Lloyd Polite Jr. (born January 3, 1986), better known by his mononym Lloyd, is an American R&B singer-songwriter, dancer and actor. Lloyd began his career in music as a member of the preteen-boy band N-Toon. The group disbanded in 2001 and Lloyd embarked on a solo career in 2003. Lloyd subsequently signed a recording contract with Murder Inc. Records (formerly The Inc.) and Def Jam Recordings. In 2004, Lloyd released his solo debut single "Southside", the title-track of his debut album, Southside. The single features Ashanti, and it quickly charted on the US Billboard Hot 100, and became a Top 40 hit. His second album Street Love, was released on March 13, 2007. It featured top-twenty hits "You" and "Get It Shawty".
Lloyd third album Lessons in Love, gave the singer his second top ten Billboard 200 album. Lloyd's career received an enormous boost in 2009–10 after being featured on the second single of Young Money's hit single "BedRock", gaining publicity from his presence on its guest list. Lloyd also released a 2009 EP entitled Like Me: The Young Goldie EP. On March 13, 2010, Lloyd signed to Interscope and Zone 4. His fourth album King of Hearts, was released July 5, 2011. The first single, "Lay It Down", became a top-ten hit on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs.
Lloyd Polite, Jr. was born in New Orleans, Louisiana on January 3, 1986 to Lloyd Polite, Sr. and Robin Lewis Polite. Lloyd grew up in the Calliope Projects in Central City, New Orleans. He then moved to Decatur, Georgia. In Decatur he found his desire to sing and later relocated to New York City where he met Irv Gotti.
2003–07: Southside and Street Love
In 2003, Lloyd was discovered and signed to Irv Gotti's The Inc. Records as a solo artist and released his debut album, Southside, on July 20, 2004. It debuted at number 11 on the US Billboard 200 and number three on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums charts, selling over the R&B singer Ashanti, managed to peak at number 24 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number 13 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Songs charts. The second single, "Hey Young Girl" was released in August 2004 and peaked at number 61 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. The third and final single, "Southside Remix" featured Ashanti and rapper Scarface. Later that year he featured on 8Ball & MJG's "Forever" and Tango Redd's "Let's Cheat". In 2004, Lloyd was featured on label-mate Ja Rule's "Caught Up"; the song saw minor success in the United States, reaching number 65 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. However, on the UK Singles Chart the song peaked at number 20.
The singer reentered the recording studios to begin work with producers Bryan-Michael Cox, James Lackey, Jazze Pha, Big Reese and Jasper Cameron and The Inc.'s 7 Aurelius. Released on March 13, 2007, Street Love debuted at number two on the US Billboard 200 and Top R&B/Hip-Hop albums charts, with sales of 145,000 copies emerging as Lloyd's highest debut and biggest first week. It eventually received a gold certification, and has sold over half a million copies domestically. The album's lead single, Jasper Cameron-penned "You", featured rapper Lil Wayne, was a big commercial success, becoming his first top ten single on the Hot 100. In addition, it reached the top position on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. The single reached number 45 in the United Kingdom and number 25 in New Zealand. The second single "Get It Shawty" reached number 16 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number four on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Songs charts. It also reached number 37 in the United Kingdom. The third and final single, "Player's Prayer", was released and peaked at number 74 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. The song was not promoted and didn't receive a music video. Later in 2007, he was featured on Huey's "When I Hustle" and Dem Franchize Boyz's "Turn Heads", both songs saw minor success in the United States, reaching number 80 and 75 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.
2008–09: Lessons in Love
Lessons in Love was released on August 4, 2008. "The title concept derives from a schoolboy fantasy of mine, where I become a professor of a classroom full of gorgeous girls, and I feel the best thing I can give them that's really worth having is lessons in love!" he said about the issues worked into the tracks. The album debuted at number seven on the Billboard 200 and number one on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums charts, with moderately successful first-week sales 51,000 — about half as many as his previous effort, number two album Street Love. "How We Do It (Around My Way)", featured rapper Ludacris, was released as the first single, peaking at number 77 on the US Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and number 75 on the UK charts. Due to the low success of the song, it only appeared on select versions of the album as a bonus track. The second single, "Girls Around the World", featured Lil Wayne and was a moderate hit. It peaked at number 64 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number 13 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Songs charts. The third and final single was "Year of the Lover". The single version featured rapper Plies. It only peaked at number one on the Billboard Bubbling Under R&B/Hip-Hop Singles.
In June 2009, it was announced that Lloyd would depart from The Inc. Records. Lloyd stated that he was "focusing on just growing in general". A song titled "Pusha", produced by The Runners written by Lloyd, Raymond "Ray-Ray" Gordon, Sean "Slim" McMillion, and The Monarch and featuring Juelz Santana was leaked online. Juelz Santana was later replaced on the song by Lil Wayne but later both verses were put together and was released as the lead single from his EP, Like Me: The Young Goldie EP. Lloyd also collaborated with Lil Wayne on the song "BedRock" which is the second single from Lil Wayne's record label Young Money compilation album. On March 13 it was confirmed that Lloyd signed to Interscope Records.
2010–2012: King of Hearts & The Playboy Diaries series
In May 2010, Lloyd teamed up with fellow New Orleans native Mystikal and recorded "Set Me Free". The video was shot primarily in the Calliope Projects of New Orleans. The song featured heavy brass sounds and a sample of "Unchain My Heart" by Ray Charles. On July 25, 2010, Lloyd announced via Twitter that his new album will be entitled King of Hearts. It was released on July 5, 2011 and on August 16, 2010, Lloyd released the first single entitled "Lay It Down". The second single was "Cupid" and the third single released was "Dedication to My Ex (Miss That)"; to date the single is Lloyd's biggest international hit peaking at number three on the Australian and UK charts. The song features André 3000 of OutKast and is narrated by Lil Wayne. The fourth single released from the album is "Be the One" featuring Trey Songz and Young Jeezy. The single was released on December 18 and the music video premiered as the Jam Of The Week on MTV Jams.
On October 29, 2012, Lloyd released his first mixtape The Playboy Diaries Vol. 1. It features Lil Wayne, August Alsina, Trae Tha Truth among others. In January 2013 Lloyd released a song called "Twerk Off" featuring rapper Juicy J and was produced by Drumma Boy.
2016–present: Tru and Out My Window
On May 6, 2016, he released his first single in five years titled "Tru", with the audio for the song released on YouTube 12 days later. On June 23, 2016 during an interview, Lloyd would reveal that he had signed a new distribution deal with Empire. Lloyd announced the release of his fifth studio album titled "Out My Window" on October 25, 2016. On November 7 Lloyd announced via his Instagram that he would be releasing a new EP before his album on December 9, 2016 titled "Tru".
On September 3, 2010, Lloyd cut off his signature long hair and donated it to charity. On July 6, 2011, Lloyd revealed a new tattoo of "Guns & Roses" that was tattooed on the back of his head. On March 14, 2016 it was announced and revealed that Lloyd had earned his GED certificate. In an August 2016 interview with Sway Calloway, Lloyd explains his hiatus through the lyrics of his song "Tru", expressing how he lost an unborn child to an abortion and that it "left a big hole", while also detailing other family issues.
While on a 2012 concert tour in New Zealand, Lloyd and several members of his entourage were interviewed by Auckland police over the vicious assault of a local father in front of children in a suburban playground. A witness to the incident had said Lloyd and his group had approached a couple earlier in the day looking for drugs. Local media reported Lloyd and his associates narrowly escaped prosecution, leaving the country the next day.