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Yung Lean

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Yung Lean
Yung Lean 2018.png
Yung Lean in February 2018
Background information
Birth nameJonatan Leandoer Håstad
Also known as
  • Yung Leandoer
  • jonatan leandoer127
Born (1996-07-18) 18 July 1996 (age 22)
Stockholm, Sweden[1][2]
OriginSödermalm, Stockholm, Sweden
Years active2012–present
Associated acts

Jonatan Leandoer Håstad[5] (born 18 July 1996[6]), better known by his stage name Yung Lean, is a Swedish rapper, singer, songwriter, fashion designer and record producer.

Born in Minsk, Belarus and raised in Södermalm, Stockholm, Sweden Håstad rose to fame in the mid 2010s, through the singles "Ginseng Strip 2002" and "Kyoto".[7] The then 16-year-old released his first debut mixtape Unknown Death 2002 in July 2013.[8] Håstad released his first studio album Unknown Memory in September 2014, to minor commercial success in the United States. He released two studio albums and mixtapes since then.[9][10]

Early life

Håstad was born on 18 July, 1996 in Stockholm, Sweden to Kristoffer Leandoer, a Swedish poet, fantasy author, and translator of French literature who owned a book publishing company[11] and a Russian mother who is a human rights activist working with LGBT groups in Russia, Vietnam, and South America.[12] Håstad spent his early childhood in Minsk, Belarus, where his mother moved the family so Håstad could have a similar childhood to her.

They returned to Sweden and settled in Stockholm when Håstad was somewhere between the ages of three and five. He was raised in the city's Södermalm district. Håstad grew up speaking both Russian and Swedish.[13] During his time in high school, Håstad often got in trouble for doing drugs or writing graffiti. He also had a job at a local McDonalds.[12] When he was 15, he was put on probation for smoking cannabis.[14]

In his youth, he began to develop an interest in hip hop music, mentioning 50 Cent's Get Rich or Die Tryin', The Latin Kings's Mitt Kvarter and Nas's Illmatic as his early influences.[15][16][17]


2012–13: Career beginnings, Lavender and Unknown Death 2002

In 2012, Håstad met Yung Sherman and Gud in a local Stockholm park and they struck up a friendship, discovering they enjoyed much of the same music.[18] Together with several other mutual friends they formed a group known as Hasch Boys. Another group of Stockholm artists who would later form the group Drain Gang were also member of Hasch Boys.[citation needed]

When many of the other members of Hasch Boys began to lose interest in the group, Håstad, Sherman and Gud broke off and formed the group "Sad Boys" as a trio.[19] By 2012, Yung Gud and Yung Sherman were producing and mixing music while Håstad had begun writing lyrics and recording vocals in a makeshift studio in his basement. They shared the music they made on the platform SoundCloud.[8][20][21] Sad Boys performed their first show in Gothenburg, Sweden on May 5, 2013.

Yung Lean became widely known when the music video for his track "Ginseng Strip 2002" went viral, exceeding 2 million views on YouTube.[22][23][24][25] That same year, he put out his first official releases: Unknown Death 2002 and an EP titled Lavender which includes the track "Ginseng Strip 2002" along with other songs that were cut from Unknown Death 2002. Consequence of Sound placed "Ginseng Strip 2002" at number 44 on their "Top 50 Songs of 2013",[26] while Vibe included Unknown Death 2002 in their list, "The 10 Most Overlooked Debut Rap Mixtapes of 2013", describing it as "a natural progression from the freely associative, often nonsensical rhymes of Lil' B with a keener sense of melody".[27]

In 2013, Yung Lean and Sad Boys toured throughout Europe. Later that same year, Acclaim Magazine had Yung Lean as their guest for a Q&A "smalltalk" segment, where they asked him about a wide variety of miscellaneous things, including his favourite hangover cure and his desktop wallpaper.[28]

2014–2016: Unknown Memory and Warlord

Yung Lean on the Black Marble Tour in Palisades in Brooklyn (July 2014)

In 2014, Yung Lean and Sad Boys embarked on the White Marble Tour, playing in 24 cities across Europe. Shortly after the conclusion of this tour Sad Boys announced a further Black Marble Tour, which would include several performances in cities across North America. The first of these shows took place in July at the Webster Hall in New York City, and was well received by writers for publications such as XXL, and The New York Times.[29][30][31][32][33][34][35][36][37]

Yung Lean starred on Studio PSL in May 2014[38] and was also one of five final nominees for the 2014 P3 Guld in the Hip Hop/Soul category.[39]

Yung Lean released his debut full-length album, titled Unknown Memory on 23 September 2014.[33][40][41] The album was accompanied with North American and European tours, beginning on 1 December in New York with a nearly sold-out show on Webster Hall's main ballroom stage.[42]

Yung Lean released his second full-length album, Warlord, on 25 February 2016; he also released a line of clothing, "Sad Boys Entertainment".[43] Håstad modelled for Calvin Klein's July 2016, AW16 Campaign.[44] During his Warlord American tour, his tour bus in Pennsylvania was shot at.[45] Håstad was also featured on Frank Ocean's critically acclaimed Blonde where he provided backup vocals on the song "Godspeed". According to Håstad, his part on the project was recorded when he was seventeen in Ocean's apartment in London.[46]

Yung Lean released a surprise track on 25 November 2016 titled "Hennessy & Sailor Moon (feat. Bladee)".[47] On December 14, 2016 he released the mixtape Frost God containing eight tracks including "Hennessy & Sailor Moon" and "Crystal City" which featured A$AP Ferg.

