Young M.A was born on April 3, 1992, in Brooklyn, New York. She began rapping at the age of 9 and further developed her talents over the next nine years, while she was residing in Virginia. She however has never stayed in one place for long, moving to several cities, in the South. At the age of 16, she moved back to Brooklyn.
When she was a child, Young M.A started rapping by a corner store when after a few years her music career started. She was self-funding a recording studio with local record producers working at Shake Shack and T.J. Maxx. In 2014 she gained notoriety when a Facebook post criticized her song "Brooklyn Chiraq"; the song then went viral. The post's author, pundit Boyce Watkins, said the song promoted "violent, negative, genocidal energy", but the controversy expanded Young M.A's name recognition and brought new listeners to her work. In 2015, Young M.A released a new song, called "Body Bag", which became a "YouTube hit" said Rolling Stone, along with the release of her mixtape called Sleep Walkin', which MTV describes as a "thoughtful debut project".
In 2016, Young M.A released her official debut single called "Ooouuu", which peaked at number 19 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. In September 2016, the song had nearly 7 million plays on Spotify and was widely remixed by other rappers and hip hop artists such as French Montana, Remy Ma, Jadakiss, Uncle Murda, ASAP Ferg, Bryan Mathers and Tink, all of whom were putting out their versions of the song. At Stereogum, Tom Breihan said "Ooouuu" was "a brash, intense, hard-as-fuck piece of rider music...the song feels like it marks the arrival of a major rap talent." The Fader said Young M.A has "establishe[d] herself as a quintessential New York MC", and at MTV, Doreen St. Félix said, "This summer, the atmosphere belongs to Young M.A and her single 'OOOUUU.'" The song's popularity drew attention from labels, though M.A remains an independent artist.
At the 2016's BET Hip Hop Awards, she did a freestyle on a cypher and performed her single, "Ooouuu", giving what XXL Magazine described as "show-stopping freestyle...one of the best freestyles of the night"; despite the enthusiasm for her performance, Young M.A expressed disappointment, saying BET cut out a portion of her performance.
In 2016, in an interview with Rolling Stone, Young M.A said she'd been offered the role of Freda Gatz, (who's name was originally supposed to be Betty Bars, because the role was made especially for her) on Empire, but turned it down, preferring to pursue her own career as a rapper instead of being known first as a fictional character. She even referenced being offered the role in her freestyle, "Check", rapping "Shout out to fox, trying to get me on that empire, at first I had to turn it down, wasn't up to par, cause it's Young M.A b****, F*** it's Betty Bars."
Young M.A is a lesbian, a topic that she includes in her music. She told Vogue that coming out had been an important point in her artistic development, saying "I held in being sexually attracted to women for so long that once I got that out of me, the music became easy." She also had a YouTube channel "Kat Kasanova"that discussed topics about relationships and lesbians.
She knew she was gay at age 9 and admits she felt out of place. She played football and hung around guys a lot as a child. Her mother would often try to get her to come out, but she would always deny it. She thought she wouldn't be accepted by her mother when she came out so she didn't and says that the music came easier when she was out. She said in an interview with The Breakfast Club,"I used to be scared to tell my mom's... because I knew my mom's wasn't the type of mother to be like "Oh i don't like you" or "I'm gonna ignore you", but part of me still was scared." She also said in an interview with Noisey raps, "Since I came out officially, that's when all the girls flopped, that's when it was a wrap", she laughed. She also said people "feel her more" because she's more comfortable.
|Title||Details||Peak chart positions|
|M.A The Mixtape||
As lead artist
|Title||Year||Peak chart positions||Album|
|"Body Bag"||2015||—||—||—||—||M.A The Mixtape|
As featured artist
Statik Selektah featuring Young M.A., Smif-N-Wessun & Buckshot)
(C.A.S.H Montana featuring Young Neez and Young M.A)
(Uncle Murda featuring Young M.A and Dios Moreno)
(Project Pat featuring Young M.A, Coca Vango and Big Trill)
|"Spend It (Remix)"
(Dae Dae featuring Young Thug and Young M.A)
- Shepherd, Julianne Escobedo (February 7, 2017). "Young M.A Still Isn't Compromising". The Fader. Retrieved April 6, 2017.
- Young M.A Was Once Lost But Has Now Found Her Way in Hip-Hop – XXL. Xxlmag.com (October 18, 2016). Retrieved on November 22, 2016.
- Young M.A. Talks Success of 'OOOUUU' & Opening Up for Beyonce. Billboard (October 17, 2016). Retrieved on November 7, 2016.
- Leight, Elias (October 30, 2016). "How Young M.A Became the Hottest Rapper in Town". Vogue. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- Caramanica, Jon Pareles, Jon; Chinen, Nate (August 26, 2016). "The Playlist: Thundercat Unplugs, Young M.A. Gets Remixed". The New York Times. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- Reeves, Mosi (September 27, 2016). "Young M.A: "OOOUUU" Star on Why She Turned Down 'Empire' Role". Rolling Stone. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- St. Félix, Doreen (August 17, 2016). "Young M.A: A Vibe Grows In Brooklyn". MTV News. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- Krishnamurthy, Sowmya (October 17, 2016). "Young M.A. on 'OOOUUU,' Destroying Female Stereotypes & Opening Up for Beyonce: 'I Always Knew I Would be a Star Someday'". Billboard. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- Iandoli, Kathy (September 11, 2016). "5 Rising Rappers Who Are Busting Up Hip-Hop's Boys' Club". Billboard. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- Breihan, Tom (September 21, 2016). "Young M.A Is A Bully And A Boss". Stereogum. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- Mayard, Judick (August 25, 2016). "Meet Young M.A, The Brooklyn Rapper Who Owned The Summer". The Fader. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- Robehmed, Natalie (March 27, 2017). "Why Rapper Young M.A Is Not Signing A Record Deal--For Now". Forbes. Retrieved 2017-05-13.
- Berry, Peter A. (October 7, 2016). "Young M.A Cops Crazy New Audi – XXL". XXL Magazine. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- Young M.A "Check" Freestyle Music Video - YouTube
- "Watch Young M.A. Discuss Relationships and Fake Lesbians on Her Old YouTube Channel".
- "Young M.A. – Chart History: Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved May 9, 2017.
- "Herstory – EP by Young M.A". iTunes Store. Apple. Retrieved April 27, 2017.
- "Young M.A. – Chart History: Billboard Hot 100". Billboard. Retrieved October 25, 2016.
- "Young M.A. – Chart History: Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs". Billboard. Retrieved October 25, 2016.
- "Young M.A. – Chart History: Hot Rap Songs". Billboard. Retrieved October 25, 2016.
- "Young M.A. – Chart History: Canadian Hot 100". Billboard. Retrieved October 18, 2016.
- "Hella Barz (feat. Young Neez & Young M.A.) – Single by C.a.$.H. Montana on Apple Music". iTunes. Retrieved June 30, 2016.
- "Thot (feat. Young MA & Dios Moreno) – Single by Uncle Murda on Apple Music". iTunes. Retrieved June 30, 2016.
- "30 (feat. Young M.A, Coca Vango & Big Trill) – Single by Project Pat on Apple Music". iTunes. Retrieved June 30, 2016.
- "Spend It (feat. Young Thug & Young M.A) [Remix] – Single by Dae Dae on Apple Music". iTunes. Retrieved December 9, 2016