YFN Lucci is the stage name of Rayshawn Lamar Bennett, an American rapper from Atlanta, Georgia, who debuted on the hip hop field with his mixtape, 'Wish Me Well', which was released following a record deal with Think It’s A Game Entertainment. He owes his success to his friendship with Johnny Cinco, who first helped him with his emerging musical career. However, it is the single 'Key to the Streets' from his second mixtape 'Wish Me Well 2' which earned him recognition and popularity. He continued his success with his debut EP 'Long Live Nut', which contained the hit single 'Everyday We Lit'. He is currently working on his first studio album which is scheduled to release later this year. He is known for his sing-song style of rap, describing which he mentioned in an interview that he always had a high-pitched voice and stated that "If I can't rap it, I sing it." He has recently featured on Sean John's Holiday 2017/Spring 2018 'Dream Big' campaign.
Childhood & Early Life
YFN Lucci was born as Rayshawn Lamar Bennett on February 16, 1991 in Atlanta, Georgia, to Jamaican parents who had immigrated to the USA. He and his brothers were brought up by his single mother in a low income household.
As a child, he listened to a variety of music and was particularly influenced by R&B singers like Ashanti, rappers like the Hot Boys, and Ja Rule, who blended the two styles. Other musical artists who had a significant influence on him include Tupac Shakur, Lil Wayne, Jay Z, The Diplomats, T.I., Young Jeezy and Fabolous.
His first attempts to make music was by recording himself on a tape player his mom had purchased. By the time he was 9, he discovered his music talent while imitating his 12 years old older brother, who also became a rapper and goes by the name Jameela Asmar.
He experienced recording at actual recording studios when he was ten years old, and in his teenage years, developed his signature style: a mixture of serrated, gravelly street rap vocals and a dexterous singing voice. He gradually earned a small fan following in his native city, but it is the fellow Atlanta rapper Johnny Cinco who he credits for kick-starting his career.
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YFN Lucci developed a friendship with Johnny Cinco who encouraged him to pursue a musical career seriously and also helped him build connections in the Atlanta rap community. At the age of 17, he made his official debut after Cinco recruited him for two appearances on John Popi's 2014 mixtape.
He signed a record deal with Think It’s A Game Entertainment in December 2014 and released his debut mixtape, ‘Wish Me Well’, on 16th of that month. The album contained the tracks 'Made for It' featuring Backpack, 'I Wonder Why' featuring Skooly, and 'Know No Better', none of which managed to reach the US charts.
He got a breakthrough with his second mixtape, 'Wish Me Well, Vol. 2', released on February 16, 2016, which charted on the 'US Billboard 200', and also reached the top 20 of the 'Billboard Top Rap Albums' list. It contained the hit single 'Key to the Streets' featuring Migos and Trouble, which also had an official remix version featuring 2 Chainz, Lil Wayne and Quavo.
'Key to the Streets' was one of his first hugely popular tracks which peaked at No.70 on US 'Billboard Hot 100' and, on November 8, 2016, reached the top of the urban radio national chart. It was also included on 'XXL' magazine's '50 Best Hip-Hop Songs of 2016' list, as well as 'The 60 Best Songs Of 2016' list by 'Vibe' magazine.
In September 2016, he was featured on the cover of the 'Hidden Hip-Hop Gems of Summer 16' issue of the 'Rolling Out' magazine alongside artists like Migos, 21 Savage, Kap G, Young Dolph and Zaytoven. The following month, he was featured on rapper Meek Mill's track 'You Know', which reached No. 9 on the 'Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles' chart and was later included in his 'DC4' mixtape.
In August 2016, he was featured on Kayla Brianna's single 'Work for It'. The same month, he was featured on the song 'Dirty Game (Remix)' by fellow Atlanta rapper, late Bankroll Fresh.
Also in August 2016, he lent vocals on the single 'No Mind' by TK Kravitz and subsequently appeared on the music video for the song. The following month, he was featured on Lil Durk’s 'Rich Forever'.
On April 3, 2017, he released his first extended play, 'Long Live Nut', which debuted at No. 27 on the US 'Billboard 200' list. The EP contained nine tracks, including the instant hit single 'Everyday We Lit', and featured artists like Rick Ross, Dreezy, PnB Rock, Lil Durk, Boosie Badazz and YFN Trae Pound.
YFN Lucci debut EP 'Long Live Nut' has been his most commercially and critically successful album. It debuted No. 27 on US 'Billboard 200', and reached No.16 on 'Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums' chart and No.12 on Top Rap albums chart.
'Key to the Streets', the third single from his mixtape 'Wish Me Well 2', was his first hit single and was certified Platinum by the RIAA. 'XXL' magazine named it one of 50 best hip-hop songs of 2016, while 'Vibe' magazine ranked it at No. 56 on its 'The 60 Best Songs Of 2016' list.
'Everyday We Lit', the first single from his debut EP, 'Long Live Nut', reached No.33 on the 'Billboard Hot 100' and was certified Gold by RIAA. It also reached No. 12 on the US 'Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs' chart and No. 4 on the 'Billboard Rhythmic' chart.
Awards & Achievements
YFN Lucci was one of the artists featured on the '10 Hip-Hop and R&B Artists to Watch In 2017' list by 'Billboard' magazine in December 2016. He appeared on the cover of the 'Rolling Out' magazine's 'Hidden Hip-Hop Gems of Summer 16' issue in September 2016.
Personal Life & Legacy
YFN Lucci has a son and a daughter who often make appearance during his performances to steal the show with their dance moves, especially his daughter. However, he has not yet revealed any details about their mother and whether or not they are married.
He considers himself a law-abiding citizen and feels that everyone should respect the rules of the civilized society. He wants to be someone who does not involve in illegal activities and does not have debts.
On February 13, 2016, one day before Valentine's Day, he started a series of shady tweets in which he insinuated that he is close to Jerrika Karlae, the fiancée of fellow rapper Young Thug. Thug first responded indirectly by sharing pictures with Karlae as an indication of their closeness, and later accused Lucci of trying to clout up to him and mentioned he prefers to compete via music.
YFN Lucci's EP 'Long Live Nut' is named after one of his friends named Nut who has been one of his earliest and most ardent supporters.