Donald Glover

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Donald Glover
Childish Gambino.jpg
Glover performing in 2014
Born Donald McKinley Glover
(1983-09-25) September 25, 1983 (age 31)
Edwards Air Force Base, California, U.S.
Other names Childish Gambino
Occupation Actor, writer, comedian, rapper, singer, record producer
Years active 2003–present
Musical career
Origin Stone Mountain, Georgia, U.S.
Genres Hip hop, R&B
Instruments Vocals, guitar, bass, drums, synthesizer, sequencer, sampler
Labels Glassnote, Island
Associated acts Ludwig Göransson, Jhené Aiko, Chance the Rapper, Kilo Kish, Azealia Banks, Trinidad James

Donald McKinley Glover[1] (/ˈɡlʌvər/; born September 25, 1983), also known by his stage name Childish Gambino, is an American actor, writer, comedian, rapper, singer, and producer. He first came to attention for his work with Derrick Comedy and subsequently became a writer for the NBC comedy series 30 Rock. He is perhaps best known for his role as college student Troy Barnes on the NBC series Community.

After several self-released albums and mixtapes, Glover signed to Glassnote Records in 2011 as Childish Gambino. He released Camp on Glassnote on November 15, 2011. His second studio album, Because the Internet, was released on December 10, 2013. Glover was nominated for two Grammy Awards in 2014, Best Rap Album for Because the Internet and Best Rap Performance for his single, "3005".[2]

Early life[edit]

Glover was born at the Edwards Air Force Base, California and raised in Stone Mountain, Georgia. His mother, Beverly, is a retired daycare provider, and his father, Donald, Sr., is a retired postal worker.[3] His parents also served as foster parents and are Jehovah's Witnesses.[4] Glover graduated from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts with a degree in dramatic writing in 2006, after attending DeKalb School of the Arts.[5]


2006–2010: Acting and music debut[edit]

From 2006 to 2009, Glover was a writer for the NBC series 30 Rock where he also had an occasional cameo appearance. He was presented the Writers Guild of America Award for Best Comedy Series at the February 2009 ceremony for his work on the third season of 30 Rock.[6]

Glover's stage name, Childish Gambino, came from a Wu-Tang Clan name generator.[7] He released an independent album entitled Sick Boi on June 5, 2008.

Glover is a member of the sketch comedy group Derrick Comedy, along with Dominic Dierkes, Meggie McFadden, DC Pierson, and Dan Eckman. The group wrote and starred in a feature-length film, Mystery Team, released in theaters in 2009.

On September 17, 2009, Childish Gambino released the independent album Poindexter. A pair of mixtapes entitled I Am Just a Rapper, and I Am Just A Rapper 2 were released in close succession in early 2010. Robert Scahill added his producing expertise helping with the majority of the tracks. The track listings for those mixtapes consist of the name of the song "he" raps, followed by the song he raps over. His second album, Culdesac, was set to be released on July 2, 2010, but a couple of last minute additions caused the album to be delayed for a day. The album was made available on July 3.[8] Glover has stated in interviews that on Sick Boi and Poindexter he felt he had to hide behind gimmicks, such as pink hoodies, but with his subsequent projects, he has touched on more personal subject matter, including family, schoolyard bullying, troubled romantic relationships, suicidal thoughts and alcoholism. He has disowned his 2005[9] album, The Younger I Get, as the too-raw ramblings of what he calls a "decrepit Drake."

Donald Glover at Paleyfest in 2010

Glover's stand-up special aired on Comedy Central on March 19, 2010. In May 2010, a fan suggested Glover for the role of Peter Parker in the then-upcoming The Amazing Spider-Man film, encouraging his supporters to retweet the hashtag "#donald4spiderman".[10] The campaign, originally started to see how far social networking could carry a message, quickly gained a large following.[11] The call for Glover to be allowed to audition for the role was supported by Spider-Man creator Stan Lee.[12] Comics writer Brian Michael Bendis, who announced an African-American version of Spider-Man a year later, said he had conceived of the character before Glover's campaign went viral.[13] Bendis gave credit to Glover for influencing the new hero's looks; on seeing him dressed as Spider-Man on Community (a nod to the campaign), Bendis said, "I saw him in the costume and thought, 'I would like to read that book.'"[14] Glover would later voice this incarnation of Spider-Man on the Ultimate Spider-Man animated series.[15]

Glover received the Rising Comedy Star award at the Just for Laughs festival in July 2010.[16] Glover was featured in Gap's 2010 Holiday ad campaign. Donald Glover DJs and produces his own music under the moniker "mcDJ" (pronounced "M-C-D-J"). His music is of the electronic/remix variety and is often made available for free download via his official site. His current album releases include Love Letter in an Unbreakable Bottle and Utterances of the Heart.