2017-Present: Stranger

Håstad released his third studio album Stranger on November 10, 2017, with the singles "Red Bottom Sky", "Hunting My Own Skin", and "Skimask", through Stockholm label YEAR0001.

In an interview with Complex in January 2018, Håstad announced he was writing several film scripts, including one based around Swedish serial killer John Ausonius, best known as The Laser Man.[48] In February 2018, Yung Lean released the single "King Cobra" with Thaiboy Digital, as well as a collaboration with Converse that consisted of a shoe and several items of clothing titled "One Star Toxic."[49]


XXL magazine included him in their 2014 list of "15 European Rappers You Should Know".[23] Fact magazine viewed the Unknown Death 2002 mixtape as "a logical continuation of Clams Casino and Beautiful Lou's innovative techniques, emerging with thick, melancholy numbers that drip with a rare and earnest allure."[50] In 2013, Fact published another article titled "Rise of the Sad Boys: from Kompakt to Yung Lean, a history of how electronic musicians have worn their sadness on their sleeves", which claimed that "[Yung Lean]'s mixtape Unknown Death 2002 is the epitome of sad rap".[51]

Yung Lean was described by Entertainment Weekly as "loosely affiliated" with the cloud rap movement.[52] According to music website HighClouds, part of Yung Lean's appeal is "the production provided by Yung Gud and Yung Sherman who combine the cloud rap of Clams Casino with electronic music touches".[53]

Yung Lean is also the vocalist for the punk band Död Mark, along with fellow Sad Boys member Gud.[54] The duo's debut album, Drabbad av Sjukdom was released in 2016 through Stockholm label YEAR0001.

Personal life


While recording his second studio album Warlord, Håstad lived in Miami Beach, Florida. During this time, Håstad became addicted to Xanax, lean and cocaine. On April 7, 2015, Håstad overdosed and was hospitalized in Mount Sinai Medical Center & Miami Heart Institute before moving back to Sweden to live with his family.[55]


Håstad has several hobbies, including reading, ceramics, and painting.[56] and playing piano.[57]


