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DC Young Fly: How Faith, Family, And Culture Inspired Growth

This interview was completed prior to the SAG Strike.

Before tragedy struck comedian DC Young Fly’s personal life, we had already interviewed him for the cover of our Culture Issue. Two months after the unexpected death of television personality, actress, and the mother of DC Young Fly’s three young children, Ms. Jacky Oh, MTV’s Wildin’ Out star has shown resilience by welcoming his new normal as a father who knows the uphill battle he faces and as a popular figure who continues to make audiences laugh when they need it the most.

DC Young Fly

Born in Atlanta, Georgia, DC Young Fly made a name for himself by filming and posting videos on the Vine platform in 2013. Vine was a short-form video service where users would post six-second-long videos, usually of comedic content. The social media platform is where DC’s comedic talent shined, and he soon became one of its most popular content creators. His online popularity proved to help amplify his visibility for his rapping career as well. In 2014, he released his debut song Westside Connections, and his second song M.A.P, followed by singles Right Now, and No Weed in 2016.

While growing his career, DC was named “Rookie of the Year'' on Wild ‘N Out in 2017 and went on to host MTV’s TRL. The comedian also starred in movies like How High 2 and was even listed as Variety’s “Top 10 Comics to Watch'' in 2019. Now, in 2023, DC is leaning on his early beginnings and upbringing to help him through his latest journey. The father of three has always been a family man who has kept his faith first, a faith strong enough to help the rising star become someone with his pulse on the culture.

“I am good, I am in a nice space right now,” DC said at the time of the interview. “I’m praying that my family is great, just staying focused on the craft and keeping genuine people around me,” he explained.

Knowing his circle has proved beneficial for the 31-year-old. His list of friends includes comedians Karlous Miller and Chico Bean, and the three are currently on their “Three-Headed Monster” comedy tour.

DC Young Fly

It was Atlanta that first introduced the young comedian to what it means to lead by example. Although the superstar in the making had no idea what life would have for him in the future, he still realized that he had a purpose to represent where he was from.

“ATL is in me. It is a part of the culture. We are the mecca of a lot of things,” DC explains his love for what many call “Black Hollywood." From influencing music and fashion, and with a mass migration of Black entrepreneurs, Atlanta is ranked eighth as the fastest-growing large city in the country.

“To be an Atlanta native is everything to me. Every time I leave, I want people to know I am from Atlanta, Georgia,” DC says. “I know I am not only representing me, but I am also representing everybody that is from here.”

And the culture and those who experience the complexities of it watch DC as he carries the weight of representation on his shoulders.

“Growing up, we didn’t really have many examples of folks we could look up to. I want people to know If I made it, so could they. There’s no question I didn’t get dropped off here, I grew up here,” he explains.

DC Young Fly

DC’s mission not only led him to serve up non-stop punchlines in movies, TV, and across comedy clubs but we also now see that he is letting those watching and listening to him see his vulnerability by showcasing his mindset. Every other day a viral video seems to be created on a podcast or radio talk show with him dropping gems. He has grown into a man who recognizes his importance in how culture continues to shift.

“There are people in my neighborhood who are actually proud of me,” DC says. He explains that fans who have come from where he has come from are quick to give praise and let them know they are proud to know him. DC is quick to return the love he receives by letting those who may believe they cannot achieve his level of success know that they too “are somebody.”

DC Young Fly

DC’s mindset began to form from childhood. Although he faced many hardships growing up, the mission was the same.

“I like being around positivity and people who can motivate me,” DC says about how he always felt as a kid. “I don’t like being around people who are complacent. I make sure my people are always doing something,” he explains. As much as DC is motivated by his surroundings, he also motivates those surrounded by him. The mindset of the comedic legend in the making has impressed and led him to work with the likes of Nick Cannon, Monique, Gabrielle Union, Danny Glover and more.

For the multi-talented star, remembering where he came from has always humbled him. Throughout his success, DC has continuously surprised audiences with his many talents, including his vocals, which he displayed at the 2022 Soul Train Awards while presenting an award. Even R&B superstar Tank approved of DC’s spontaneous vocal moment, giving it a standing ovation.

DC Young Fly

“I can never really forget where I came from. I am trying to make sure that I have more successful days than the days that I was really messed up. That's what I'm striving for,” DC muses. “I always look back to where I came from and that's how I stay humble because I know that I can always hit rock bottom.”

DC says he keeps God first to help him remain humble — if not for anyone else, for his kids. The father of Nova Whitfield, 6, Nala Whitfield, 2, and Prince' Nehemiah, 11 months, keeps his family first — being an example of what hard work looks like and can do. In the end, his three young children are teaching him important life lessons.

“They give me motivation because I have something to live for,” DC says about raising his kids. “You have to make sure you put your best foot forward.”

As the culture of fatherhood changes and the narrative continues to change for Black men, DC is leading the charge with his visibility and his vulnerability as a father.

DC Young Fly

“I don't mind showing my kids and showing people that I'm a father,” DC says. “I want Black men to know that it is okay to be a father because fathers don't get the recognition/acknowledgment that we need. There are a lot of great fathers out there.”

DC wants Black men to be viewed as kings, a mission he has been on since he began his career: doing his best to “lead by example.” The example that he keeps in mind is fighting for what he wants, keeping his faith, and putting his family first.

With four projects in the works, including the recently announced Hollywood Squares spinoff, Celebrity Squares. DC has been tapped to host the Black pop culture show that airs on VH1. The star will also be seen in the Eddie Murphy-helmed Candy Cane Lane, DC’s stardom continues to rise. And with his new journey after tragedy, remembering his why and early beginnings has prepared him to meet this moment, right now.

DC Young Fly

Photography: Dash McIntosh

Creatives: B Young Agency

Photo Assist/Videography: Wldfilmz

Stylist: PslmAtelier

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QG Web Graphics (8).png
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