On December 1, 2010, Glover released the first track off of his EP titled "Be Alone". He released the next track, "Freaks and Geeks", as well as a five-song track list, on February 11, 2011. On February 25, Donald released the dates for the IAMDONALD tour and also his very first music video for "Freaks and Geeks".[17] The music video was shot by Dan Eckman, the director of the Derrick Comedy troupe. This song would later be used in an Adidas commercial featuring Dwight Howard which brought the song, and Donald, more recognition. On March 8, 2011 Donald released his newest EP via his official website.[18]

Childish Gambino in concert at the Bowery Ballroom in New York City (October 17, 2010)

2011–2012: Camp[edit]

On March 16, 2011, Glover hosted the mtvU Woodie Awards held live at South By Southwest. On March 24, 2011, Glover taped his one hour comedy special Weirdo for Comedy Central; it aired on November 19.[19][20] Donald appeared at the 2011 Bonnaroo Music Festival on June 9 in the 'This Tent' as Childish Gambino and June 11 at 'The Comedy Theater' with Bill Bailey performing stand up. Comedy Central streamed the comedy live on their website.[21]

On May 4, 2011, in an interview with TheHipHopUpdate, Glover revealed that he was working on an LP, to be released in September.[22] On July 25, 2011, Donald Glover announced that his new album would be titled Camp. On October 8, during his Orlando concert, he announced Camp would be released on November 15, 2011. On August 20, 2011, at the Los Angeles Rock The Bells concert, he gave an interview to, and announced to the crowd that he had signed with Glassnote Records.[23] On September 20, he released his first official single, "Bonfire".

The IAMDONALD tour made 24 stops in 34 days, beginning with Ames, IA on April 16, and finishing with Minneapolis, MN on May 19. In between, this included stops at music venues in Las Vegas, Houston, Washington, and Atlanta.[24] The Sign-Up Tour was Donald's next pre-album tour. He visited 11 cities over the course of 38 days in October and November 2011.[25] Glover made a website for the tour called "Camp Gambino" on November 19, four days after his album released.[26] The tour featured special guest Danny Brown and made 20 stops during the course of 32 days along a dates in California in December.[27] On March 14, 2012, several dates on the CAMP tour were postponed due to a fractured foot Donald Glover suffered on March 10, while performing in Tampa, Florida. The tour began in Austin, Texas on April 5 and ended August 10 in Hollywood, California.

On January 11, 2012, Childish Gambino announced on his website that a new mixtape would be coming out soon. On April 2, he released a new song, "Eat Your Vegetables and Fruits", through his website. On May 14, Funkmaster Flex premiered "Unnecessary," featuring Schoolboy Q. On May 16, Gambino released "We Ain't Them" through his website, produced by himself and frequent collaborator Ludwig. On May 22, Donald appeared on Das Racist's radio show "Chillin' Island" where he premiered a new song, "Tell Me," which featured Himanshu Suri, aka Heems from Das Racist. On May 26, Donald released "Black Faces", featuring Nipsey Hussle and produced by Boi-1da. On May 30, he released a third track, "Silk Pillow," featuring Beck and produced by both Glover and Beck. On June 25, Glover revealed that the mixtape was to be released on July 4, 2012. On June 26, Donald premiered another new track, on Sway in the Morning (on Shade 45), entitled "One Up," featuring his brother, Steve G. Lover. That same day, Donald stated that the mixtape would be titled Royalty despite previous statements that it would not be called that. On July 4, 2012, Glover released Royalty for free via digital download. On July 7, 2012, Gambino released the track, "Body," featuring Prodigy, which did not make the cut for the mixtape. On July 24, 2012, he released the music video for "Fire Fly" through his VEVO account on YouTube.

Donald Glover rapping as Childish Gambino in 2012.

On August 21, 2012, BBC Radio 1 premiered Leona Lewis' new song, "Trouble" off her upcoming album Glassheart, which features Childish Gambino. The song was available for purchase via iTunes on October 7, and peaked at #7 on the UK Singles Chart the following week, making it his first UK top 10 single. On November 4, 2012 Ludwig Göransson said in an interview with Portable that he and Donald were in his studio coming up with new ideas for the next album which was to be "bigger" and "with more people involved."[28]

2013–present: Because the Internet and Community departure[edit]

Main article: Because the Internet

In 2013, Glover signed on to create a music-themed show for FX titled Atlanta in which he will star, write, and executive produce. Consequently, Glover decided to reduce his work for NBC, and appeared in only five episodes of Community's 13-episode fifth season.[29][30][31] Although many TV stations were interested in picking up his half-hour comedy, he ultimately picked FX due to their willingness to work around his touring schedule.

