“A play on low key” : Interview with Rapper Lilo Key

Below you will find Lilo Key’s track “Too Young” which came out a year ago and is currently at 437,000 views. That is actually how I found Lilo Key, when I was on the Rap Nation YouTube Channel.

I got in touch with Lilo and though it took awhile on both ends, first for him to email me back and then me to post it, but below you will find the interview we did.

How did you come up with your rap name?

Lilo Key is kind of a play on “low key”. I’ve been perfecting what I do for 10 years now. Working by myself. I never started with any industry connections or any hands offering help, so the name kind of symbolizes a rebirth for me. I started completely unknown, and built everything you see today by myself. I wanted my name to represent that.

How old are you?

I’m 24 years old. My birthday is Nov. 8th

Where are you from and how does that influence your music? 

I originally come from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and moved to New York City 7 years ago to get my degree in film making and begin my professional venture into the music industry. I like to think that Lancaster is where I was born, but New York is where I found myself. The melting pot of culture that NY is has had an enormous effect on my music, and how I grow up. Life, like New York, isn’t always pretty, but it’s authentic. That’s something that I always strive to get across in the music that I make.

Who exactly is Lilo Key?

I’m just someone with a passion for art, a relentless drive, and desire to build a life for myself that I’ve never directly seen in person. I grew up in a working class family, and see the depression and struggle that comes from the path of life we’re taught in school. I never wanted that for myself, or those I hold close to me. I also believe I have a gift for being able to vocalize to struggle that we all face as individuals trying to find our place in this world. I aim to use that gift to help those kids like me. Who grew up feeling like they didn’t belong.

How long have you been making music?

10 years

How much do you charge for a feature?

That’s for inquiring artists to find out on a case by case basis.

What’s the dopest thing to happen to you since you started making music and releasing product?

Being able to work with artists, and producers that I grew up idolizing has been an incredible blessing.

So has being able to connect with individuals around the world who I’d never have met in person through my music. It’s crazy to see that my experiences and words can effect someone so deeply.

One night a few months ago I had two fans drive 3 hours from Delaware just to meet me, because they said my music saved their life. That’s probably been the craziest thing that’s personally happened since starting this journey.

What did you do today?

Work. Constantly. I’m always working on new music. New videos. New designs for merch. Meeting with my team to prepare tours and determine the next chapters in the Lilo Key story.

Who are your biggest influences? 

Kid Cudi. He helped me through high school. I was always a fan of hiphop, and a kid that felt like I didn’t belong. I had never heard someone make music in the genre that I connected so personally with. Every time I would listen to one of his songs it was like he was talking to me directly.

My other influences are artists like Young Thug, Paul Simon, Johnny Cash, The Killers, Kevin Gates, Pharrell, and lots of other names.

I’m also always inspired by the work of film directors like Alfonso Cuarón, David Fincher, and Guillermo Del Toro.

Want to give any shoutouts?

Shout out to my family, and my girlfriend for putting up with my crazy self as I continue to pursue this seemingly impossible dream.

What is something about you people would be surprised to know?

I’m a fantastic chef. (Self proclaimed, but friends and family agree) lol.

Any new music coming out?

I’ve always got new music on the way. Be sure to check out my newest record, Lifestyle, produced by Cxdy. It’s available on Rap Nation and all major streaming services.

I’ve got my first headlining tour coming up in October, and will be traveling all over the east coast, so be sure to head over to LiloKey.com and grab tickets to the show closest to you. I hope to meet as many fans personally as I can along the way.

After I get back from that I’ll begin work on my debut album.

Thank you so much for giving me this opportunity and as always…

God Help The Rest.

Thanks for all the love and support thus far.

-Lilo Key

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