Jonathan “Lil J” McDaniel continues to inspire fans with his two new singles, “Like Me” featuring Bobby Luv, and “Dance Is on the House,” which debuted on the June 30 episode of “Hit the Floor” to 3.9 million listeners/viewers.
McDaniel plays German Vega in the VH1 series currently in its second season. The rap artist/actor’s latest album “Born a S.T.A.R.” and “Like Me” are available on iTunes and Google Play. “Like Me” is a collaboration with Compton, California’s Bobby Luv.
McDaniel started his career as a child, inspired by artists like Michael Jackson andTupac Shakur. By the age of seven, he was performing at his local K-Mart, collecting tips to produce his demo. Just a few years later, he launched his entertainment career with an impromptu appearance for LL Cool J at a Southern California record store autograph signing when he was just nine years old. His musical idol was impressed enough to invite him to join the older artist onstage that night at the House of Blues. McDaniel was soon sharing the concert stage with acts like the Fugees.
McDaniel’s talents were recognized by industry executives and he was soon inOrlando, working with Trans-Continental Records, star makers of the Backstreet Boys, N’Sync, and O-Town before being signed by Hollywood Records. His debut single, “It’s the Weekend” and his first album, “All About J”, were released in 2001.
The artist released several follow-up albums before expanding his repertoire to include acting and hosting. As Lil J, McDaniel hosted specials on Nickelodeon, featuring Avril Lavigne, Usher, and others. He parlayed a guest role as Raven Symone’s crush and boyfriend Devon on the Disney Channel hit “That’s So Raven,” which launched his theatrical career. McDaniel’s acting credits include appearances in “Nora’s Beauty Shop,” “Entourage,” “Cougartown,” “Detention,” and “Burning Palms.” The actor’s breakout dramatic role was in Robert Townsend’s “The Hive,” working with Michael Clark-Duncan, Vivica A. Fox, and Robert Gueveur Smith, which has aired on BET.
McDaniel performed in the June at Seattle’s KUBE Radio Summer Jam with artists including Rick Ross, Kendrick Lamar, and B.O.B. The actor/rapper is CEO of GENIUSCHILD, LLC and is appearing in the second season of VH1’s “Hit the Floor” with Dean Cain, Kimberly Elise, and Charlotte Ross as Coach Vega.