Childhood & Early Life
T. Mills was born Travis Tatum Mills, on April 12, 1989, in Riverside, California. One of his uncles gifted him a guitar when he was 5 years old. A young and impressionable Travis got fascinated with it. Thus, he started learning to play the guitar. By the time he was a teenager, his guitar skills had grown to a great degree.
Although he loved listening to music, making a career in music was never on his to-do list when he was in school. He was more interested in sports. His transformation happened at the age of 14, when he gathered some of his friends and started a punk-rock band.
The amateur band had their jam sessions in the basements of their houses. Gradually, they started playing at local coffee shows and also organized a few small backyard concerts. By the time he graduated from ‘Riverside City College,’ his band parted ways. Travis then started working as a solo musician.
He started making music on a software named ‘GarageBand’ on his ‘MacBook.’ He also wrote his own songs. As he could not afford a microphone for recording back then, he sang directly into his laptop and edited the sound through the software.
He made a ‘MySpace’ account to connect with more people and started uploading his music there. For the next three years, he continued to create and upload music. However, he never quite visited a recording studio until he was 20 years old.
Continue Reading Below
Travis grabbed his first career breakthrough in 2008, when he was scouted by an independent record label named ‘Uprising Records.’ In 2009, Travis started working on his first official project, an EP named ‘Finders Keepers EP.’ The EP helped him learn a few more things about professional music-making. The local success of the EP earned him connections with some major music labels.
In 2010, Travis released his debut studio album, ‘Ready, Fire, Aim!,’ with ‘Uprising Records.’ The album received a digital release and also became Travis’s stepping stone to bigger and better career opportunities.
He signed a contract with ‘Columbia Records’ in 2011 and started recording his second studio album soon. While the album took its own time, Travis released a mixtape titled ‘Leaving Home’ in July 2011. The mixtape turned out to be successful. Travis continued working on his next project, an EP of the same name as that of the mixtape.
In December 2011, Travis released the first single from his EP, ‘Vans On,’ and then released a promotional single titled ‘The Boom.’ Several music producers, such as Sir Nolan and ‘The Stereotypes,’ worked on the EP. It was officially released in January 2012.
The success of his mixtape and the EP had done the trick of bringing Travis into mainstream success. Travis was nominated for the ‘MtvU’s Woodie Award’ for the ‘Best New Artist.’
Shortly after that, he released another mixtape, ‘Thrillionaire.’ It contained 10 tracks and featured other artists, such as Smoke DZA and the duo ‘Audio Push.’ The mixtape, which was released in July 2012, was followed by the release of three music videos, ‘Diemonds,’ ‘Lightweight,’ and ‘Other Bitch Callin.’ Soon, Travis announced that he was working on the sequel to ‘Thrillionaire.’
In early 2013, Travis updated his fans on the progress of his second studio album, which had been delayed a lot. In March 2013, Travis released a single titled ‘Loud’ and then released the official music video for the single. He stated that the single was from his second studio album, which was due for release in the second quarter of 2013.
In April 2013, Travis embarked on a tour in collaboration with American rapper Sammy Adams. In June, Travis collaborated with Sammy Adams and Niykee Heaton for the remix of the Mike Posner song ‘We Own It.’ The song later featured on the official soundtrack of the blockbuster film ‘Fast & Furious 6.’
As his career prospered, Travis ventured into more collaborative work. In June 2013, he toured with the rock band ‘We the Kings.’ The following month, Travis released the official music video for his single ‘All I Wanna Do,’ which was the titular track from his next EP.
In February 2014, Travis released his new EP, ‘All I Wanna Do.’ Over the next few months, Travis became busy with the ‘All I Wanna Do’ professional tour. The phenomenal success of the EP helped him collaborate with more established rappers.
In 2015, Travis changed his stage name from “T. Mills” to “Travis Mills.” In July 2015, Travis released the official music video of the song ‘Young & Stupid.’ The song featured popular American rapper T.I.
In January 2016, Travis announced the release of his new single, ‘Don’t Need Much.’ By then, Travis had left ‘Columbia Records’ and had signed with ‘Republic Records.’ The song was made available for free streaming on ‘SoundCloud’ on the day of its release.
A few weeks later, Travis left ‘Republic Records’ and signed a record deal with ‘First Access Entertainment.’ Travis released his next EP, ‘While You Wait,’ under the new record label. The EP contained six tracks.
Apart from making music, Travis also likes acting. He made his official acting debut with the 2016 ‘Netflix’ comedy series ‘Flaked.’ The show received a mixed response from audiences and critics. In 2018, Travis appeared in the series ‘Alone Together.’
Travis is also known as a fashion icon and has walked the ramp in Paris and New York in 2016.