“Rising Chicago Rappers You Need to Know” – Complex
“Song You Need to Know: Lil Zay Osama, ‘Changed Up’” – Rolling Stone
“His ragged debut ‘Hood Bible’ became an Auto-Tuned manifesto for the streets and proved what Lil Zay could accomplish in quieter moments, with reflective music that felt more sorrowful about the past than anchored by tall tales.” – Pitchfork
“Looking at Osama’s career so far, you’ll see that forging his own path has made him into one of Chicago’s most well-known burgeoning rap stars. For nearly the last three years, Osama’s pensive street music has become the soundtrack to the city’s newest trap movement.” – DJ Booth
Lil Zay Osama’s music explores the duality of street life, oscillating from the visceral highs to the traumatic lows. The Chicago rapper explores the somber side of project life on “Have You Ever,” his latest music video. A choice cut from his new mixtape Trench Baby 3. The Tahj Money and TouchofTrent-produced “Have You Ever” finds Lil Zay Osama emoting over drippy pianos and plaintive guitar notes as he reflects on the sacrifices he’s made to live life by his strict moral code: “I did that bid and came back, took care of a kid that ain’t mine,” he rhymes. In the video, directed by LA_Production, Lil Zay Osama alternates scenes in his home neighborhood of Chicago with glimpses of his new life in L.A., as the artist luxuriates in his green coupe and reflects on the life he escaped.
“Have You Ever” is the latest video from Trench Baby 3, following recent clips for “Set Up” ft. Fredo Bang and “Chase ‘Em Down” ft. G Herbo. Trench Baby 3 is home to the recent hit “F*ck My Cousin, Pt. II,” a no-holds-barred collaboration between Lil Zay Osama and Lil Durk that is tearing up the streets in Chicago with over 8 million video views on YouTube, along with previously released singles like “Real Pain,” a moving ballad about the struggle, and “Glah Glah” (3 million views on YouTube), a hustler’s anthem named after Zay Osama’s signature ad-lib. Featuring additional appearances from PGF Nuk and Icewear Vezzo, Trench Baby 3 is available everywhere via Warner Records.
Lil Zay Osama’s visual ambitions extend beyond music videos–the South Sider conceptualized and starred in Trench Baby: The Series. Inspired by the mixtape, the four-part narrative YouTube TV show tells a tale of betrayal, survival, and revenge on the South Side of Chicago. Executive produced by Lil Durk and DJ Bandz, the full Trench Baby series is currently streaming on Zay’s YouTube channel.
Packed with trauma and triumph, Trench Baby 3 reaffirms Lil Zay Osama’s status as one of Chicago’s best. With over 00 million streams under his belt and coverage from the likes of XXL, Pitchfork, The FADER, Complex, Chicago Reader, Lyrical Lemonade, and more, the young rapper is only just starting his rise.
ABOUT LIL ZAY OSAMA:
Lil Zay Osama makes “pain music.” That’s what the South Side native calls his combination of raw, gripping lyrics and a passionate delivery. One of Chicago’s most captivating young voices, the 23-year-old pens heart-wrenching street narratives riddled with eulogies for tragically lost family and friends. With booming drums and poignant melodies, somber trap production scores Zay’s tear-stained memoirs, auto-tune accentuating the hurt embedded in every syllable. It’s a sound that’s resonated far and wide, yet these songs talk directly to those born in the trenches. Since he arrived in 2019, Zay has continued to touch fans. His music encapsulates his greatest strengths and the emotional impact of his heaviest songs conveying the callousness of Chicago street life. A departure from the more celebratory Hood Bible (2019), which Zay recorded while glowing from signing to Warner Records, his latest duology Trench Baby and the recent Trench Baby 2 distill decades of unsettling truths and hard-earned wisdom.Trench Baby 2 as well as the follow-up deluxe edition, which included an array of street hits from “Rumors,” “Ride for Me” (with Jackboy)” to fan-anthems “61st to 64th,” and “We’ll Be Straight.” A gifted storyteller and melodic virtuoso, Zay is able to maneuver between different moods from drill to trap ballads, earning him the praise of XXL, Pitchfork, HipHopDX, Complex and more.