Once 6LACK had the freedom and backing to push out his creative vision under Love Renaissance (LVRN), it catapulted his career in the music industry.

Released in 2016, the R&B artist’s debut album, “Free 6lack,” went on to become certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). 6LACK’s Gold sophomore album, “East Atlanta Love Letter,” was a successful follow-up. What’s more, his album, “Since I Have a Lover,” is set to drop on March 24.

The Atlanta artist has had a successful run. However, his career journey was initially a long time coming.

During his guest appearance on “Way Up with Angela Yee,” 6LACK recalled the early stages of his career. He described the period of 2011-2016 as his “starving artist phase” when he was grinding to create and push his music out after dropping out of college — which led to him signing a bad record deal.

“In that process — it’s not having money and not having a job,” 6LACK shared with Yee. “And not because I couldn’t technically get a job if I wanted one, but it was more so I know that [music] is my job and it could pay for whatever I needed it to pay for. I just have to put in the work necessary.”

“And through that, I signed like bad record deals,” he continued. “Everybody does it. It was me and three of my friends. We in the room and the contract gets pushed across the table — no lawyer present. They’re like, ‘If you wanna be down, go ‘head and sign that.’ And we’re looking at each other like, ‘Let’s do it.’ We split like $5,000 between four of us.”

6LACK shared that the deal was meant to be $10,000, but the other half never materialized and basically “disappeared.” The bad deal resulted in him having to lay low for two or three years, moving strategically to get out of it. After building a community of fans and getting a lawyer, he was able to gain support to finally live as the artist he wanted to be.