When Shad Moss marched onto the hip-hop scene under the moniker Lil Bow Wow, armed with killer rhymes, his signature cornrows and the conviction of his peers, who were 10 years his senior, it’s safe to say he came out the gates swinging. Following the blueprint that many of his contemporaries have left behind, such as Michael Jackson or Destiny’s Child, the adolescent quickly grew from teenage heartthrob to the brilliant multi-hyphenate that we see today. Moss, a native of Columbus, Ohio, may have gotten his start as the protege of Jermaine Dupri and Snoop Dogg but at 35, the “Bounce With Me” rapper has carved his name in the entertainment industry as a formidable adversary to be reckoned with.

Moss stopped by Blavity News to discuss his latest collaboration with Polaris Slingshot as part of their “Make Your Mark” series, the impact of social media on his career and the value of being authentic in his art.