Here are 5 facts that you might not know yet about Meek Mill
Wanna know more? Keep reading to find out more about the "Wins and Losses" rapper!
Meek Mill has become a public figure in the constant light of the social media habitat and hip hop lifestyle. This, along with his high profile relationships (especially with Nicki Minaj) and very public fights with other prominent rappers have made him appear in headlines for musical and non musically related reasons. He has also spent time in jail since his ascent to fame, and has recently been sentenced to 2 to 4 years of jail time.
1) Meek Mill was his nickname since he was a kid
Originally named Robert Rihmeek Williams, Mill took on the pseudonym when he started freestyling and rapping at an early age. In his hometown of Philadelphia, Meek Mill went through some tough moments as he lost his mom and dad. Meek Mill was forced to move around and stay with family and figure out how to make money for food. As his love for hip hop and music grew he began to participate in battles under the name. He soon went on to form the group "The Bloodhoundz" and went on to release four mixtapes with them. Meek Mill would go on to try to make it by himself releasing a tsunami of songs and mixtapes that would get his name out and start the process necessary for recognition. In this time, Mill was hit with the arrest that would frame and color his years of fame with legal problems. Mill was going to a corner store, and at the time he was armed. When the cops started to arrest him for posession and having a firearm, they began to fight. In the process Mill was beaten by the police and ended up with black eyes, cuts, bruises, and even had one of his dreads torn from his scalp. The pictures of Mill from after the arrest would go on to be a prominent image in his merchandise and albums, showing the brutality of the police and helping his cries for justice system reform.
2) Meek Mill is an advocate for criminal justice system reform
Mill's most recent sentencing had caused an uproar amongst the hip hop community at large due to it being seen as a gross miscarriage of justice in a time fraught with conflict between civilians, police, and the justice system as a whole, especially for poor individuals and very often for people with darker skin. He was sentenced to 2 to 4 years in prison for violating parole. Critics say that the rapper is being punished for a parole that was based on biased charges. His fans and other members in the community are fighting to overturn this unfair sentencing. Even legacy news have started telling the story of Meek Mill as a quintessential narrative behind young black men in the US and how the Justice System treats them. In a "Time" article, they lay out the case for Meek Mill's harsh sentencing, and the freedom and privilege that white accusers have and what is not tolerated in Hollywood.
...He’s been on [probation] since he was a teenager, all stemming from charges of gun and drug possession. What did he do wrong? He popped a wheelie on a motorcycle.
This shows how one mistake can cause an avalanche of effects-in all people-but that they are only magnified in certain populations. His life like many others was a fight against the police. In one arrest he was badly beaten and unfairly searched, leading to bruised eyes and torn hair. Since then, he has made his voice clear on police brutality and criminal justice reform.
While his older albums treat the subjects more from the personal lens, Meek Mill himself talking about his life and what he had to get through, the newer songs on "Wins & Losses" show a more nuanced look at the system as a whole, while still maintaining the furious energy that had become his trademark sound. His verbal onslaughts, as seen on songs like "Left Hollywood," seem to come from no where and the rapper may well be "conscious" but he still raps about the streets, about women, about his net worth, about Hollywood and drugs. In case you're looking, Left Hollywood is only available on the deluxe version of Wins and Losses.
3) His beef with Drake hasn't been his only hip hop controversy
This is just another example of a feud in which Meek Mill and another rapper have had a public beef and then put out diss songs.
As early as his hit single "Amen," Mill's career has been touched by controversy. He has also had a very public hip hop beef with Drake that resulted in hit songs, viral videos, and countless memes. If you really wanna know that the beef started and never left hollwood, that it was just drama for a sales, you should know that before he ever got into a lyrical battle with Drake he was getting into beefs with rappers like the Game, Cassidy, and even Kendrick! In the end this may be more indicative of his battle rap upbringing than anything, because the fueds always blow over, especially eclipsed by how often Meek Mill has been in and out of jail in the past years all at the height of his career and fame in the world of hip hop.
