Up and Coming: Kweku Collins

Kweku Collins is a 21-year-old rapper, producer, and songwriter born in Evanston, IL. Collins has been surrounded by music practically his whole life. Joining his father on stage at the age of 4-years-old, playing African drums.

This influence that he had at such a young age has shaped the artist that he is today, and the passion he has for his music.

Throughout high school, Collins began writing and producing his own songs, and in 2015 he joined Closer Sessions shortly after his released EP “Say It Here While It’s Safe.”  His EP was critically praised and it put him on Planes 20 under 20 List.  

In 2016, Kweku Collins released Nat Love that includes hits such as, “Stupid Rose” by Vanilla Skies ft. Taylor Bennet, and my favorite, “The Last”.

This LP was reviewed by Pitchfork and received Pitchfork Best New Track. This was the catalyst for him being featured in other publication such as The FADER, Billboard, Chicago Reader and many more.

A year later, in 2017, he released his EP “Grey.” This EP continues to show his unique sound including inspirations from reggae and mixing unique sounds with his melodic verses.

“Kweku uses grey’s sonic cohesion to give a holistic snapshot of his life and the many thoughts and feelings that exist within him simultaneously, a feat that many artists struggle to achieve.”- Drowned In Sound

Kweku playing Pepsi Stage at Lollapalooza 2017.

I first became aware of Kweku Collins when I went to Lollapalooza in 2017. He was one of the very first artists to play the opening day of the four-day festival, and he gathered quite a large crowd in the morning at the Pepsi Stage.

Lollapalooza even features his song “Stupid Roses” in the Day one recap video from Lollapalooza 2017.

Kweku recaps playing his first Lollapalooza.

Kweku Collins also was part of RedBull Sound 30 Days in Chicago that is carried out every November. He played in his hometown in Evanston at Evanston Space along with Kamau and Trapo.

It was a very intimate show due to the size of the venue but, the energy that he put out during the show had everyone jumping around and singing along. I even got the opportunity to speak briefly with Kweku Collins since Red Bull Sound was giving out merchandise. I was one of the people able to get the skateboards with Kweku Collins name.

Kweku Collins is a force in the industry and has done so much already within the industry in such a short amount of time to put his name out there. As a musician, and creator its very exciting to see how much more of an impact he is going to make in the music industry.

Check him out on Spotify, Apple Music, and Soundcloud.


I am a student at UIC studying Communications and Music. Started singing and playing instruments when I was in high school and fell in love. I love going to concerts and talking to people about music.

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