DETROIT (Michigan News Source) – Rapper, songwriter, producer and social media personality Tray Little has a plan to revitalize the Detroit, Michigan neighborhood that he grew up in. Little has been rapping since his teens and then went on to produce his own music as well as becoming a social media star through TikTok with 1.4 million current followers.
Little’s father died to gun violence when he was four-year-old and he was raised by a teenage mother. He has achieved success by rapping about his personal experiences and life on the streets of Detroit. After the murder of George Floyd, Little used his TikTok platform to bring awareness to racial injustice and appeared in a video getting in between protesters and police, diffusing tensions during a Black Lives Matter protest in Detroit. He also had a popular song called “Mask Up” during the height of the pandemic which earned him acclaim.
Little has used his popularity and success to invest in the Detroit community, teaching entrepreneurial skills
and encouraging teens and adults to invest in themselves and also speaking in schools and juvenile detention facilities about setting goals.
Little’s latest project is revitalizing his childhood neighborhood back into a safe and prosperous community.
In an interview with The Detroit News, Little stood in front of his childhood home and said, “My overall goal
is to see this neighborhood come back…it’s not about me necessarily owning this house myself but it’s
about seeing it restored and not torn down, but seeing that somebody’s owning it and keeping up with it.”
He plans to buy the whole block. In fact, that’s the name of his campaign – it’s the “Buy the Block”
Little is looking to investors and developers to get the block built back up – and then he hopes to “see some schools in the neighborhood, some commercial properties in the neighborhood, some apartments where the people can afford it.”
In the interview, he talks about how special the neighborhood was to him growing up, with family and friends always stopping by his house, forming a community while they shared time, music and good food together.
Now that Little has gone back to tell everyone about his intentions, neighbors are surprised about his plans since he was such a self-described “rough kid” growing up. But he tells them he wants to turn the positives in his life into a success story for the block and give back.
Little says he’s committed to the project long-term and his goal is not only to help build the neighborhood but also to let the project be an inspiration to other neighborhoods. He said, “show that if we did it then they can do it as well in the other neighborhoods.”
A tweet he made on July 24th sums up his attitude and work ethic. He said, “When you realize nobody really cares about your problems you either gone cry about it or go harder. I choose harder