Lil Yachty isn’t having a hard time adjusting to fame. Ask him about his life and he'll gush about its greatness like a kid in a candy story. Literally. In just the last year, the 19-year old Atlanta rapper has gone from being broke and unknown to shining on a multi-platinum Grammy-nominated single ("Broccoli") and being the face of Nautica and Urban Outfitters. He's been in Sprite commercials with LeBron James and remade "It Takes Two" with Carly Rae Jepsen for Target.
Yet for Yachty, one of the best perks of fame is being able to DM candy companies and immediately receive truckloads of Warheads and Gummy Bears. After all, he’s still very much a teenager, who first discovered Odd Future and Lil B when he was in Junior High. Like many of us, his favorite all-time songs mostly trace back to adolescence, when he was an outcast obsessed with video games and music, seeking out other idiosyncratic voices to empathize with.
As part of a series with Spotify, we spoke with the Lil Boat about the songs that meant the most him growing up—from glowed up drill like Chief Keef’s “Citgo” to guitar hero grunge like Smashing Pumpkins. Yachty’s own style might be most obviously indebted to Lil B, but he’ll just as readily admit his love of Coldplay and Fall Out Boy, Frank Ocean and Syd.
It’s the eclecticism expected from a kid whose initial musical infatuation was Andre 3000’s Love Below—first played for Yachty by his father, a renowned Atlanta photographer. A few of the tracks may seem melancholy, but Yachty insists those are just what he listens to fall asleep.
Listening to his selections allows you to understand why Yachty became such an immediate phenomenon: his diverse tastes reflect a kid who grew up in an era governed by mixtapes, streaming, and easy access to music. This is what the “King of Teens" listened to as a teen.
You can listen to Lil Yachty’s Music That Made Me playlist below.