Vision is everything, especially for Burberry.Erry. The Opium creative not only prides himself on being “passionate and motivated,” but has foreseen his success since he was a teenager. To him, it’s not about chasing clout — which comes off as “whack” and “corny” — it’s about staying true to your roots with a “genuine, kind heart” and working towards what really matters to you.
“I just want to be passionate about my craft,” he told OGM host Hakeem Rowe. “Everything I’ve done up until this point has brought me here. I didn’t do the things I did to be sitting here [with you]. I did it because I thought it was sick. Now, everything worked out. I want to go back to my earlier roots and do everything I loved to do… I just want to do what I want to do — be passionate, be motivated — and I know everything else is going to be up top [with me].”
Known for his longtime affiliation with Playboi Carti, the skater-stylist-model is everything that meets the eye and more. Sporting pitch-black spiked hair, stark eye make-up and a sauce so niche only his friend Carti can compare to, his lively persona speaks volumes to his come-up as a self-made designer and model for Balenciaga (among other labels). Now helming his own brand, KIM KRUEGER, he was directly inspired by the late Virgil Abloh to pursue his passion in fashion.
“Virgil told me to start ‘screen-printing tee shirts and I promise you, you’ll make more than you would at a 9-5.’ I took that to heart,” he said. “The inspiration is him. He’s the GOAT because he did so much. Not only was he an architect, but he was in fashion, a DJ — the sky was the limit. He was an amazing human. Not one negative word came out of his mouth. He’s so much bigger than anything — he was the best at being a human.”
While the punk creative’s love for clothes is a derivative of the aesthetic he’s garnered for himself, his roots in skating stem from the wildly entertaining Bam Margera — who in his heyday gave Erry purpose amid loneliness. “I was alone a lot during my childhood, and all I wanted to do was skate,” he divulged. “I never skated to get good, but it just distracted me from everything. Skateboarding brought me something that I wanted to escape. I wasn’t alone when I was skating.”
His relationship with Carti is even more interesting, as Erry remains humbled with constant quips of “not being famous” or having musical inclination — being more of a friend to Carti than his “stylist.” “I was signed to Opium as a creative consultant, stylist and a model. I style Carti, but he doesn’t need me,” he said. “We’re just close friends and he asks things of me. I never want to say ‘I’m his stylist.’ I’m like 90% his friend and 10% everything else.”
Erry’s foray into the music industry happened by accident — or so he tells it. He was a fan first, falling in love with the early SoundCloud era dominated by Lil Yachty, Lil Uzi Vert and of course Carti. First appearing in the visual for Frank Ocean‘s “Forrest Gump,” Erry’s bubbly yet focused character is further proof of the trajectory he’s always been on. He’s manifested it all — even meeting Carti and getting on stage with Lil Uzi Vert in 2016-17. “You’re gonna know who I am,” he said in Uzi’s ear. Now, Erry is more than notorious for his work. He says he’s “blessed” to be in the rooms that he has — with Ye, Virgil, Carti etc. — and befriend the people who have steered the culture to its currently rugged, “Bum Fly” allure.
“Everything that has came to my head — except become a millionaire — I swear has come true. There’s a difference between wanting sh*t and knowing sh*t, and I f**king know,” he said. “For example, it was like 10 days before ‘Whole Lotta Red’ dropped, and on my mother’s life, I said to my girl at the time, ‘I don’t know why, but I feel like Playboi Carti is going to message me.’ He messaged me the next day. He DM’d me ‘hi.’ That’s it… Manifestation is everything. The first time I ever met him, I was on stage with him.”
An innovator still at the cusp of his greatest achievements, Erry’s sense of self is forever moving for the next generation of creatives — poised to shift the culture much like his mentors and close peers. Chopping it up for a rare conversation with Hakeem Rowe, Erry speaks on Opium, Carti, fashion, skating, Virgil Abloh and more in our latest Our Generation Music exclusive interview.
Watch Burberry.Erry’s OGM exclusive below!