In August, Lay Lay made history when she landed a contract with Empire, which also distributed Kendrick Lamar’s 2011 debut album. The 11-year-old, who was born in Houston and rose to prominence on Instagram, told DeGeneres she inherited her freestyle chops from her father, who is a music industry veteran.
“I watched him a lot in the studio and it inspired me to rap also,” said the rapper, whose real name is Alaya High. “We rap about all types of stuff. Food, pots and pans, butterflies ― it don’t even matter. We just rap.”
Later, the talented tween ― who lists Migos, Cardi B and Rihanna among her favorite performers ― took to the stage to give DeGeneres and her audience a taste of her new album, “Tha Cheat Code,” out this week.
By the end of her song, however, Lay Lay got a surprise of her own when DeGeneres presented her with a special present from Rihanna.