Hip-hop’s Smino, recently treated a crowd to the premiere of his new track “blkswn” live at Thalia Hall during Red Bull Sound Select Presents: A Quest for Love Tour with Mick Jenkins in October. Now, the St. Louis native is excited to share a full video from the live performance as part of Red Bull’s 20 Before 17 series, celebrating the year in music with 20 exclusive tracks, videos, lectures and more from 40+ artists.
Produced by Sango, Smino’s track “blkswn” was written and recorded at Red Bull Studios in Los Angeles over three straight days of sessions in collaboration with Red Bull Sound Select. Smino was raised in St. Louis but has been making a name for himself in Chicago’s rap scene. Born into a musical family, with a blues bass legend for a Grandfather, Smino’s parents taught him the drums at age seven and shortly after he began rapping, emulating an older cousin who was an MC. As a teenager he began producing and then headed off to college in Chicago. After a few years of shuttling between the two cities, Smino returned to Chicago, connected with 20 year old producer Monte Booker and saw his vision snap into focus. Together with Booker they created the Zero Fatigue crew – a collective of artists, singers and rappers who are pushing boundaries while favoring a more organic and melodic sound. Booker and Smino are currently hard at work on Smino’s debut album.
About 20 Before 17
Now in it’s third year, the ’20 Before’ series returns to celebrate Red Bull’s moments in music from the past year with 20 exclusive tracks, videos, lectures and interactive experiences from 40+ artists, including YG, Lil Wayne, Dizzee Rascal, Erykah Badu, Om’Mas Keith, MikeWillMadeIt, Susan Rogers, Smino, Warm Brew, Mixpak and more.
Red Bull Sound Select has released several two-song digital singles from its top hand-picked artists throughout 2016 including:
Gallant’s “Skipping Stones” featuring Jhené Aiko
Race Banyon’s “What Are We Doing” featuring Ty Dolla $ign
Povi’s “Park Hill” featuring iLoveMakonnen
River Tiber’s “Illusions” featuring Pusha T (produced by River Tiber, KAYTRANADA & Doc McKinney)
Mick Jenkins’ “Drowning” featuring BADBADNOTGOOD
Finding Novyon’s “I Can’t Lose” produced by Sonny Digital
Connor Pearson’s “Free Fall featuring D.R.A.M.” produced by Doc McKinney