At heart, YG is an everyman rapper to the core. He doesn't completely crowd the mind with a ton of abject wordplay like his Compton compatriot Kendrick Lamar, but instead crafts pop-rap tunes that bite with far more believable menace than, say, Rick Ross.
Photos courtesy of Universal Music Group/Island Def Jam
His first major effort came in 2009 with L.A. singer Ty Dolla $ign on the "find 'em, fuck 'em and flee"-espousing underground hit "Toot It & Boot It." Soon after he inked a deal with fabled New York label Def Jam Records but his career stalled thanks to a burglary conviction, the date of which he commemorates on the cover of his new album. But since his release, YG's blunted tone in tandem with West Coast producer/current radio kingpin DJ Mustard has forced Def Jam's hand through a series of buzzworthy mixtapes, culminating in his chart-topping March debut My Krazy Life.