Smino performing in October 2016
|Birth name||Christopher Smith Jr.|
|Also known as||C. Smi|
|Born||October 2, 1991|
St. Louis, Missouri
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 a co-founder of the musical collective Zero Fatigue with Bari, Monte Booker, Jay2, and Ravyn Lenae. He is signed to independent label Downtown Records. 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.
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.
2012-16: Various projects and Zero Fatigue
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" Innumerable, who became his closest friend and is now his manager.
Smino is part of a musical collective called "Zero Fatigue" with producer Monte Booker, and artists Jay2, Bari, and Ravyn Lenae. On October 2, 2015 Smino released his first EP, S!Ck S!Ck S!Ck. On December 11, he released his second EP titled Blkjuptr. On July 31, 2016, Smino appeared on Noname's mixtape, Telefone, with Saba and Phoelix on the track "Shadow Man". 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".
On December 2, 2016, Smino released the title track to serve as 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.
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. On July 6, it was announced that Smino and Ravyn Lenae will be opening for SZA on The CTRL Tour. 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 later appeared on the remix for "Anita".
In April 2018, he and Monte Booker co-headlined the Kouple Drillz Tour which included shows in Asia and Australia. On May 17, he released a single called "New Coupe, Who Dis?" featuring Mick Jenkins. He also appeared on some of his frequent collaborative producers tracks, Cam O'Bi on "TenderHeaded", Phoelix on "Taranphoeno", and Sango on "Khlorine". On July 9, he released a remix to Drake's "In My Feelings", and a track called "Coupe Se' Yern" produced by himself.
On October 26, 2018, Smino released a single titled "L.M.F." produced by Sango, accompanied by a music video. Smino released the album's second single titled "Klink" on November 4, announcing it via an Instagram post. His second album, NØIR, was released on November 8. 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.
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, 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. 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." Exclaim said his music is a "mix of smart rapping and crowd-pleasing, futuristic R&B grooves."
|Title||Album details||Peak chart positions|
|S!Ck S!Ck S!Ck||
|Smeezy Dot Com||
(with Bari Allen)
As lead artist
|"Netflix & Dusse"|
|"Wild Irish Roses"||2018|
|"New Coupe, Who Dis?"||non-album single|
|"Coupe Se’ Yern"|
|"Touch The Ceiling"||2012||Bari Allen||YDOC|
|"Money Man"||2015||NAPALM||Life as a Bachelor|
|"Kolors"||2016||Monte Booker||Soulection White Label - Monte Booker|
|"Shadow Man"||Noname, Saba, Phoelix||Telefone|
|"World in My Hands"||Saba, LEGIT||Bucket List Project|
|"Kompany"||2017||Monte Booker, Phoelix||non-album single|
|"TenderHeaded"||2018||Cam O'bi||Grown Ass Kid|
|"The Run Around"||Ambi Lyrics||Study Hall|
|"TROOP"||tobi lou||non-album single|
|"Taranphoeno"||Phoelix, Jean Deaux||TEMPO|
|"Khlorine"||Sango||In The Comfort Of|
|"Intrigue"||Bari Allen||The Prefix|
|"Ace"||Noname, Saba||Room 25|
- Swanita Tour (2017)
- Kouple Drillz Tour (with Monte Booker) (2018)
- A Quest For Love Tour (Mick Jenkins) (2016)
- The CTRL Tour (SZA) (2017)
- Acoustic Tour (T-Pain) (2017)
- Madison, Taylor. "Smino: Meet the Midwest MC Behind One of the Summer's Coolest Love Songs". Rolling Stone. Retrieved May 24, 2017.
- "hicago's Very Own: Zero Fatigue". Medium.
- "Smino News". DJ Booth.
- Tanzer, Myles (March 8, 2017). "Smino Announces Debut Album 'blkswn'". The Fader.
- Mahadevan, Tara. "Smino is making a midwest musical moment". Noisey.
- Burney, Lawrence (May 13, 2017). "Smino Isn't Singing to Himself Anymore". Noisey.
- "Meet Smino, the rapper about to put St. Louis back on the map". Pigeons and Planes.
- Frazer, Wes. "Meet Smino, The Deeply Loyal Rapper Putting His People First". The Fader. Retrieved May 5, 2017.
- Drake, David. "Zero Fatigue: Chicago's Next Hip-Hop Visionaries". Pitchfork.
- Moore, Jacob. "Listen to Smino's 'S!CK S!CK S!CK' EP". Pigeons And Planes.
- "Smino Releases Debut Video "Blkjuptr"". HipHopDX.
- Daramola, Israel (August 8, 2016). "Noname: Telefone Album Review". Pitchfork. Retrieved August 9, 2016.
- Mench, Chris (October 27, 2016). "Stream Saba's New Project 'Bucket List'". Complex.
- Pickens, Ashley (March 8, 2017). "Smino Wants To Reflect A New Light On St. Louis With Debut Album 'blkswn'". Vibe.
- 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.
- Kim, Michelle. "Smino "New Coupe, Who Dis?" [ft. Mick Jenkins]". Pitchfork. Retrieved 19 August 2018.
- "Cam O'bi - TenderHeaded [ft. Smino]". Retrieved January 23, 2018.
- "Smino shares two-song single, 4sport, including Drake remix: Stream". Consequence of Sound.
- "Smino drops new single "L.M.F."". The Fader.
- Price, Joe. "Smino Drops New Song "Klink"". Complex.
- Williams, Aaron. "Smino Smoothly Announces The Title And Release Date Of His Upcoming Album With A Fire Freestyle". Uproxx.
- "Smino Announces "NØIR" Tracklist Featuring Bari, Jay2, Valee & More". HotNewHipHop.
- C. M., Emmanuel. "The Break Presents: Smino". XXL Magazine.
- Glaysher, Scott (March 20, 2017). "Smino - Blkswn". Exclaim.
- "Smino Chart History: Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved November 22, 2018.
- "blkjuptr by Smino on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
- "blkswn by Smino on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
- "Life as a Bachelor by NAPALM on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
- "Soulection White Label: Monte Booker – EP by Monte Booker on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
- "Telefone by Noname on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
- "Bucket List Project by Saba on Apple Music - iTunes". Retrieved April 20, 2017.
- "Kompany - Single".
- Barber, Andrew. "AmbI Lyrics drops "The Run Around" featuring Smino". FakeShoreDrive. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
- "Smino Assists Tobi Lou On "Troop"". Retrieved March 30, 2018.
- "Kemba hits reset on his new single "Exhale"". The Fader.