June 17, 1979
Rapper, record producer, actor
Maylanium Muziq (2000-present)
overview and early life Edit
Christopher Bellard was born and raised in Los Angeles amidst the gang violence and the peak of gangsta rap in a crime riddled area in poverty which inspired his rapping career. Bellard is the cousin of actor/voice actor Shawn Fonteno, who voiced Franklin Clinton, one of the protagonists of Grand Theft Auto V. Maylay, in contrast, was another gangsta rapper riding through L.A.’s concrete boulevards, throwing Ws in the air and chasing the ghost of Tupac. From a young age, he gravitated towards hip-hop because it was relatable. “I was always a fan of N.W.A., Ice Cube, Eazy-E,all that,” Maylay says now. “But when King T had a record called Act a Fool, where [on the cover] he came out in a Cadillac on Dayton,he’s got on a khaki suit with a 12-gauge shotgun. These are the dudes I can look out the window and see. These are the dudes when I walk up the street, that’s what they dress like.”
As a teenager in the ’90s, Maylay forged friendships with King T and producer DJ Pooh, guys from the same streets who never gets enough credit for what they did for the West Coast. When Pooh would go into the studio with the likes of Snoop Dogg and Big Tray Deee, Maylay,then still a novice,would sit in the corner, quietly studying the process and plotting his own path. But life has a funny way of snatching away best-laid plans. Especially when you align yourself with a magnate whose skill set stretches across more industries than Howard Hughes.
Pooh scored a gig with Rockstar to serve as writer and co-producer on Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, the latest installment in a gaming series accused of corrupting more young minds than Miley Cyrus and Marilyn Manson combined. In a meeting with executives that touched on casting, Pooh called up Maylay and put him on speakerphone. Shooting the breeze without telling his protégé that anyone else was listening, Maylay had no idea he was being sized up for the project. “I wanted everything to be natural,” Pooh explained to him later. “I didn’t want you to put too much on it or be too laidback, I wanted you to be Maylay.”
Despite no prior acting experience, the emcee secured the part after several rounds of auditions, and was jettisoned to New York City to begin recording extensive amounts of voiceover. But even he hadn’t realized fully what he was getting himself into: “The script for the game was thicker than the Bible.” It was a workload to stretch even the patience of a VIEWS fan. Session after session, Maylay had to grunt, scream, and hiss to fully equip CJ with the sounds required for gameplay. Plus, dialogue needed to be recorded several times over to cover all bases. (If CJ gains too much weight in the game, for example, his voice changes.) “Some voice actors come in and they’ll record for four hours [a day], maybe,” he says. “I was in there maybe 10 to 12 hours.”
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas became the best-selling PlayStation 2 game of all time. Back home in L.A., a plan formed in Maylay’s mind. For years, he’d been sitting on a clutch of tracks, mostly classic west coast rap songs on top of middle-era Dr. Dre-style beats. Eager to parlay the success of the game into a music career, Maylay packaged his first release as San Andreas: The Original Mixtape in 2005. The cover played on the series’ familiar artwork. CJ dialogue was sampled throughout. The intro even saw him rap over the game’s theme music in full character. “I was like ‘why not’ for the simple fact that this game was where the majority of people knew me from,” he says now. “I’ll probably never sell as many records as they sold video games.”
Maylay dropped San Andreas: The Original Mixtape independently. He oversaw everything— from sourcing the beats to mailing out the completed CDs—because despite the game’s success, he was still a new artist with few resources. The tape was well received by rap bloggers, but by the time his second tape, The Real Coast Guard, came out in 2008, he was ready to step out of the GTA universe. He’d hooked up with DJ Crazy Toones and Westside Connection rapper WC on the former’s It’s A CT Experience, and the pair came on board to help take some of the creative weight.
Maylay’s artistry also grew. The CJ gimmick was out, and the songs came more fully realized. The Real Coast Guard saw him deploy more complex cadences over “What’s The Difference”-style horns. The record may not have launched him to that next level of stardom, but it was the statement Maylay wanted to make. “I was able to really kick back and be an artist,” he says. “Because before it was just business. When I did The Real Coast Guard CD, it became fun. WC and Crazy Toones helped me out a lot like that.”
It’s now over a decade since the release of San Andreas, and its themes seem more relevant than ever. Ferguson, Cleveland, New York, Minneapolis, Baton Rouge, and Tulsa have once again underlined the dangers of being born black in America. Maylay, a man who came up a stone’s throw from the L.A. Riots and raised on a solid diet of NWA, shakes his head when considering how little has changed.
Maylay said: “What messes me up about the whole thing is that police keep using the same excuse and it works. ‘He was reaching for a gun’, or, ‘He was reaching for his waist band’, or, ‘He grabbed my gun’. They say that shit every time. Nobody is stupid enough unless you’re really crazy to grab a policeman’s gun.”
Since the release of The Real Coast Guard, Maylay hasn’t stood still. His iPhone contacts now boast recurrent collaborator Ice Cube as well as DJ Premier, whom Maylay worked with on the legendary New York beatmaker’s 2010 compilation, Get Used To Us. Maylay’s next solo project, Hogg Tied & Duct Taped, has been teased for years, as the tracklist shifts under constant revision from its particular creator. A release date has yet to be announced, but there are some certainties: WC and DJ Crazy Toones will remain key creatives, and Maylay will stay independent. He wants to only look straight ahead, not back to his pixelated past. As even he concedes, “There’s not one video of mine on YouTube that doesn’t have somebody saying something about CJ.”
