This post might be the first time you’ve ever heard the name Bryson Tiller, but it certainly won’t be the last. The Louisville native is the hottest new sound in hip-hop. 18 months ago he was working at a Papa John’s and picking up shifts at UPS.
yo this is random but last year I had to borrow money for my daughters xmas gifts but because of yall, this year we xtra good. so thank you
— tiller (@brysontiller) December 14, 2015
His rise been swift, chronicled by ESPN’s new online vertical The Undefeated. The abridged version of Tiller’s rise to fame:
The most modern of artists, Tiller rose from the chaos of Soundcloud, emerged from a heated bidding war between Drake and Timbaland only to sign instead with RCA records, a label founded in 1929. Your favorite artists want to make music with Tiller – see Fat Joe and Fabolous and the Weeknd – he’s among the most buzzed-about new artists in music.
Tiller’s ascension came thanks to e-word-of-mouth. He leveraged Soundcloud’s 200 million users and extreme shareability into making his songs mainstream hits. Soundcloud is massively popular among teenagers. They gravitated to Tiller’s music and shared his songs across social media platforms all over the internet. Soon Don’t was charting on Billboard and a new army of rabid fans seemed to sprout from the Wi-Fi every day, hanging on to every one of his words.
His debut album with RCA, TRAPSOUL, went platinum within a month, streaming more than 600 million times worldwide. He sold out London’s KOKO (formerly Camden Palace) in a minute. It didn’t take much longer to sell out two nights at the Radio City Music Hall in NYC.
Kentucky’s music scene has exploded over the last two years. Even though you might only be familiar with Chris Stapleton and Sturgill Simpson, Tiller’s social media fame is unprecedented. Explore it, before you become the last person in your group of friends asking, “Who’s Bryson Tiller?”