Kid Ink in 2012.
|Birth name||Brian Todd Collins|
|Born||April 1, 1986|
|Origin||Los Angeles, California, U.S.|
Brian Todd Collins (born April 1, 1986), best known by his stage name Kid Ink, is an American rapper, singer, songwriter and former record producer. He is signed to RCA Records. He released the independent album Up & Away, an EP titled Almost Home, and his second studio album My Own Lane. The latter spawned the successful singles "Show Me", "Iz U Down", and "Main Chick". On February 3, 2015, he released his third studio album Full Speed, which spawned the successful singles "Body Language", "Hotel", and "Be Real".
2005–09: Record production
Kid Ink got his start in music as a teenager in after-school music programs making beats and learning about record production with another rapper from Africa named Lil Phil or Karma. He was inspired by producers Timbaland, Pharrell Williams and Swizz Beatz. He said: "These were artists and producers who were writing for other people in all types of genres. It just gave me an open ear for all different types of music and that's how I approached it." Following years of working as a record producer, Ink chose to pursue a career as a rapper full-time at age 22.
2009–12: Tha Alumni Music Group and Up & Away
After releasing his first mixtape, World Tour, under the name Rockstar, he started to gain some popularity. This grabbed the attention of DJ Ill Will who is connected with the hip-hop site, HotNewHipHop. DJ Ill Will then signed Collins to his independent label, Tha Alumni Group, and Collins changed his stage name to "Kid Ink". Then in early 2011, he released his first mixtape under his new name entitled Crash Landing, a mixtape that featured artists such as Roscoe Dash, Ty Dolla Sign, Meek Mill and more. At the beginning of the 2011 summer, he then released his second mixtape, Daydreamer, which was available for download on various sites that featured Cory Gunz, Maejor Ali, Ray J, Sean Kingston, Meek Mill Bow Wow along with others. In September 2011, he released his third mixtape named Wheels Up that featured artists 2 Chainz, Nipsey Hussle, Tyga and more.  Kid Ink released his first independent album, Up & Away on June 12, 2012 to moderate success. The album was produced by Ned Cameron and Jahlil Beats among others. It peaked at number 20 on the US Billboard 200 in its first week. The album's first single, "Time of Your Life" preceded the album's release in early 2012 followed by the album's second single, "Lost in the Sauce". On November 21, 2012 Kid Ink released his fifth mixtape, "Rocketshipshawty".
2013–14: Signing with RCA, Almost Home and My Own Lane
On January 4, 2013, he announced that he had signed a deal with RCA Records and premiered his first major label single, titled "Bad Ass" featuring Wale and Meek Mill and produced by Devin Cruise. The song would be released for digital download on January 22, 2013. The song was released to Rhythm Crossover radio in the United States on February 26, 2013. It has since peaked at #90 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number 27 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. On May 14, he announced his first project released under RCA, would be an EP titled Almost Home on May 28, 2013. It featured artists such as French Montana, Wale, Meek Mill, ASAP Ferg and Rico Love among others. Upon its release, the EP debuted at number 27 on the Billboard 200. It also produced the single "Money and the Power" which was featured in HBO's Hard Knocks and in the sports video game NBA Live 14 as well as being one of the official theme songs of WrestleMania 31. On September 17, 2013, he released the first single from his second studio album My Own Lane, entitled "Show Me" featuring Chris Brown and produced by DJ Mustard. On November 4, 2013, he revealed that My Own Lane would be released on January 7, 2014. On January 13, 2014, at Kid Ink's album release party, he was rewarded his first Gold plaque from the RIAA for his single "Show Me".
2015–present: Full Speed
On 9 September 2014, "Body Language", which features Usher and Tinashe, was released as the first single from his third studio album, Full Speed. The album was released on February 3, 2015, and has since peaked at number 14 on the US Billboard 200 album chart.
Kid Ink has dozens of tattoos on his face, arms, hands, and torso. He got his first tattoo when he was 16 and has been "addicted" to getting tattoos since. His favorites include portraits of his mother and grandfather on his chest and a tiger on the front of his neck, which represents his Chinese symbol.
Awards and nominations
|2014||MTV Europe Music Awards||Best Push Act||N/A||Nominated|
- Artist Biography by Andy Kellman. "Kid Ink | Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014-03-20.
- Markma, Rob (2013-01-04). "Kid Ink Inks Deal With RCA Records". MTV. Retrieved 4 January 2013.
- "Kid Ink - MTV UK". Retrieved 22 May 2012.
- Gustafson, Kyle (2012-05-07). "Kid Ink at Howard Theatre". Washington Post. Retrieved 8 May 2012.
- Patrick Ryan, USA TODAY 7 a.m. EST February 23, 2014 (2014-02-23). "On the Verge: Kid Ink embraces radio-friendly rap". Usatoday.com. Retrieved 2014-03-20.
- "Introducing Kid Ink: Rising L.A. Artist Talks Transition From Producing & Quick Notoriety". BallerStatus.com. 2012-02-13. Retrieved 8 May 2012.
- "Kid Ink "Up & Away" Cover Art, Release Date". Retrieved 8 May 2012.
- "Kid Ink Reveals ‘Up & Away’ Album Cover Art x Confirms Release Date". Retrieved 8 May 2012.
- Mixtape Release Dates: Joe Budden, Wale, Pusha T, Young Jeezy | Get The Latest Hip Hop News, Rap News & Hip Hop Album Sales | HipHop DX
- Kid Ink Signs To RCA Records | Get The Latest Hip Hop News, Rap News & Hip Hop Album Sales | HipHop DX
- "iTunes - Music - Bad Ass (feat. Meek Mill & Wale) - Single by Kid Ink". Itunes.apple.com. 2013-01-22. Retrieved 2013-06-03.
- "Radio Industry News, Music Industry Updates, Arbitron Ratings, Music News and more!". FMQB. Retrieved 2013-06-03.
- Paine, Jake (2013-05-14). "Kid Ink "Almost Home EP" Release Date & Cover Art". HipHop DX. Retrieved 2013-06-03.
- Nigel D. (2013-01-11). "Kid Ink ft. Chris Brown - Show Me (Prod. By DJ Mustard) » RealTalkNY Brought To You By Nigel D". Realtalkny.uproxx.com. Retrieved 2014-03-20.
- "Kid Ink - Show Me Feat. Chris Brown (Prod. By DJ Mustard) [Radio Rip] | Stream & Listen [New Song]". Hotnewhiphop.com. 2013-09-04. Retrieved 2014-03-20.
- "Twitter / Kid_Ink: #MyOwnLane January 7th!". Twitter.com. 2013-11-04. Retrieved 2014-03-20.
- "DJ Enuff Presents Kid Ink w/ Gold Plaque @ Webster Hall In NYC!! |". Deucetv.net. 2014-01-14. Retrieved 2014-03-20.
- "DJ Enuff Presents Kid Ink w/ Gold Plaque at Webster Hall in NYC". YouTube. 2014-01-13. Retrieved 2014-03-20.
- "Kid Ink Announces New Single "Body Language"". September 2, 2014. Retrieved April 15, 2015.
- "MTV Europe Music Awards 2014 - All this year's nominees and winners". Retrieved April 5, 2015.