Pennsylvania-bred rapper Lil Skies is breaking free from the typical SoundCloud rap mold. Since childhood, the 20-year-old was spoke hip-hop before he even began speaking. Following in the footsteps of his father, Dark Skies, the biracial phenom is cultivating his own sound through catchy hooks, relatable bars and magnetic charm.
Prior to inking a deal with Atlantic Records, Skies built a digital buzz through his mixtapes, Good Grades Bad Habits 2 and Alone, as well as rendering a co-sign from popular YouTube star Cufboys. Yet, his true early peak wasn't until he dropped the visual for "Red Roses," which was directed by Cole Bennett, a favorite among many SoundCloud rappers.
On the brink of that success, the small-town emcee birthed "Nowadays," which became a viral hit even before his debut album, Life of a Dark Rose, dropped. In only a couple years, his fan base is well into the millions. In an unprecedented fashion, the young star even turned down a coveted spot on XXL's 2018 Freshman class. Yet, this didn't stop his grind in the least.
Skies appeared on Wiz Khalifa's album Rolling Papers 2, joined Lil Uzi Vert and Rae Sremmurd on tour and joined the lineup of Post Malone's first-ever Posty Fest. With accolades like this, the "Lust" emcee has made his mark as one of the best streaming-era artists thus far, but he's far from being finished.
Check out his full Incoming feature, above.
(Photo: Scott Dudelson/Getty Images)