17-year-old Kai Robinson pulls no stops when it comes to expressing his creativity. With an ever-growing social media following, a diehard perseverance, and a natural talent for entertainment, this guy’s poised to make his wildest dreams come true, and we’ll be there supporting him as he makes it big.
As a young kid growing up in West Palm Beach, Florida, Kai was introduced to video games the same way as everyone else from his generation: through the Game Boy. From there, his brother introduced him to some of the more advanced consoles. “My brother had a PlayStation 2 and an Xbox 360, so I was always on those,” he said. “And then from there I had like every console from Nintendo.”
Kai would attest that the two most important things from his childhood were basketball and video games. “My very first interest was playing sports,” he said. When Kai was done balling up on the court, he was back at home playing NBA 2K. To this day, basketball plays a major role in his life. “I’ve been playing varsity basketball at high school since I was a freshman,” Kai said. He also believes that if “everything just fell through the roof” with his content creation platform, he would put all of his energy into becoming a recognized ball player.
But with 2.4 million TikTok followers and 180,000 YouTube subscribers, Kai shows no signs of slowing down. According to him, being an entertainer is what makes the most sense. “Ever since I was a kid I always enjoyed making other people laugh,” he said. “That’s definitely a big part of why I started creating content. I started YouTube in 2017… I was like every other little kid trying to make Fortnite videos. Eventually I transitioned into more of what I’m comfortable with doing now which is IRL content, just showing off my personality.”
Kai takes pride in the fact that throughout his time in school, he’s always been considered the class clown. “I’ll usually always be the one to make the group laugh,” he explained. “I was never the one laughing, I was the one making everyone else laugh.” Kai is a natural at displaying his comedic chops in his content. He’s known for utilizing an alter ego character with a heavy lisp to add extra levels of enjoyment to his prank videos and gaming streams.
Within the last year, more people became acquainted with this character as Kai’s online exposure skyrocketed with TikTok. “I always thought that it was just some stupid app with people dancing on it or whatever,” he said. “But then actually I would see random videos or skits. So I thought ‘okay, maybe this isn’t just about dancing.’”
Kai took his talents to TikTok at just the right time. With the COVID pandemic causing many people to stay at home, social media use soared, especially when it came to TikTok. This phenomenon would later prove beneficial to Kai. “I had this YouTube video from like three years ago of me doing a skit and I was like ‘screw it’ and posted it (on TikTok),” he said. “And then overnight it just blew up. It went to 20k when I woke up one day and then a couple of days later it went to a million. And people were just like, ‘We want more of it.’” And Kai gave the people just what they wanted.
He blew up so quickly that he started to get noticed by people expecting him to jump into character. “That’s definitely an issue because I’ll just be chilling and people will beg me to do the voice impression that I do and they’ll just expect me to act that way all the time,” Kai said. “And sometimes that could even take a toll, you know? Like they’re not expecting me to just be myself.”
“When the camera is off I just turn really mellow,” Kai said. “On my Twitch streams you’ll see more of my actual personality. People are always like, usually when they comment on my streams on Twitch they’re like, ‘You’re so chill, I didn’t think that you were like this.’”
2020 presented a serious shift for Kai in the form of his newfound TikTok fame, but understandably, it also put a dent in his plans. Kai enjoys involving other people in his content, whether it be his Omegle interactions or his Warzone streams. “I feel like it’s better to bounce off of other people,” he explained. “I feel like it gives the viewer more entertainment.”
Kai went into 2020 with the intention of filming skits with other collaborators in the style of RDCWorld and King Bach. But during a pandemic in which people could only meet in Zoom meetings and gaming lobbies, that vision had to be put on the back-burner. While others might see this as a setback, Kai took the opportunity to explore another interest of his: music. He started playing piano at a young age, so it makes sense that he would journey into music creation.
“I actually think that if this pandemic didn’t happen, I wouldn’t be where I am at music-related [content,]” he said. “I’ve definitely been more fine-tuned with music as well as the videos I’ve been making.” From time to time, Kai will even freestyle some bars for the viewers of his streams, much to their delight.
“Obviously I’m going to keep up the content creation side because I’m not just gonna throw it all away,” he said. “But music is something that I’ve been doing my whole life, and right now I’m really starting to feel it.” It’s safe to say that Kai will be dropping some fire hits somewhere down the line.
Kai has a burning passion for many different modes of creativity, which isn’t always easy, especially given his age. It’s also intimidating for parents of creative kids, who might support their childrens’ aspirations even though they aren’t following a traditional road to success.
Although not as much as before, Kai still somewhat feels as if those around him don’t fully support his dreams. “I’m sure other kids can relate,” he said. “If you have this deep passion in your heart, you kind of question why they’re questioning you and your ability.”
“If your parents are putting you down and not supporting you, don’t let that stop you from working just as hard as if they actually were supporting you,” Kai said. “Definitely have other options like a plan B. But I say keep working hard at it, especially if you really love it. Honestly, you wont even care about the numbers if it’s something that you love.”
Kai is a part of a generation in which the avenues for success are easily accessible. With persistence like Kai, anyone can make it as an internet success. Kai left me with this word of advice for young content creators:
“It doesn’t matter what you want to be: a musician, a content creator, a gamer. No matter what, just put your heart and soul into everything out of the love for the craft and not for the money or views or how people will look at you. Ultimately what matters is your work ethic and your perseverance.”
On top of having a work ethic and perseverance, Kai Robinson has a bright future ahead of him, and the sky’s the limit for what he can accomplish in that time. Kai’s Twitter, TikTok, YouTube, and Twitch can be found here, here, here, and here.