On October 6, 2013, Glover announced on Twitter that his second studio album was completed.[32] He further announced this at Homecoming Week at Penn State, stating “I got a new album coming out soon, so this is the last time we’re gonna play a lot of this shit.”[33] On October 8, 2013, he announced its title as Because the Internet and revealed that it would be released in December 2013.[34] On October 21, 2013, Glover released the first single "3005", and announced a release date for the album as December 10, 2013.[35][36] On February 15, 2014, the rapper launched his Deep Web Tour in the UK. On February 27, Childish Gambino is scheduled to begin the United States portion of his tour with a gig at the Fox Theater in Oakland, California.[37] On June 6, 2014, RIAA certified Heartbeat Gold - making it Glover's first certification, and then on July 18, 2014, RIAA also certified 3005 Gold, making it Glover's second certification.[38]

On October 2, 2014, he released a new mixtape titled STN MTN, and the next day he released an EP titled Kauai. The mixtape and the EP follow the story that was last told in Because The Internet, and are meant to be a joint project instead of separate projects.

On October 10, 2014, Ubisoft revealed that they had collaborated with Glover to incorporate his song, "Crawl" into Far Cry 4.[39]

On December 5, 2014 Glover was nominated for two Grammy Awards. He was a contender for Best Rap Album for Because The Internet (Glassnote Records) and Best Rap Performance for his single, “3005.”[2]

On March 21, 2015 Glover won mtvU Woodies Award for Best Video Woodie for song "Sober" from his new EP Kauai.




Year Title Role Notes
2009 Mystery Team Jason Rodgers Also writer and executive producer
2011 Muppets, TheThe Muppets Junior CDE Executive Cameo
2013 To Do List, TheThe To Do List Derrick
2013 Clapping for the Wrong Reasons The Boy Short film; Also writer and executive producer
2014 Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day Greg
2015 The Lazarus Effect Niko[40]
2015 Magic Mike XXL Post-production
2015 The Martian Rich Purnell Filming


Year Title Role Notes
2005 Late Night with Conan O'Brien Criminal Episode: "July 22, 2005"
2006–2009, 2012 30 Rock Various 4 episodes; Also executive story editor and writer
2007 Human Giant College Webcam Guy Episode: "24 Hour Marathon"
2009–2014 Community Troy Barnes 89 episodes
2010 Robot Chicken Various voices Episode: "Robot Chicken: Star Wars Episode III"
2010 Comedy Central Presents Himself Stand-up special
2011 Woodie Awards Himself (host) Television special
2011 Regular Show Alpha-Dawg (voice) Episode: "Rap It Up"
2011 Weirdo Himself Stand-up special
2012 The Playlist Remix Victim - Eclectic Method Episode: "Instruments of Destruction"
2013 Girls Sandy 2 episodes
2013 Sesame Street LMNOP Episode: "Figure It Out, Baby Figure It Out"
2013 Adventure Time Marshall Lee (voice)[41] Episode: "Bad Little Boy"
2015 Ultimate Spider-Man Miles Morales/Spider-Man (voice) 2 episodes[42]
2015 Atlanta Earnest "Earn" Marks Also writer, executive producer[43]


Year Title Role Notes
2006 Channel 101 Various Characters
2006–2010 Derrick Comedy Various Characters Also writer
2007 Bronx World Travelers Scoopy Brown 3 episodes
2011 CollegeHumor Troy Barnes Episode: "Save Greendale"

Concert tours[edit]


  • IAMDONALD Tour (2010)
  • The Sign Up Tour (2011)
  • Camp Tour (2011–2012)
  • The Deep Web Tour (2014)


