These young brothers wowed the world with their freestyle skills and are now poised to become big names in hip-hop.
Before they became the hip-hop duo known as “The Hoodies,” rap star siblings Eben (aka E-Class) and Umar (aka Young Poppa) first made waves in a viral video where they rapped from the back seat of their mom’s car.
E-Class was then 19 and Young Poppa 11 when they impressed over 4 million viewers of their clip a few years back. Their freestyle performance was so impressive they drew the attention of Ellen DeGeneres.
The brothers couldn’t believe how huge the response to their video was. E-Class said at the time,
"Me and my brother almost cried when we saw it hit a million. I have no clue how that happened. We had other videos that got like 10 thousand but 3 mill was so mind-blowing to us."
According to him, his younger brother was only four years old when he started rapping. E-Class wrote the lyrics and the little boy would just rap them away. In the beginning, it all sounded gibberish but as Young Poppa got older, his wordplay and vocabulary improved.
The brothers grew up in a hip-hop environment. Born and raised in New York, they were exposed to the music by their mother, Tiffany Abrams who grew up in old school rap.
Shortly after the success of their video, they guested on “The Ellen Show.” They wowed the host’s audience by showcasing their talent. They even did a special rap number designed for the talk show host. They performed an original song written especially for her and it became the highlight of their appearance. Here’s the clip from their stint on Ellen in 2016.
Today the brothers are known as “The Hoodies” and are poised to do big things in rap music. The idea for the name came after the killing of Trayvon Martin who they believe represented the hoodie-wearing youth often being targeted. This prompted them to use the name “hoodies” and give it a positive spin.
Inspired by their rap idols which include 2 Pac, Nas, 50-Cent, Biggie, and others, the duo intends to be at the top of the rap game in 5 years.
“Not to sound cliché but we have the potential to bring the golden era back!”, they said.
Meanwhile, another 11-year-old recently stunned audiences at the BET Hip-Hop Awards when she freestyled like a professional rapper. Also once featured by Ellen DeGeneres in her show, Lay Lay is now a professional artist signed under Empire Records. She recently debuted her first album, “Cheat Code." This makes her the youngest rapper to have a record deal with the famous label.
Lay Lay, whose real name is Alaya High, began rapping when she was five. She was trained by her father who was into hip-hop. According to her, they would rap about anything –“Food, pots and pans, butterflies ― it don’t even matter. We just rap,” she says. Here’s a sample of her work.