With a smooth falsetto that recalls a young Michael Jackson, it didn’t take long for the preteen singer known as Mic Little to go from singing in church and at talent shows to auditioning for L.A. Reid and Jay-Z. He was born and raised in the heart of South Central Los Angeles, and Mic Little’s parents made every effort they could to keep their son out of trouble. With Charlie Wilson of the Gap Band and gospel great Daryl Cooley in his family tree, music seemed the way to go. Singing and performing came naturally to the youngster, and soon his cousin T-Low of the R&B trio Next took notice. T-Low brought his cousin to the attention of Walter “Lil Walt” Millsap, a songwriter/producer who had worked with Alicia Keys, Brandy, Mary J. Blige, and many others. Millsap thought his voice was shockingly similar to Michael Jackson during his Jackson 5 days, and influenced the young singer to switch from his birth name, Michael Johnson, to Lil Mike, which was eventually changed to Mic Little. A ten-song demo was cut with Millsap writing and producing, and it was presented to Def Jam. Def Jam bosses L.A. Reid and Jay-Z asked for a showcase, jumped on a plane, saw the singer perform in person, and offered him a contract on the spot. Fellow Def Jam artist Ne-Yo appeared on Mic Little’s debut single, the sweet “Put It in a Letter,” which landed at the end of summer 2006.
Listen to “Put It In A Letter” on iTunes