Yung Raja boosted his popularity after appearing on "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon." The Singaporean rapper is known for his bilingual rapping, as he raps both in Tamil and English.
His latest single, "Mami," was played in one of the segments in the show. Though Jimmy Fallon did not enjoy the beats, the show opened up Yung Raja to a much larger audience.
In the comedic segment "Do Not Play" on the show, the Emmy-winning host poked fun at musicians who are not his favorite. Fallon held up the cover of the song "Mami" by Yung Raja.
He may not have enjoyed it, but in-house musician Questlove seemed to be grooving to the song. Jimmy Fallon playfully joked about the cover of "Mami," released in March, saying:
"Maybe he was at, like a spring break, something like that, with a bunch of buddies, sometimes you go 'look, you paid 25 bucks, you can sleep in the tub.'"
Fallon exasperatedly sighed while the music was playing, but the 26-year-old singer took the joke in his stride and commented about the clip on Instagram:
"I think jimmyfallon isn't a big fan of mami BUT HELLO WE MADE IT TO THE TONIGHT SHOW."
Who is Yung Raja?
Rajid Ahamed, aka Yung Raja, is a first-generation Singaporean. His parents relocated from Tamil Nadu, India, to the sovereign island city-state.
Before the 26-year-olds music career took off, he was an actor. The young star entered the entertainment industry at the young age of 13. While filming Ah Boys To Men 3L Frogmen, his fellow actor suggested that the actor enter the music scene.
Yung Raja released his debut single, "Mustafa," in 2018, which went viral. The song landed in third place on Spotify Malaysia's viral charts as soon as it was released.
In an interview with The Hindu, the rapper revealed that he could speak Tamil. He also said:
"I'm the youngest son in my family with three sisters, so everyone called me 'chinna thambi,'" which translated to 'young,' and I kept it as part of my name."
The artist has revealed that rapping was his way of telling a story. Yung Raja has also spoken about his experience with culture shock:
"As a Tamilian in Singapore, I was constantly questioning who I really was. At home, we spoke Tamil, and my mother wore a saree, but once I stepped out, I was an entirely different person."
The rapper shed light on how fluently he was speaking in Tamil at home, but once he stepped out, it was an entirely different language he had to interact in.
Ahamed also admitted to being a massive fan of Rajnikanth, the Tamil cinema acting legend. The young star had said:
"When I was little, I refused to eat unless my mother played Muthu or Baasha on television."
Yung Raja is currently a full-time musician and often performs around Asia. He recently signed with Alamo Records, based in the States, to gain a wider audience.
The song "Mami" is the first song released under this label, which also stood as the first single he released in 2021.