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "California Births, 1905 - 1995". Family Tree Legends. Pearl Street Software. p. 2. 
  2. ^ a b Lynch, Joe (5 December 2014). "Grammys 2015: And the Nominees Are…". Billboard. Retrieved 15 December 2014. 
  3. ^ Jensen, Bill (April 13, 2011). "Donald Glover Is More Talented Than You, The comedian/writer/rapper is on a collision course with stardom". 
  4. ^ The Daily Beast
  5. ^ "Donald Glover". NBC. 
  6. ^ "2009 Writers Guild Awards Television, Radio, News, Promotional Writing, and Graphic Animation Nominees Announced" (Press release). Writers Guild of America. December 8, 2008. Retrieved January 19, 2012. 
  7. ^ "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon". April 6, 2011. NBC. "Fallon: Childish Gambino is your name. And you got that from a...? Glover: Wu-Tang name generator. Yeah. Fallon: When did you get that? Glover: I think it was like sophomore year of college. We were all hanging out, chilling and drinking and then we were like, "oh, Wu-Tang name generator, let's put our name in." And we're putting them all in, and they're all funny and stuff, and then mine came up and I was like, "you guys, it's not funny anymore. This is something big." I just really liked it." 
  8. ^ "culdesac". Retrieved December 26, 2010. 
  9. ^ "Childish Gambino – ‘The Younger I Get’". Retrieved March 26, 2012. 
  10. ^ Glover, Donald (May 30, 2010). "You guys. Let's make this happen.". Twitter. Retrieved December 26, 2010. 
  11. ^ Sciretta, Peter (May 30, 2010). "Donald Glover Campaigns for Spider-Man Audition". /Film. Retrieved January 19, 2012. 
  12. ^ Lamar, Cyriaque (June 9, 2010). "Smilin' Stan Lee weighs in on Donald Glover for Spider-Man". io9. Retrieved December 26, 2010. 
  13. ^ Moore, Matt (August 2, 2011). "New Ultimate Spider-Man Is Half-Black, Half-Latino". Huffington Post. Associated Press. Retrieved August 5, 2011. 
  14. ^ Truitt, Brian (August 2, 2011). "A TV comedy assured new Spidey's creator". USA Today. Retrieved January 22, 2012. 
  15. ^ Truitt, Brian (August 26, 2014). "Spider-Man 'can be anybody' — and now he's Donald Glover". USA Today. Retrieved August 26, 2014. 
  16. ^ "Aziz Ansari & Donald Glover To Be Honored In Montreal". Access Hollywood. June 24, 2010. Retrieved December 26, 2010. 
  17. ^ Roberts, Steven (March 8, 2011). "Donald Glover Releases Untitled EP". Retrieved April 10, 2011. 
  18. ^ "iamdonald". March 8, 2011. Retrieved March 21, 2011. 
  19. ^ Carp, Jesse (August 17, 2011). "Community's Donald Glover Schedules Stand-Up Special Weirdo For Comedy Central". Cinema Blend. Retrieved January 22, 2012. 
  20. ^ "Comedian, Writer and Rapper Wunderkind Donald Glover Shows Off His Side-Splitting Stand-Up Style When the World Premiere of "Donald Glover: Weirdo" Debuts Saturday, November 19 at 11:00 P.M. ET/PT on Comedy Central" (Press release). Comedy Central. November 1, 2011. Retrieved November 24, 2011. 
  21. ^ Staples, Derek (May 27, 2011). "Comedy Central to webcast Bonnaroo Comedy Tent". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved January 23, 2012. 
  22. ^ "thehiphopupdate". May 4, 2011. Retrieved May 4, 2011. 
  23. ^ "Childish Gambino signs to Glassnote Records". August 22, 2011. Retrieved August 23, 2011. 
  24. ^ Jensen, Bill (April 13, 2011). "Donald Glover Is More Talented Than You". The Village Voice. Retrieved May 12, 2011. 
  25. ^ "Let's Go Camping". September 13, 2011. Retrieved September 13, 2011. 
  26. ^ "Camp Gambino". November 19, 2011. 
  27. ^ "Camp Gambino Dates". December 6, 2011. 
  28. ^ Morrow, Sean (1 November 2012). "Meet Ludwig Goransson: The Dude Behind The Music On Community, Happy Endings And The New Girl". Portable. Retrieved 1 February 2015. 
  29. ^ Itzkoff, Dave (July 9, 2013). "Donald Glover Reduces His Course Load on 'Community.'" Retrieved July 17, 2013.
  30. ^ Donald Glover to Create and Star in New Musical Comedy Series for FX | Culture News. Rolling Stone (August 6, 2013). Retrieved on December 10, 2013.
  31. ^ Donald Glover To Create And Star In Music-Themed FX Comedy Series Project. Retrieved on December 10, 2013.
  32. ^ Childish Gambino Reveals That Sophomore Album Is Done. Retrieved on December 10, 2013.
  33. ^ Childish Gambino Kicks Off Homecoming Week. Onward State (October 7, 2013). Retrieved on December 10, 2013.
  34. ^ Childish Gambino to release new album Because the Internet this winter. Consequence of Sound (October 8, 2013). Retrieved on December 10, 2013.
  35. ^ Mayorga, Dean. (December 3, 2013) Childish Gambino "because the internet" Release Date, Cover Art & Album Stream | Get The Latest Hip Hop News, Rap News & Hip Hop Album Sales. HipHop DX. Retrieved on December 10, 2013.
  36. ^ iTunes - Music - 3005 - Single by Childish Gambino. (October 22, 2013). Retrieved on December 10, 2013.
  37. ^
  38. ^
  39. ^
  40. ^
  41. ^ Webb, Charles (October 12, 2012). "Cartoon Network Announces 'Adventure Time' Fifth Season, Return Of Neil Patrick Harris". MTV Geek. Retrieved October 14, 2012. 
  42. ^ USA Today
  43. ^ The Hollywood Reporter

External links[edit]