Does that make Young Maylay feel pride or frustration?
“A little bit of both,” he admits. “That game was so long ago, but at the same time I can’t be mad that more people know of me for being CJ than from being Maylay. The whole thing is they know me, period. I don’t see myself as CJ from Grand Theft Auto. But at the same time, I was involved with that game and there’s lot of people who love that game who now are fans of my music,people who wouldn’t even listen to rap.”
In an Instagram post of his,he expressed major hate towards Rockstar games,he said that he will never work for them again unless he gets paid a few millions. He also stated that he never publicly dissed them because he made money with them,implying that he always hated them.
Early days: 2000–05 Edit
His rapping career eventually took off in 2000. With help from King T, Maylay made his first appearance in Killa Tay's Thug Thisle, with the song #1 Hottest Coast (Killa Cali) in 2000. Later he appeared in Rodney O & Joe Cooley's Summer Heat in 2002. Since then, he has been featured on many releases across the West Coast. Maylay wrote the majority of King T's album Ruthless Chronicles. He founded his independent label in 2005 with the money from GTA San Andreas and released his debut album in the same year.
Pre-Lench Mob: 2006–08 Edit
In 2006, Maylay was featured in Deeyah's single "What Will It Be" with a music video. In the same year, he appeared in DJ Crazy Toones' CT Experience, it was the first collaboration of the trio DJ Crazy Toones, WC and Young Maylay. In 2007 the trio began working in Maylay's album The Real Coast Guard. The album was released in 2008 and later that year, WC signed Young Maylay to Bigg Swang/Lench Mob.
Lench Mob days: 2008–present Edit
Lench Mob Records were set in 2006 to put out Ice Cube's and WC's records, but later other artists were signed, like Young Maylay, who is considered a veteran by Ice Cube. DJ Crazy Toones created two blogs for Maylay, the first is called Who's Young Maylay? Mix Blog and the second is called Young Maylay, WC & Bad Lucc Mix Blog. Young Maylay is working on three albums, by himself, WC and Crazy Toones. Young Maylay is featured on two tracks by Ice Cube called Y'all Know Who I Am and Too West Coast on the album I Am the West. In 2010 Young Maylay was featured on two tracks on the album DJ Premier Presents Year Round Records - Get Used To Us. The track 'Temptation' is a solo performance while the track 'Ain't Nuttin' Changed (remix)' is a collaborative effort with Blaq Poet and MC Eiht.
In an interview, when asked about a new album, Maylay said:
Yeah, I'm working on an album. But I will not tell the title again! (laughs) And we gonna know when we're gonna drop it. But I got something that I wanna put out. I was gonna call it "Brushfires and Earthquakes", cause that's California all day. On the brushfire side I come with just straight heat spittin' . And then on the earthquake side I'm coming for that like to get out there in traffic and show you they got some sounds. But that's gonna be more or less like a mixtape. The album is in the works. I'm not trying to just take songs that I didn't use off my mixtape and put it on a CD and call it my album. I can't really put no timeline on it, we're working everyday. So it ain't the fact about getting songs done or nothing like that, timing is everything man.
grand theft auto: san andreas Edit
Maylay was working in New York when he received a phone call from DJ Pooh, who was in a meeting with staff from Rockstar Games. They started a regular conversation about music which, unknown to Maylay, occurred on speaker phone. Rockstar staff heard the conversation, and after conversation between the two ended, they encouraged Pooh to bring Maylay in to audition. A few weeks after the audition, Rockstar reviewed the tapes and decided on Maylay for the role of the main character of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Carl "CJ" Johnson.
In the game, Maylay starred alongside celebrities such as actors Samuel L. Jackson, James Woods, Peter Fonda, Clifton Powell, Faizon Love, Big Boy, David Cross, Andy Dick, Chris Penn, Danny Dyer, Frank Vincent, Sara Tanaka, Charlie Murphy and William Fichtner, rappers Ice-T, MC Eiht, Chuck D, The Game, Kid Frost and Yo-Yo and musicians George Clinton, Axl Rose and Shaun Ryder.
OBG Rider Clicc Edit
OBG Rider Clicc is Young Maylay's rap trio (with Young Dre The Truth and Killa Polk) the group first appeared in Young Dre's album called Revolution In Progress The Movement with the single Let's Get The Game Bacc Right. and later appeared with Compton Cavie, Dresta and BG Knocc Out with the song Wes Indeed in the Cali Luv mixtape.
independent studio Edit
Malaynium Muziq is Young Maylay's own independent record label based in Studio City, California. His mixtapes were released on this label.
mixtapes and albums Edit
- San Andreas: The Original Mixtape (2005)
- The Real Coast Guard (2008)
video games Edit
- grand theft auto: san andreas as carl "cj" johnson
- the introduction as carl "cj" johnson
- the brodies as mario
- dogstar: high school 2