Gen V: The Kid LAROI

Gen V: The Kid LAROI

GEN V

Gen V: The Kid LAROI

Get to know the Aussie kid next door as he sets his sights on global domination

Get to know the Aussie kid next door as he sets his sights on global domination

Photography: Richard Burbridge

Styling: Nicola Formichetti

Styling: Davey Sutton

Text: Kevin Ponce

The birth of a new viral superstar happens so often, that it's hard to keep up with who’s new and who’s now. But for The Kid LAROI, the Australian musician who has racked up over 44 million monthly listeners and has even collaborated with the likes of Miley Cyrus to the late Juice Wrld, proving to be one of the leading voices of this generation just comes with the territory. “I’m just a person walking through life, doing what I love, and making music,” says LAROI, whose real name is Charlton Kenneth Jeffrey Howard. Having kicked off his road to stardom by uploading early rap demos and beats to SoundCloud, it’s hard to imagine that the kid with a million dreams was raised in the rural areas of New South Wales, working his way out from a tough upbringing to becoming the one to watch in the underground rap scene in his home country–even landing a development deal with Sony Music Australia.

Coat Valentino / Shirt, sweater stylist’s own / Tie Trust Judy Blame

Fast forward years later, with a debut mixtape F*ck Love, a number one hit single “Stay” featuring Justin Bieber, and an upcoming debut studio album under his belt, Charlton is more than ready to claim his throne. “Life is crazy–[but] it’s just the start. I want to be remembered for being an inspiration for people to move with love and positivity throughout life and help change the world with music, whether it be one person or a million [people], giving hope to those that need it most.”

“Pink reminds me of Pigbaby.”-The Kid LAROI

Below, discover an extended Q+A with The Kid LAROI!

V Magazine: Being that you’re only 18 and have achieved what some only dream about, what’s been the most profound discovery you've made about yourself in these past few years?

The Kid LAROI: I’ve learned [to] value time with family and personal relationships more.

V: You know you’ve gone from making a splash in Waterloo to getting financial advice from Elon Musk, and even collaborating with McDonald's on a signature meal–is this level of success something that a part of you has always dreamed about? Are there any dreams you have that are yet unfulfilled? (If so, name a few)

TKL: That was my dream for sure. My next dream is to go to the middle of nowhere and never speak to anyone ever again,  start a family, and [live] by the beach.

V: Having accomplished quite a bit in music in these past few years, what do you hope your impact will be in music in the years to come? How do you want to be remembered, decades from now?

TKL: I just want to be remembered for always being myself and always doing whatever I want. I want to be remembered for helping inspire kids to chase their dreams. Without sounding corny, I definitely want to be remembered for being an inspiration for people to move with love and positivity throughout life and help change the world with music, whether it be one person or a million [people], and giving hope to those that need it most.

V: There’s no denying that you like fashion, and fashion certainly likes you. Tell us about the evolution of your personal style–What have been your go-to methods for putting together looks in both your personal and red carpet day-to-day moments? What are some pieces on your rotation that you’re currently obsessed with?

TKL: I don’t really have any brands that I keep in rotation, but whatever I think is hard and I like, I’ll wear it. It can be from K-Mart, as long as it looks cool and fits good–that’s all that matters to me.

V: The world, especially people of the past generation, certainly has some strong feelings about the way people are nowadays. What's your take on that?

TKL: That’s why they’re called the “Old Generation!"

All clothing and jewelry CELINE HOMME by Hedi Slimane

V: It’s no secret that people in the millions have been keeping up with you, almost religiously at this point. What do you think are some of the drawbacks of amassing a large following in today's social climate? Do you think can you live with or without social media? 

TKL: Ideally, I could live without social media but I love my fans and communicating with them. All the extra stuff I could do without, but for them, I think it’s important because that’s how I can talk to them. But once social media is off your phone, or shuts down, it doesn’t exist, you know?

V: After the explosive success of your song “Stay”, I think it’s safe to say that the world is even more curious about you and what you can bring to the music world. Do you ever feel the pressure to keep up the success and level of hype that the song brought when it comes to creating new music?

TKL: I do but I don’t let it interfere when I’m creating new music. I don’t go in thinking I need to make a bigger song than “Stay”–I just create music. 

V: Now with this added lens on the Australian music + cultural scene, thanks to you, of course, could we expect to see you collaborate with more artists from back home? 

TKL: Fucking oath!

V: Currently, you’re on a global concert tour, having just released your latest video for “Thousand Miles” and just played in your hometown for over 20K people–which is insane. What’s been the craziest adventure or experience from touring to date? Do you think the global, jet-setting rockstar lifestyle is something you’re definitely cut out for?

TKL: Seeing 20,000 people in an arena in my hometown, waiting for me to perform [has been the craziest experience]. No, I’m not cut out for the rockstar lifestyle–I’m a wholesome king.

Credits: PHOTOGRAPHY RICHARD BURBRIDGE / FASHION DIRECTION NICOLA FORMICHETTI / STYLED BY DAVEY SUTTON / ASSISTED BY HUNTER CLEM / HAIR (IRIS, KID, MALIKA) NIKKI NELMS (JESS MOLONEY MGMT) FOR MAUI MOISTURE / HAIR (SHYGIRL, SKY) NIKKI NELMS (JESS MOLONEY MGMT) FOR RED BY KISS / HAIR (CHARLI, EARTHEATER, RINA) NIKKI NELMS (JESS MOLONEY MGMT) FOR GOODY HAIR / HAIR (EVAN) ASHLEY STEWART / MAKEUP RAISA FLOWERS (EDMA) / MANICURE (IRIS, SHYGIRL, EVAN, SKY) LEANNE WOODLEY / MANICURE (CHARLI, KID, MALIKA, RINA, EARTHEATER ) JIN SOON CHOI (HOME AGENCY) / DIGITAL TECHNICIAN NICK BARR / PHOTO ASSISTANTS PETER SISKOS, JESSE ALLAN /  STYLIST ASSISTANT EMMA V. OLECK / MAKEUP ASSISTANT EUNICE KRISTEN / HAIR ASSISTANTS ASHLEY STEWART, TRISHA JOHNSON

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