Smino

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Smino
Smino 2016.jpg
Smino performing in October 2016
Background information
Birth nameChristopher Smith Jr.
Also known asC. Smi
Born (1991-10-02) October 2, 1991 (age 27)
St. Louis, Missouri
Genres
Occupation(s)
  • Rapper
  • record producer
  • singer
  • songwriter
InstrumentsVocals, drums
Years active2011-present
Labels
Associated acts

Christopher Smith Jr (born October 2, 1991), better known by his stage name, Smino, is an American rapper, singer, songwriter and record producer from St. Louis, Missouri. Smino is the founder of the musical collective Zero Fatigue with Bari, Monte Booker, Jay2, and Ravyn Lenae.[2] He is also a member of the hip-hop supergroup Zoink Gang, with J.I.D, Buddy, Guapdad 4000, and EarthGang.[3] Smino is signed to Downtown Records and Interscope. Smino initially gained local recognition in 2012 where he released a mixtape called Smeezy Dot Com, and a collaboration mixtape with Bari called Retail. In 2015, he released two EPs: S!Ck S!Ck S!Ck and blkjuptr.[4]

His debut studio album, blkswn was released to critical acclaim on March 14, 2017.[5] His second studio album, NØIR, was released on November 8, 2018.[6]

Early life[edit]

Chris Smith Jr. was born in St. Louis, Missouri into a musical family: his father plays keys, his mother sings, and his grandfather played bass guitar for Blues Hall of Fame musician Muddy Waters. Both his father and grandfather were given opportunities to take their music far, but they gave up their success to be with their families. When he was seven, his father gave him a set of drums, which he played in his church's band, and also began rapping. He later moved to Chicago, Illinois for college under the wing of his older cousin, singer Drea Smith.[7][8]

Musical career[edit]

2012-16: Career beginnings and various projects[edit]

In 2012, Smino went by the stage name C. Smi, and was in a rap duo with his friend Bari Allen called "Young Dumb and Outta Control" (YDOC), where they released a mixtape titled Retail. They started to gain popularity locally but had a hard time getting their music out into the world. Smino then released his first solo mixtape, Smeezy Dot Com, and moved back to Chicago. At Columbia College Chicago, he met engineer Chris "Classick" Inumerable, who became his closest friend and is now his manager.[9][10]

On October 2, 2015 Smino released his first EP, S!Ck S!Ck S!Ck.[11][12] On December 11, he released his second EP titled Blkjuptr.[13] On July 31, 2016, Smino appeared on Noname's mixtape, Telefone, with Saba and Phoelix on the track "Shadow Man".[14] On August 17, it was announced that Smino will be alongside Mick Jenkins on the A Quest For Love Tour. On October 27, he made another guest appearance on Bucket List Project on the song "World in My Hands".[15]

2017: blkswn[edit]

Smino at Lollapalooza in 2016

On December 2, 2016, Smino released the title track to serve as the first single from his debut album, blkswn, which was released on March 14, 2017. The release date holds a special significance to the St. Louis rapper because 314 is the area code of his hometown. The album includes guest appearances from Ravyn Lenae, Bari, Noname, theMIND, Jay2, Via Rosa, Drea Smith, and Akenya, with production coming from Monte Booker, THEMpeople, Sango, Phoelix, and J. Bird.[16]

Following the album's release, he headlined in his month-long Swanita Tour, which included 22 dates with guests Monte Booker, Jay2, Bari, and Jean Deaux.[17] On July 6, it was announced that Smino and Ravyn Lenae will be opening for SZA on The CTRL Tour.[18] He later released music videos for "Anita", "Netflix & Dusse", and "Wild Irish Roses". During October, he was opening act for T-Pain on his Acoustic Tour, who appeared on the remix for "Anita".[19][20]

2018–present: NØIR[edit]

In April 2018, he and Monte Booker co-headlined the Kouple Drillz Tour which included shows in Asia and Australia.[21] On May 17, he released a single called "New Coupe, Who Dis?" featuring Mick Jenkins.[22] He also appeared on some of his frequent collaborative producers tracks, Cam O'Bi on "TenderHeaded", Phoelix on "Taranphoeno", and Sango on "Khlorine".[23] On July 9, he released a remix to Drake's "In My Feelings", and a track called "Coupe Se' Yern" produced by himself.[24]

