent could have easily fallen on to deaf ears. Here at REVOLT TV, we’re taking a look at the situations that contributed to Lil Baby’s success. Check them out below.

1. Young Thug

The cosign of an artist of Young Thug’s caliber is enough to catalyze some talents. But, when taking Thug’s full-blown friendship and mentorship into account, the results could be insane. Such is the case for Lil Baby. This isn’t to say that Young Thug’s responsible for Baby’s success, but the newcomer has been influenced by Thugga, as the So Much Fun rapper helped him get his foot in the door—a piece of succor that anyone can appreciate.

2. Quality Control

It should go without saying that the presence of minds like Pee Thomas and Coach K can’t hurt anyone, but we’ll reiterate it anyway. Lil Baby being added to the Quality Control roster arrived at the end of a dynamic run that the label experienced with Lil Yachty. As a result, there was a clear need to take the formula that propelled Yachty and apply it to their latest project. The end result was a year packed to the rim in guest appearances and sold out club dates. In Baby’s case, a very distinct style of rap set the precedent that would see him outlast the run of his label-mate.

3. His work ethic

Upon his arrival, Lil Baby wasted no time in getting audiences properly acquainted with his catalog, notably dropping four full-length projects in 2017. When executed improperly, such an effort could have very well oversaturated his introduction to the masses. But, what it effectively did was provide the south with plenty of street anthems to syndicate throughout the country. Lil Baby essentially revived a certain energy in his hometown that provided him with a solidified fanbase that could propel him into just about any other locale.

4. The Drake Effect

Love it or hate it, the power of the Drake co-sign is undeniable with his affinity for lending it to southern upstarts being well-documented. So, when Lil Baby and the 6 God linked up for “Yes Indeed,” the Atlanta star’s takeover was only a matter of time. Interestingly enough, the track, which credits Drake as a featured artist, was originally his own to begin with. It was when Lil Baby hopped on the track that Drizzy ended up giving it to the rising star. The cut first premiered on Drizzy’s OVO Radio and generated quite the buzz before an official release. It set the stage for 2018’s Harder Than Ever and issued a new era of mainstream success for Lil Baby, as he and his team effectively leveraged the new platform into longevity.

5. Street Gossip

Simply put, Street Gossip is all she wrote. It arrived as the nail in the coffin that arrived post-“Yes Indeed” to demonstrate Lil Baby’s skill at crafting a body of work that still adheres to the critically acclaimed precedent set by his Hard series of projects, while curating a strong set of collaborators and production that make for gold.

6. Gunna

To the untrained eye, the bond and synergy shared between Lil Baby and Gunna appears to be nothing more than a camaraderie developed between friends and eventual collaborators. But, Gunna’s influence on Lil Baby’s career runs much deeper in significance. Gunna notably picked up the pen first, and it was with his guidance that Baby followed suit. “I never put the songs out, but when I first started to rap, I used to pay [Gunna] like $100 like, ‘Imma give you $100, write something for me so I can try to learn how to go in there and record it,’” Lil Baby once revealed in an interview with 16 Bars. “That’s how I used to practice.”

Gunna would double down in this interview in Rolling Stone where he admits to giving Baby pointers when he was first starting out, encouraging him to take his craft a bit more serious.

7. His Upbringing

As morbid and cliche as it seems, Lil Baby’s background, colored by street politics and survival tactics, is the solid ground on which he stands. He has effectively mastered the art of taking the hood’s realities and flipping them into auto tune-laced poetry — not for the sake romanticization, but rather a concentrated authenticity. Whether this appreciation is apparent among listeners, it’s certainly obvious that the emcee isn’t a hard listen. Where previous disciples such as Young Thug and Migos had long strayed away from such raps, as their realities no longer called for such narration, Baby’s fresh-faced career is still not too far removed from the life he once knew, leaving ample room for him to detail the realism that brought him to prominence.

If you love Atlanta stars and hip hop, you’ll definitely want to join us and AT&T in the ATL on Sept. 12- Sept. 14 for our three-day REVOLT Summit, which was created to help rising moguls reach the next level. Head to for more info and to get your passes now!

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