In 2104, the Bay Area had hip-hop and much of R&B on lock thanks to DJ Mustard's production. His funked-out, minimalistic keys were everywhere on the radio and artists readily sang and rapped to his beats. TeeFLii, a newcomer from South Central, Calif. was one of them. Born Christian Jones, TeeFlii turns 28 years old today (July 17).

Before he made club hits, TeeFlii was a church-going child who sang and played multiple instruments. Christianity didn't provide lasting stability, though. TeeFlii was smoking by the age of 8 and eventually moved out of his parents house when he was just 13. By 19, he'd lost visitation rights to his child and was living in friends' livings rooms.

Before he hit 20, he started taking music seriously. He released his first mixtape, AnNieRuO'TAY 1, in 2012, and followed that up with a sequel and another tape, Fireworks, which featured production from DJ Mustard.

TeeFlii finally made the charts with 2014's "24 Hours," a jam that borrowed a bit from Jeremih's "Don't Tell Em" formula and got the ever-reliable 2 Chainz feature. The single was strong, but not strong enough to propel his debut album, Starr. The album didn't chart on the Billboard 200 and barely received any critical attention.

Despite the misfire, TeeFLii is still keeping busy. He's just released AnnieRuO'TAY 4 in June.

Watch TeeFLii's "24 Hours" Video Feat. 2 Chainz

See 20 Rappers’ & Singers’ Yearbook Photos You Won't Believe