On October 26, 2018, Smino released a single titled "L.M.F." produced by Sango, accompanied by a music video.[25] Smino released the album's second single titled "Klink" on November 4, announcing it via an Instagram post.[26] His second album, NØIR, was released on November 8.[27] The album includes guest appearances from Zero Fatigue members, Bari, Jay2, and Ravyn Lenae, as well as Dreezy, and Valee. The production came from himself, Monte Booker, THEMpeople, Sango, Phoelix, KRS, Al B Smoov, and Da-P.[28] In 2019, Smino announced the Hoopti Tour, which included 33 shows in England, the United States, and Canada.[29] Supporting acts for the tour will be EarthGang and Phoelix.[30] On April 3, 2019, Smino released the music video for "Z4L", directed by Ev Solomon and produced by AJR Films, with clips of backstage footage on tour.[31]

Artistry[edit]

Influence[edit]

Smino describes his sound as futuristic funk and soulful rap. He grew up listening to a lot of jazz, gospel, and hip hop, with rappers including Busta Rhymes, Ludacris, Nelly, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony and Field Mob. Smino names Kanye West and André 3000 as his biggest musical influences, as well as his cousin, Drea Smith.[32] In an interview with Pitchfork he stated, "I grew up in the church, so it was a bunch of gospel along with Musiq Soulchild, Em, T-Pain—just a bunch of soulful dudes that are country. My first favorite rapper was Ludacris."[11]

Musical style[edit]

Scott Glaysher of Exclaim! described his music is a "mix of smart rapping and crowd-pleasing, futuristic R&B grooves."[33] Jay Balfour from Pitchfork said he focuses "on his incredibly versatile voice within a warm palette of sludgy R&B and neo-funk" and "throws a million different voices into the mix."[34] Rolling Stone said "his rap makes room for southern R&B and imperfect harmony singing; the drums are inevitably cooled out, like nth-wave neo soul."[35]

Other ventures[edit]

Zero Fatigue[edit]

Smino is a founder and part of a musical collective and record label called Zero Fatigue with Monte Booker, Jay2, Bari, Ravyn Lenae, Elton "L10MixedIt" Chueng, Chris "Classick" Innumerable, and Nosidam. The collective's origins began when Smino met Classick at Columbia College Chicago, who owned a recording studio in his house in Chicago and later became his manager. Interning for Classick, engineer and mixer L10MixedIt Chueng met Smino in that studio where they began working together.[36] Unofficial members and affiliates of the collective include Jean Deaux, Drea Smith, and Phoelix.[37]

Fashion[edit]

On April 5, 2018, Smino unveiled his design of satin-hooded hoodies called "Silk Pillows", named after his song of the same name. After it went viral on Twitter, he explained the design saying "I made these satin for people with hair who like napping in hoodies."[38] The hoodie address the problem of waking up with messy or damaged hair.[39][40]

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

List of albums, with album details and selected chart positions
Title Album details Peak chart positions
US
[41]
US
R&B/HH

US
Rap

blkswn
NØIR
  • Released: November 8, 2018
  • Label: Zero Fatigue, Downtown Records
  • Format: CD, digital download, vinyl
191

Extended plays[edit]

Title Album details
S!Ck S!Ck S!Ck
  • Released: October 2, 2015
  • Label: Zero Fatigue
  • Format: Digital download
blkjuptr
  • Released: December 11, 2015
  • Label: Zero Fatigue
  • Format: Digital download
4sport[42]
  • Released: July 9, 2018
  • Format: Digital download

Mixtapes[edit]

Title Album details
Smeezy Dot Com
  • Released: April 25, 2012
  • Format: Digital download
Retail
(with Bari Allen)
  • Released: June 15, 2013
  • Format: Digital download

Singles[edit]

As lead artist[edit]