Studio albums



  1. ^ "Yung Lean's Second Chance". The Fader. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  2. ^ Kat Bein (26 November 2014). "Yung Lean, the 18-Year-Old Swedish Rap Star: "I Saw This Shit Coming"". Miami New Times. Retrieved 3 May 2016.
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ Perry, Kevin (8 August 2014). "Yung Lean: 'I'm not really into My Little Pony'". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 August 2014.
  6. ^ "Jonatan Aron Leandoer Håstad fyller år den 18 Juli". Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  7. ^ "Yung Lean känner sig inte hemma i svensk musik". 7 May 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2014.
  8. ^ a b Capell, Frances (2013) "Yung Lean Doer Is the Weirdest 16-year-old White Swedish Rapper You'll Hear This Week", Noisey (Vice), 23 April 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  9. ^ "Yung Lean says Warlord album drops this week, posts two song teasers". Retrieved 19 June 2016.
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Yung Lean Talks Converse, Painting, and the Insurmountable Downsides to Fame". Complex. Retrieved 2018-05-09.
  12. ^ a b Cooper, Duncan (16 June 2016). "Yung Lean's Second Chance". The Fader.
  13. ^ "Yung Lean Interview". Pigeons and Planes. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  14. ^ "Yung Lean Doer Is the Weirdest 16-Year-Old White Swedish Rapper You'll Hear This Week". Noisey. 2013-04-23. Retrieved 2018-09-23.
  15. ^ "Galore Crush: Yung Lean". Galore. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  16. ^ "Yung Lean's Second Chance". The Fader. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  17. ^ "The Cult of Yung Lean: 'I'm Building An Anarchistic Society From the Ground Up'". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 14 January 2017.
  18. ^ "Guide to Sad Boys : sadboys". 10 February 2014. Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  19. ^ Borrelli-Persson, Laird. "Swedish Rapper Yung Lean Talks Style and Shares His New Track "AF1's" Exclusively Here". Vogue. Retrieved 26 May 2016.
  20. ^ Shapiro, David (2014) "Yung Lean, King of the Sad Boys", The New Yorker, 14 July 2014. Retrieved 1 August 2014
  21. ^ Friedlander, Emilie (2014) "“Taking Arizona Iced Tea and Making It Cry”: An Interview with Yung Lean and the Sad Boys Archived 29 July 2014 at the Wayback Machine.", The Fader, 16 July 2014. Retrieved 1 August 2014
  22. ^ "Yung Lean – 16-åringen från Stockholm får världen att häpna",, 7 May 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  23. ^ a b "The New New: 15 European Rappers You Should Know", XXL, 9 June 2014. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  24. ^ "Видео: Кой шведски рапър трябва да чуете според "Мандо Диао"", Dnevnik, 4 July 2014. Retrieved 6 July 2014
  25. ^ "Yung Lean – Kyoto", YouTube. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  26. ^ Levy, Pat (7 December 2013). "Top 50 Songs of 2013". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved 8 July 2014.
  27. ^ Weinstein, Max (2013) "The 10 Most Overlooked Debut Rap Mixtapes of 2013", Vibe, 5 December 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  28. ^ Brent, Jonathan (2013) "Small Talk: Yung Lean: A #VERYEMOTIONAL Q&A With the Swedish Rapper Going Viral Right Now", Acclaim, 14 July 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  29. ^ Friedlander, Emile (2014) "Swedish Rapper Yung Lean Talks Gold, Phones in "Motorola"", The Fader, 19 February 2014. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  30. ^ Plaugic, Lizzie (2014) "Watch: Yung Lean – “Motorola” Video Archived 7 July 2014 at", CMJ, 19 February 2014. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  31. ^ Malik, Stephanie (2014) "Exclusive: Yung Lean & Sad Boys Team Up With Shallowww For a New Aesthetic", Bullett, 7 March 2014. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  32. ^ "Noisey Presents Yung Lean's First North American Show in New York City", Noisey (Vice), 3 June 2014. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  33. ^ a b Plaugic, Lizzie (2014) "Yung Lean Is Coming To America, Drops “Yoshi City” Video Archived 7 July 2014 at", CMJ, 18 June 2014. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  34. ^ "Yung Lean & Sadboys @ Cabaret Underworld", Métro, 5 June 2014. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  35. ^ "Yung Lean", The New Yorker. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  36. ^ Rys, Dan (2014) "Yung Lean Surprises With An Energetic Show In NYC", XXL, 10 July 2014. Retrieved 1 August 2014
  37. ^ Caramanica, Jon (2014) "From Neophyte to Pit Bull, in a Fun House Mirror of Hip-Hop Mannerisms", The New York Times, 10 July 2014. Retrieved 1 August 2014
  38. ^ "Se första avsnittet Studio PSL här Archived 9 May 2014 at", PSL, 9 May 2014. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  39. ^ "Nominerade till P3 Guld 2014: Årets Hiphop/Soul", P3 Guld Awards, 3 December 2013. Retrieved 6 July 2014
  40. ^ Raymer, Miles (2014) "Here's what you need to know about Internet-famous rapper Yung Lean", Entertainment Weekly, 5 July 2014. Retrieved 6 July 2014
  41. ^ Yung Lean YouTube Channel "[1]"
  42. ^ Friedlander, Emile (2014) "Yung Lean Announces Unknown Memory Tour", The Fader, 24 September 2014. Retrieved 4 December 2014
  43. ^ Tudela, Alex (5 April 2016). "Clothes From the Rapper Yung Lean, an 'American Psycho' Raincoat and Other Must-Haves for Spring". The New York Times. Retrieved 2 May 2016.
  44. ^ Dazed. "Calvin Klein AW16 campaign". Dazed. Retrieved 2018-05-09.
  45. ^ "Yung Lean's Tour Bus Shot At In Pittsburgh". HotNewHipHop. Retrieved 2018-09-23.
  46. ^ "Yung Lean talks about working with Frank Ocean". Retrieved 2018-05-09.
  47. ^ Renshaw, David (25 November 2016). "Yung Lean Shares Surprise New Song, 'Hennessy & Sailor Moon'". The Fader. Retrieved 26 November 2016.
  48. ^ "Yung Lean is writing a script for a "strange gangster drama"". The FADER. Retrieved 2018-05-09.
  49. ^ "Here's How to Buy Converse's Yung Lean "Toxic" One Star". Highsnobiety. 2018-05-09. Retrieved 2018-05-09.
  50. ^ "Mixtape Round-up: Main Attrakionz, DJ Mustard & Teeflii, Metro Zu, Yung Lean, and More", Fact, 12 July 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  51. ^ "Rise of the Sad Boys: From Kompakt To Yung Lean, a History of How Electronic Musicians Have Worn Their Sadness on Their Sleeves", Fact, 15 August 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2014
  52. ^ "Here's what you need to know about Internet-famous rapper Yung Lean". Entertainment Weekly's Retrieved 26 May 2016.
  53. ^ "I write raps not tragedies: Finally! The emo-goth-rap hybrid you didn't realise you were waiting for is here". HighClouds. 2017-04-10. Retrieved 2017-04-15.
  54. ^
  55. ^ "Yung Lean's Second Chance". The FADER. Retrieved 2018-05-09.
  56. ^ "Yung Lean gives us a look into his life on tour in China - Interview Magazine". Interview Magazine. 2017-11-23. Retrieved 2018-05-09.
  57. ^ "Yung Lean gives us a diary entry from the road - Interview Magazine". Interview Magazine. 2017-11-17. Retrieved 2018-05-09.

External links