BJ The Chicago Kid breathes soul and gritty storytelling into his music. The sound comes from an honest place with some experiences clearly personal while others teeter on observation. He enjoys delivering the art sans comprise.
You may recognize his name from the 2014 chart-topping single "Studio" where BJ laced the hook with frequent collaborator Schoolboy Q. It was the banger that led to his first Grammy nomination and catapulted his career to new heights.
But, that's certainly not where the South Side of Chicago native-turned-L.A. resident originated. The former drummer has been grinding and making his presence known since 2009 with background vocals, writing, and performance credits stretching from Ramsey Lewis to Mary Mary, Mario, Kanye West and Stevie Wonder, to name a few.
In 2012 he inked a recording deal with the legendary Motown Records and stirred buzz with the release and Motown co-signed, 'Good Luv'n". Throw in a sweet musical collage featuring Aaliyah's 'One In A Million" and it was a sure thing, that the soulful artist was one to seriously watch.
Fusing his street sensibilities with gospel roots, BJ's music stirs the ear drum with poetry and melody in turn crafting projects such as Taste Of Chicago, A New Beginning, The Life of Love's Cupid, Pineapple Now-Laters and its follow up – M.A.F.E. Project.
His vocals are spread throughout Dr. Dre's 'Compton' compilation album and the Chicago Kid is gaining proper circulation with his first single, "Church" from his upcoming Motown debut, "In My Mind." The Scott Laze-directed video, featuring Chance The Rapper and Buddy, takes on a complex issue dealing with the wants of the flesh but the morals of the heart.
While the anticipation continues to build for his 2016 album release, you can experience BJ on the "Kritically Acclaimed Tour" with rap-soul artist Big Krit.
Below, BJ takes EBONY into his mind and gets candid about his career, Chicago and L.A.'s artistic inspiration, and the "golden ticket" that opened the doors to his current success.
So, kick back and get in tune with BJTCK.