List of singles as lead artist, with showing year released and album name
Title Year Album
"blkjuptr"[43] 2016 blkjuptr
"Oxygen"[43]
"blkswn"[44] blkswn
"Anita"[44] 2017
"Anita (Remix)"[45]
(featuring T-Pain)
Non-album single
"Netflix & Dusse"[44] blkswn
"Wild Irish Roses"[44] 2018
"L.M.F."[25] NØIR
"Klink"[26]
"Z4L"
(featuring Bari & Jay2)
2019

As featured artist[edit]

List of singles as a featured artist, showing year released and album name
Title Year Album
"Kolors"[46]
(Monte Booker featuring Smino)
2016 Soulection White Label - Monte Booker
"World in My Hands"[47]
(Saba featuring Smino & LEGIT)
Bucket List Project
"TenderHeaded"[23]
(Cam O'bi featuring Smino)
2018 Grown Ass Kid
"TROOP"[48]
(tobi lou featuring Smino)
non-album single
"Khlorine"[49]
(Sango featuring Smino)
In The Comfort Of
"Bad Boys"[50]
(Pivot Gang featuring Saba, Joseph Chilliams, MfnMelo & Smino)
2019 You Can't Sit With Us

Guest appearances[edit]

List of non-single guest appearances, with other performing artists, showing year released and album name
Title Year Other artist(s) Album
"Touch The Ceiling" 2012 Bari Allen YDOC
"Money Man"[51] 2015 NAPALM Life as a Bachelor
"Money Like a Pastor"[52] Gdot Markee, Corban Josiah Chicken Money
"Don’t Kall My Name"[53] Jean Deaux non-album single
"XYZ"[54] 2016 Jean Deaux non-album single
"Shadow Man"[55] Noname, Saba, Phoelix Telefone
"No Cape"[56] Sean Deaux Vice City 2
"Kompany"[57] 2017 Monte Booker, Phoelix non-album single
"The Run Around"[58] 2018 Ambi Lyrics Study Hall
"Taranphoeno"[59] Phoelix, Jean Deaux TEMPO
"Intrigue"[60] Bari Allen The Prefix
"Ace"[61] Noname, Saba Room 25
"Exhale"[62] Kemba non-album single
"Blood on My Hands"[63] 2019 August 8 non-album single
"1993"[64] Buddy, Cozz, EarthGang, J.I.D, J. Cole Revenge of the Dreamers III
"Sacrifices"[64] EarthGang, J. Cole, Saba
"Dork"[65] Jay2 4 Tha Wait
"Eternal"[66] Chance the Rapper The Big Day
"Anonymous"[67] Cousin Stizz Trying to Find My Next Thrill
"LA Lisa"[68] SiR Chasing Summer

Music videos[edit]

As lead artist[edit]

List of music videos as lead artist, showing year released and director(s)
Title Year Director(s)
"blkjuptr" 2016 Jacob Chavez[69]
"Anita" 2017 Jean Deaux[70]
"Netflix & Dusse" The Calmatic[71]
"Anita (Remix)"
(featuring T-Pain)
N/A
"Wild Irish Roses" 2018 Jean Deaux[72]
"L.M.F." N/A[73]
"Z4L"
(featuring Bari & Jay2)
2019 Ev Solomon[74]
"Klink" Smino, Nicholas Woytuk[75]

As featured artist[edit]

List of music videos as lead artist, showing year released and director(s)
Title Year Director(s)
"World In My Hands"
(Saba featuring Smino & LEGIT)
2017 Tom Vin
"TROOP"
(tobi lou featuring Smino)
2018 Glassface
"Khlorine"
(Sango featuring Smino)
Glassface
"Sacrifices"
Dreamville featuring EarthGang, J. Cole, Saba)
2019 Scott Lazer, David Peters, and Chad Tennies[76]

Tours[edit]

Headlining
  • Swanita Tour (2017)
  • Kouple Drillz Tour (with Monte Booker) (2018)
  • Hoopti Tour (2019)
Supporting

References[edit]