4) Meek Mill: Rapper and now studio founder
Wanna know something great? Meek Mill has launched his own record label imprint called "Dream Chasers Records." His label went on to sign rappers Loiue V. Gutta and the late Lil Snupe. This was all after having been signed earlier in his life to TI's label- Grand Hustle; and later on to Rick Ross' Maybach Music Group, further cementing his career ascension and acumen as a businessman not only commited to selling his own albums, but the albums of others he believe in, and applying his own taste in hip hop to choose rappers he personally enjoys and thinks will make good songs. In 2017, Dream Chasers Record announced it's newest signee- YBS Skola. The Baltimore rapper is on the come up and epitomizes a lot of the same things that Mill raps about. YBS Skola was in the same crew as the late Lor Scoota who was gunned down in Baltimore after leaving a celebrity basketball game. The parallels between this and MIll's life especially later on with Lil Snupe, are apparent. He has since released the his album earlier this year titled "Wins & Losses."
5) Meek Mill uses his power to help various communities
Meek Mill has started a tradition since the height of his career and continued it in his hometown of Philiadelphia for the past five years in which he gives out thanksgiving turkeys to those who might not be able to have them on their tables that year. He usually goes to various churches in the community and personally gives them out to his community members, but this year he was unable to. Still, from jail he will coordinate his teams to complete his objective and give out one thousand turkeys to several organizations. Even from the confines of a prison cell, Meek Mill still works to keep up his impact in the community and make sure his 5 year tradition doesn't stop for the inconvinience of jail.
The "Wins & Losses" rapper has been an ardent advocate of clean water and has personally donated over 50 thousand dollars to get clean water to the people of Flint. Following the death of his protege and friend- Lil Snupe- Mill has come out against the issues plaguing inner cities and causing the deaths of so many young men. Lil Snupe was gunned down at the age of 18 before he could even reach the height of his potential and release an album under Meek Mill's Dream Chasers label. On his 2017 single "Left Hollywood" Mill talks in depth about his journey and the changes in his lyrics are profound while his flow stays aggressive. The music video shows MIill in his old town of Philadelphia, the set is stripped down, just a kitchen and a stoop and some lights. This is what he has "Left Hollywood" for. Going home is a theme in many songs but for Mill is seems especially poignant considering he has been taken from his home repeatedly to serve time in jail.
This is a quick video if you wanna know more about the Flint water crisis.
Quick Facts About the "Wins and Losses" Rapper
His net worth has been approximated at around 3 million USD. His height is six one and a half inches or 1.88 meters tall. It has been a long time since he left hollywood, and he spends time between the studio, and, recently, in jail.
As much as we like to think justice is blind, our criminal justice system replicates the same bigotries at play everywhere else in the United States, including racism and sexism. Conviction rates for black men are higher than they are for white men. Funding for public defenders varies significantly by state, and while many of these lawyers are brilliant and dedicated public servants who do their best, they are under-funded and overworked nearly across the board. Other criminal defense lawyers border on negligent, and their clients suffer for it. Low-income and of-color defendants like a teenage Meek Mill was are at a huge disadvantage.
Meek Mill may have started out as a rapper that just rapped about what he knew, and at the time their were people who thought that he was glorifying a lifestyle of violence and drug abuse. Now, with the efforts of other rappers and writers and entertainers and thinkers, relations in the US have become more focused on the policies enacted many years ago that continue to have a detrimental effect on the lives of black people in the US. Now that there is more context for his story, the rapper's obsession with net worth is the direct result of the circumstances he was born into- a lack of intergenerational wealth that nudged him in the direction of illegal activity. Still, Meek Mill is currently in jail and this shows that even no height of fame or net worth can change the justice system's biases.
If an optimistic extrapolation can be made about Meek Mill's future, fans can hope that their efforts on the legislative front can successfully bring about an appeals process for his sentencing- and hope that something comes from that process. It is hard to trust this, but for now it is the only thing that Meek Mill fans can hope for, as the thought of a new project seems far away and distant. Some might even say we've already had our last Meek Mill project. Regardless, Meek Mill has shown he does not stop his fight to be free and his music will reflect his strength in this battle if and when he is able to record again.