“LIl Mexico is up next in South Carolina” – ELEVATOR
Grays Court, South Carolina native Lil Mexico is from a town with a population of fewer than 1,000 people. Now, the rapper makes songs that reach millions of people across the globe. “My environment definitely influenced my music. I’m always rapping about stuff that I’ve done, things I’ve seen, or what’s been goin’ on around me,” the 22-year-old notes. “It’s real street here, but it’s real country too. There are trailer parks and farms all around.” Although his world may seem atypical to many Rap videos, Mexico has resonated with an audience over the last couple of years. December 11’s Life Of An Outlaw, produced by JetsonMade (DaBaby, 21 Savage, Smokepurpp), retraces the story of how Mexico and his MMO crew banded together to make a way out of a small town with limited opportunity.
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Raised by his mother while his father was incarcerated over several bids, Mexico earned his name from his complexion. Although small, the trailer park in Grays Court that cultivated the rapper is racially diverse. The son of a Black father and white mother, the artist’s friends joked that he resembled the neighboring Latinos. Coined “Lil Mix-ican,” he used the teasing to his advantage when he released “Forever” just after graduating high school in 2017. While he’d dabbled in Rap since adolescence, this time, Mexico took a step beyond burning a CD-R for friends to play in the car. He shared it online for the mass public. The song’s subsequent visual showed the community of Grays Court and a collection of homeboys with a mentality not unlike the Wild West. “Our group goes by MMO. The meaning behind that is Money-Makin’ Outlaws,” he says of the notorious band of locals that he calls his brothers. Influenced by Lil Wayne, the rapper enjoys displaying his charisma in visuals and filling verses with punchlines. Within weeks, the song had gained traction on Facebook to achieve more than 100,000 views.
More tracks followed. “I came with a song called ‘Fully Loaded,’ and it started going crazy—even more than ‘Forever.’ I thought that maybe if I take this seriously, I can become somebody.” Mexico began performing his songs at clubs for a few hundred dollars. The Trench Baby mixtape series was born soon after, spawning hits including video single “Trap Boys” (featuring Guap Da Menace and Muddy), which now has nearly 4 million video plays.
On some of those tapes, Mexico purchased beats from JetsonMade. “I love his music; it’s got a spaceship vibe,” he notes of his hit-making partner behind DaBaby’s “Suge.” For his biggest MMO release to date, the two rising stars from the Carolinas partnered for a full-length body of work. On Life Of An Outlaw, Atlanta sensations Lil Gotit, Lil Keed, and Yung Mal each appear.
Mexico’s music celebrates running around, living fast, and reflects for those not here to enjoy it with him, including a sizable prison following. Songs like album opener “Nobody Knows” tell stories over captivating beats. Meanwhile, “Act Up,” featuring Keed, warns haters not to try him. A Mal-assisted version of “Trap Baby” takes the viral hit even further with a newly-released video. “I’m not just rapping about anything and everything,” he boasts of the 10 songs with accompanying visuals. “I make music that you can leave on or just play every day as you ride around.” Lil Mexico is taking his real, raw small-town story on a journey to Rap stardom.