  1. ^ Madison, Taylor. "Smino: Meet the Midwest MC Behind One of the Summer's Coolest Love Songs". Rolling Stone. Retrieved May 24, 2017.
  2. ^ "hicago's Very Own: Zero Fatigue". Medium.
  3. ^ Duck, Steve. "Interview: Keanu Beats is the Producer Reppin for Australia on 'Revenge Of The Dreamers III'". Complex. Retrieved 26 July 2019.
  4. ^ "Smino News". DJ Booth.
  5. ^ Tanzer, Myles (March 8, 2017). "Smino Announces Debut Album 'blkswn'". The Fader.
  6. ^ NOIR by Smino, retrieved 2019-04-02
  7. ^ Mahadevan, Tara. "Smino is making a midwest musical moment". Noisey.
  8. ^ Burney, Lawrence (May 13, 2017). "Smino Isn't Singing to Himself Anymore". Noisey.
  9. ^ "Meet Smino, the rapper about to put St. Louis back on the map". Pigeons and Planes.
  10. ^ Frazer, Wes. "Meet Smino, The Deeply Loyal Rapper Putting His People First". The Fader. Retrieved May 5, 2017.
  11. ^ a b Drake, David. "Zero Fatigue: Chicago's Next Hip-Hop Visionaries". Pitchfork.
  12. ^ Moore, Jacob. "Listen to Smino's 'S!CK S!CK S!CK' EP". Pigeons And Planes.
  13. ^ "Smino Releases Debut Video "Blkjuptr"". HipHopDX.
  14. ^ Daramola, Israel (August 8, 2016). "Noname: Telefone Album Review". Pitchfork. Retrieved August 9, 2016.
  15. ^ Mench, Chris (October 27, 2016). "Stream Saba's New Project 'Bucket List'". Complex.
  16. ^ Pickens, Ashley (March 8, 2017). "Smino Wants To Reflect A New Light On St. Louis With Debut Album 'blkswn'". Vibe.
  17. ^ Ketchum III, William E. "'I Know Exactly What I Want': St. Louis Rapper Smino on New Album 'blkswn' and Focusing on What Comes Next". Billboard. Retrieved May 24, 2017.
  18. ^ http://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/hip-hop/7857764/sza-ctrl-tour-dates
  19. ^ http://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/hip-hop/7940883/t-pain-acoustic-tour-dates
  20. ^ https://www.hotnewhiaphop.com/smino-lands-t-pain-for-the-anita-remix-new-song.1976074.html
  21. ^ http://handsometours.com/tours/smino-x-monte-booker/
  22. ^ Kim, Michelle. "Smino "New Coupe, Who Dis?" [ft. Mick Jenkins]". Pitchfork. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
  23. ^ a b "Cam O'bi - TenderHeaded [ft. Smino]". Retrieved January 23, 2018.
  24. ^ "Smino shares two-song single, 4sport, including Drake remix: Stream". Consequence of Sound.
  25. ^ a b "Smino drops new single "L.M.F."". The Fader.
  26. ^ Williams, Aaron. "Smino Smoothly Announces The Title And Release Date Of His Upcoming Album With A Fire Freestyle". Uproxx.
  27. ^ "Smino Announces "NØIR" Tracklist Featuring Bari, Jay2, Valee & More". HotNewHipHop.
  28. ^ Strauss, Matthew. "Smino Announces Tour". Pitchfork. Retrieved 18 January 2019.
  29. ^ Findlay, Mitch. "EarthGang To Join Smino On Upcoming "Hoopti" Tour". HotNewHipHop. Retrieved 18 January 2019.
  30. ^ Williams, Aaron. "Smino's Exuberant 'Z4L' Video Details Wild Tour Shenanigans With Bari And Jay2". Uproxx. Retrieved 3 April 2019.
  31. ^ C. M., Emmanuel. "The Break Presents: Smino". XXL Magazine.
  32. ^ Glaysher, Scott (March 20, 2017). "Smino - Blkswn". Exclaim.
  33. ^ Balfour, Jay (November 12, 2018). "Smino - NOIR". Pitchfork.
  34. ^ Leight, Elias. "By the Time Smino Releases an Album, He Already Hates It". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 3 December 2018.
  35. ^ "Meet L10MixedIt, the Engineer Behind Chance The Rapper, Noname & Smino's Breakthrough Projects". DJBooth. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  36. ^ Niespodziany, Ben. "Home Team • Jean Deaux". These Days. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  37. ^ "Smino's Satin Lined Hoodies Are What Natural Hair Dreams Are Made Of". Vibe.
