By Jack Barnes
Putting on for San Francisco’s Fillmore District, a rich region in rap’s history, Lil Yee makes relatable music for those going through the everyday struggle. Preparing a collection of hard-hitting and aspirational street rap, Lil Yee announces Live 4 It, Die 4 It, his upcoming EP. The proper follow-up to his 2017 album Cita Son, Live 4 It, Die 4 It finds the young rapper expanding his style, moving beyond the traditional Mob music styles of his home neighborhood towards melodic trap and the snapping West Coast sound favored in L.A. and the East Bay. With production from FKI 1st, Zaytoven, Cassius Jay, Helluva, and YK of 808 Mafia, Yee’s upcoming tape is a freewheeling, pan-regional affair, and the San Francisco rapper crosses boundaries with his inimitable style. Featuring the flex-happy anthem “Designer Baby,” which released in July and has over 381k video views, and with appearances from E-40, Mozzy, Lil Pete, FMB DZ, and with a posthumous verse from The Jacka, Live 4 It, Die 4 It comes out on March 22nd via G-Affair/EMPIRE.
To accompany the announcement of the mixtape, Lil Yee shares “Red Eagle,” a poignant and sweetly-sung slice of street gospel. Reflecting on those he’s loved and lost, Yee rhapsodizes on the importance of staying true to yourself as life’s struggles mount: “Pray for me, if them demons get inside of me/Wait and see, would you come or would you glide for me?/Thankfully, I was blessed with a family/And everything I go and get is not a casualty.” In the video, shot in crisp black-and-white, Yee retreats into his city’s hills, offering panoramic vistas as he sings his heart out. Produced by plaintive grandeur by ATL sound architects Zaytoven and Cassius Jay, who provide airy keyboards and understated drums that add to the emotional heft of Yee’s lyrics, the HYPEBEAST-premiered “Red Eagle” is a formidable preview of what’s to come on Live 4 It, Die 4 It.
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Props to Cita Son
Gmbu Throwback: EP Stream: Lil Yee – Worse Comes 2 Worst [Audio]