For years upstart Philadelphia MC Meek Mill has walked the fine line between making a name for himself in the city as the next big rapper and maintaining his credibility in the streets. Meek has been cracking the pot known as the hip-hop game for some time, with minor stints alongside household rap names such as T.I. and breifly 50 Cent. But it wasn't until Mill aligned with Rick Ross and his Maybach Music Group when things began to take off. Recently Meek was tapped as the latest MC to join the prestigious Fab 5 fold where he spoke on his origins coming up in Philly and how his name came about.
"I was using that rap name when I was like 14, 15. But then, as I got older, 18, I started being in the streets. I ain't calling myself no millionaire running around the streets and I'm hurting, so I just ended up cutting it short to 'Meek Mill,' and I left it at that," he told MTV News.
Now, Meek is part of Rick Ross' Maybach Music Group and MTV Jams' 2011 Fab 5 lineup, and well on his way to the money.
Conceived on MTV Jams in 2005, the Fab 5 is a collection of the year's most outstanding new hip-hop artists who have made a visual impact on the road to releasing their debut albums. Fab 5 alumni include Juelz Santana, Tony Yayo, Paul Wall, Young Jeezy, Kid Cudi, Drake and 2011 inductees Big Sean and Future. This year, MTV Jams, MTV News and Sucker Free will bring you 2011's hottest new hip-hop upstarts, and Meek Mill is at the top of the list.
"Before this, I ain't have nothing I was actually chasing. I was just in the street living the life," Meek said. Now, the rap rookie has a starring role on MMG's Self Made Vol.1 compilation. Mill's performances on standout tracks like "Tupac Back" and "I'm a Boss" have made the rap world take notice and, in the process, have made MM a ton of fans.
"My fans love me, they love what I do. If I don't put out music for a long time, they anticipate all my mixtapes, they support me," he said. "That's why when I'm in the streets with my fans, if I can, I try to do everything that I can as far as how many pictures I take."