Brian Todd Collins may have been born on April 1, but he’s no fool.
Self-christened as Kid Ink (for his manic pursuit of tattoos), the Los Angeles native became enamored of music as a teenager, immersing himself in beat creation and production techniques in after-school programs, which helped launch his career as a producer nine years ago. Ink took his inspiration from multi-talented performing producers like Pharrell Williams, Timbaland and Swizz Beatz, all famous for embracing different genres and expanding musical boundaries, leading him to shift gears into Hip Hop performance in 2009.
Adopting the stage name Rockstar, Ink attracted attention with his debut mixtape World Tour, which led DJ Ill Will to sign him to his indie label, Tha Alumni Group. With the new label affiliation came his new identity as Kid Ink and a burst of creative energy. In 2011, Ink dropped three new mixtapes — Crash Landing, Daydreamer and Wheels Up — which garnered him more exposure, expanded his fan base and inspired XXL Magazine to include Ink in their 2012 Freshman Class feature along with profiles on Macklemore, Future and Hopsin.
In 2012, Ink cracked Billboard’s Top 20 with his first independent album, Up & Away (and its successful singles “Time of Your Life” and “Lost in the Sauce”), which was quickly followed by his fifth mixtape, Rocketshipshawty.
Early last year, Ink signed with RCA which resulted in a flurry of activity, including his slamming singles “Bad Ass” and “Money and the Power” from his well-received EP Almost Home. Ink teased his sophomore album last fall with the single “Show Me,” featuring Chris Brown and DJ Mustard, followed by the smash “Iz U Down” in December; by the time the album, My Own Lane, was released this past January (debuting at No. 3 on Billboard’s album chart), Ink had earned his first gold record certification for “Show Me.”
Pharrell might make you happy, but Kid Ink is ready to show you a new world.
KID INK performs at Bogart's
Saturday, May 31. Tickets/more info here.