Lil Dicky Professional Rapper
David Andrew Burd (born March 15, 1988), better known by his stage name Lil Dicky or LD, is an American rapper and comedian. He came to prominence with the release of the music video to his song “Ex-Boyfriend”, which went viral with more than one million views on YouTube in 24 hours. He released his debut album Professional Rapper on July 31, 2015. In 2018, his song “Freaky Friday”, featuring Chris Brown, became a worldwide hit.
Burd grew up in an upper middle class Jewish family in the Elkins Park neighborhood of Cheltenham Township, on the north border of Philadelphia. He attended Cheltenham High School. Speaking about his time in high school, Burd said “I was a pussy. I was really awkward looking. I wasn’t getting any girls at all, but I was very class-clownish and I got good grades.” After graduating from high school, Burd began attending the University of Richmond, where fellow 2016 XXL Freshman and rapper Dave East also attended at the same time. Burd graduated summa cum laude in 2010. He then relocated to San Francisco, California, where he worked in account management at the advertising agency Goodby, Silverstein & Partners. After reimagining his monthly progress report as a rap video, the company brought him to work in their creative department, where he wrote copy for ads such as the NBA’s “BIG” campaign.
Burd’s interest in music started when he was a child, listening to hip-hop music and alternative rock, Burd began rapping in the fifth grade after doing a history report on Alexander Pushkin using rap music. Growing up, Burd listened to Nas and Jay-Z mainly when it came to hip-hop and rap music.
Lil Dicky‘s style blends the comical with the relatable. According to Boston magazine, “Content-wise, Lil Dicky comes up with his material from everyday occurrences and everyday experiences. From there, he crafts his videos around those topics to create a visual narrative that accompanies his talent as an emcee. ‘It’s like a comedian. They are out in the world, and writing things down,’ he said. What followed ‘Ex-Boyfriend’ was a series of other videos that covered similarly average everyday experiences—songs about staying in for the night, songs about being a Jewish kid—he also has a rap battle with Adolf Hitler in one of his videos.”
Lil Dicky describes his style as a response to the excessive egotistical nature of rap today: “I really wanted to embody the exact opposite of that, and I think people are appreciating it. There just hasn’t been a voice for that normal dude when it comes to rap.” He added, “I think a lot of rap is just escalated to a place that many people can’t relate to… My niche is that I’m relatable. I don’t rap about going to the club and popping bottles.” In terms of his rapping skills, Lil Dicky is able “to manipulate words at an excessive speed, and weave rhyme patterns together in a way that’s funny while also making viewers want to rewind parts of his videos”.