Childhood & Early Life
DaBaby was born Jonathan Lyndale Kirk, on December 22, 1991, in Cleveland, Ohio, US. He was the youngest child in the family and grew up with two older brothers.
He acknowledges his brothers for their influence on his taste in music. He listened to artists such as Eminem, Kanye West, 50 Cent, Lil Wayne. Despite being a music lover as a child, DaBaby was never quite interested in making a career in music.
The family moved to Charlotte, North Carolina, when DaBaby was 6 years old. The locality was not decent. Thus, DaBaby found himself amidst the bad elements from the streets. He himself indulged in petty crimes as a teenager.
He was booked by the local police several times for crimes such as driving with a fake license and possessing marijuana. He went in and out of prison, while also continuing his high-school education from the ‘Zebulon B. Vance High School’ in Charlotte, North Carolina.
By the time he was in his early 20s, he had started considering making a career in music. Before that, he did small jobs, sometimes illegal, to make money.
He underwent a major psychological transformation in 2014, when he decided to leave the life of crime behind. He also became more conscious toward his duties as a member of the society. According to him, he immersed himself into music to help people through his words and poetry.
He had initially adopted the moniker “Baby Jesus,” but considering the fact that it was religiously inappropriate, he changed it to “DaBaby” later in his career. In December 2014, he started working on his debut mixtape.
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In 2015, DaBaby released his debut mixtape, ‘Nonfiction.’ It was deemed amateurish and failed to attract music lovers. Not disheartened by the poor reception of his debut mixtape, DaBaby continued to work on his next project, another mixtape.
He also did not have any on-stage experience. Charlotte, North Carolina, did not have a great rap music scene either. Thus, DaBaby tried to look for options. In the spring of 2015, he moved to Austin, Texas, to participate in the ‘South by Southwest Music Festival.’ There, he proved his mettle by performing live on many of his tracks from his mixtapes.
He gained good response at the festival and then released another mixtape in 2016, ‘God’s Work: Resurrected.’ He managed to bring Boosie Badazz to collaborate with him.
Beginning with this mixtape, he began using the moniker “DaBaby.” In a short introduction to the mixtape, he explained that there were political reasons behind him changing his stage name.
The mixtape ‘God’s Work: Resurrected’ somehow worked a lot better than his debut mixtape and earned a lot of attention. In the absence of a record label, DaBaby usually released his singles and albums independently, on online platforms such as ‘SoundCloud,’ where he developed a significant fan base over the years.
In the following few months, DaBaby released several more mixtapes, such as ‘Billion Dollar Baby’ and ‘Back on My Baby Jesus Sht.’
With each new single, he became more popular. He also gained popularity with his ‘Baby Talk’ series of mixtapes.
He released the first instalment of his ‘Baby Talk’ mixtape in January 2017. It is arguably his most successful tape to date. The same year, he released three more instalments. All were successful. He also attended the ‘South by Southwest Music Festival’ that year and performed live.
Of all his singles from his mixtapes, one stood out the most. Titled ‘Light Show,’ the single was released in 2016 and became immensely successful. The single became immensely popular on ‘SoundCloud,’ ‘Datpiff,’ and ‘YouTube,’ making DaBaby an internet celebrity.
In June 2018, he released ‘Baby Talk 5,’ the last instalment of the ‘Baby Talk’ series. In November that year, he released another mixtape, ‘Blank Blank,’ which was fairly successful.
A huge career breakthrough came his way in early 2019, when he announced that he had signed a deal with ‘Interscope Records,’ one the biggest music labels in the country.
He also announced that he was working on his debut studio album, ‘Baby on Baby.’ The album released in March 2019 and had 13 tracks. It featured a number of popular artists, such as such as Offset, Rich Homie Quan, and Rich the Kid, as guests.
The album was an instant success, debuting at the 25th spot on the ‘Billboard 200’ chart, eventually rising to the seventh spot. A single from the album, titled ‘Suge,’ became particularly popular with the listeners and reached the eighth spot on the ‘US Billboard Hot 100.’
Critics appreciated the album, with ‘Pitchfork’ giving it 7.7/10.
Family & Personal Life
Despite the fact that he had left the life of crime before beginning his career, DaBaby got into trouble once again in November 2018, when it was reported that he had shot a man to death. It was later confirmed that DaBaby was attacked first by a mugger inside a ‘Wal-Mart’ store and had shot him in an act of self-defense. The charges against him were dropped in March 2019.
DaBaby has dated many women, as explained in the lyrics of many of his songs. However, there is no information available about his current romantic relationship.