6lack was born Ricardo Valentine in 1992 in Baltimore, Maryland. He is the oldest of three siblings, and at age 5 they moved with his parents to Atlanta, Georgia. He started recording music as early as age 4 in his father’s music studio. He picked up rapping in middle school and started a career in battle rapping which involved numerous battles, including one with fellow Atlanta emcee Young Thug.
6lack signed with the International Music Group in 2011 and left Valdosta State University to pursue his career. He often found himself sleeping at the studio while in Miami and struggled for five years before leaving the label due to management issues. In 2015, 6lack joined the Spillage Village collective after living with members EarthGang and appeared on four songs with the group. He soon signed with LoveRenaissance under Interscope in 2016. His debut album, Free 6lack, charted as high as #34 on the Billboard 200 and was certified Gold. The single “Prblms” hit as high as #73 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was certified Platinum as he joined The Weeknd on his Legend of the Fall tour in 2017.
In 2018, his second album East Atlanta Love Letter was released and hit the #3 spot on the Billboard 200. It charted successfully in other countries, including top 10 placements on the charts in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom. That year he was featured on the record “OTW” with Ty Dolla Sign on Khalid’s EP Suncity. This song was certified double Platinum and peaked at #57 on the Billboard Hot 100. His single “Switch” was certified Gold in 2018.
6lack has been Grammy-nominated three times and recently won Best R&B Video for “Waves” with singer Normani. He is featured on Jessie Reyez’s remix to “Imported,” which has now been certified Gold. He has contributed numerous features and prepares to follow up with his third album soon.