  38. ^ "These Hoodies With Satin-Lining For Your Locs Are Being Hailed As The Blackest Merchandise Of All Time". Blavity.
  39. ^ "Rapper Smino Debuts Satin-Lined Hoodie to Protect Hair While Sleeping". Teen Vogue.
  40. ^ "Smino Chart History: Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved November 22, 2018.
  41. ^ "SMINO – 4SPORT (EP)". RapWave.
  42. ^ a b "blkjuptr by Smino on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
  43. ^ a b c d "blkswn by Smino on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
  44. ^ "Anita (Remix) [feat. T-Pain] - Single".
  45. ^ "Soulection White Label: Monte Booker – EP by Monte Booker on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
  46. ^ "Bucket List Project by Saba on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
  47. ^ "Smino Assists Tobi Lou On "Troop"". Retrieved March 30, 2018.
  48. ^ https://www.hotnewhiphop.com/sango-recruits-smino-for-the-glossy-khlorine-new-song.1977697.html
  49. ^ https://consequenceofsound.net/2019/04/pivot-gang-cant-sit-us-album-bad-boys-smino/
  50. ^ "Life as a Bachelor by NAPALM on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
  51. ^ "Money Like a Pastor (feat. Smino & Corban Josiah) [Explicit] - Gdot Markee". Amazon.
  52. ^ "JEAN DEAUX FEAT. SMINO – "DONT KALL MY NAME" (PROD. BY THEMPEOPLE)". Pursuit of Dopeness.
  53. ^ "Jean Deaux | "XYZ" (feat. Smino)".
  54. ^ "Telefone by Noname on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
  55. ^ https://www.thesedays.news/releases/2016/9/14/sean-deaux-vice-city-2-ep
  56. ^ "Kompany - Single".
  57. ^ Barber, Andrew. "AmbI Lyrics drops "The Run Around" featuring Smino". FakeShoreDrive. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  58. ^ https://revolt.tv/listen/music-taranphoeno-phoelix-feat-smino-jean-deaux-00a15fd6
  59. ^ http://onsmash.com/music/bari-the-prefix-ep-stream/
  60. ^ https://pitchfork.com/reviews/tracks/ace-ft-smino-and-saba/
  61. ^ "Kemba hits reset on his new single "Exhale"". The Fader.
  62. ^ "August 08 & Smino Are Smooth Operators on "Blood on My Hands"". Highsnobiety.
  63. ^ a b "Listen to J. Cole's Dreamville's New Album Ft. Kendrick Lamar, Vince Staples, and More". Pitchfork. Retrieved 7 July 2019.
  64. ^ "4 Tha Wait by Jay2". Apple Music.
  65. ^ "The Big Day by Chance the Rapper". Apple Music. Retrieved July 27, 2019.
  66. ^ "Cousin Stizz Announces New Album, Shares New Song "STP": Listen". Pitchfork. Retrieved 12 August 2019.
  67. ^ "SiR's "Chasing The Summer" Tracklist Features Kendrick Lamar, Lil Wayne, Smino & More". HipHopDX. Retrieved 30 August 2019.
  68. ^ Skelton, Eric. "Smino Releases his First Music Video with Striking Visuals for "blkjuptr"". Pigeons & Planes.
  69. ^ "Smino's "Anita" Video Is A Celebration Of Black Love". The Fader.
  70. ^ "Watch Smino's Hazy and Lustful "Netflix & Dusse" Video". OkayPlayer.
  71. ^ "Smino Unveils Cinematic Video for "Wild Irish Roses"". Complex.
  72. ^ Schatz, Lake. "Smino announces new album, Noir, shares "L.M.F." video: Watch". Consequence of Sound.
  73. ^ Williams, Aaron. "Smino's Exuberant 'Z4L' Video Details Wild Tour Shenanigans With Bari And Jay2". Uproxx. Retrieved 3 April 2019.
  74. ^ "Watch Smino's New Video for "Klink"". Complex.
  75. ^ Price, Joe. "Watch Dreamville's "Sacrifices" Video f/ J. Cole, EarthGang, Smino, and Saba". Complex. Retrieved 12 August 2019.