Scott Ramon Seguro Mescudi (born January 30, 1984), better known by his stage name Kid Cudi (often stylized as KiD CuDi), is an American rapper, singer-songwriter, producer and actor widely credited as an influence on 2010s hip-hop and alternative acts.
Cudi began gaining major recognition in 2008 upon the release of his debut full-length project, the mixtape A Kid Named Cudi, the most noteworthy result of which being the tape catching the attention of Kanye West, who signed Cudi to his G.O.O.D. Music label imprint by the end of the same year.
A year later, he released his debut album Man on the Moon: The End of Day to widespread acclaim, its defining traits being its epic concept-album scope, psychedelic aesthetic, and a prominent mix of influences from rap, R&B, and rock that made for great crossover appeal. This same cross of genres would resurface in various, more experimental forms throughout his future releases.
Cudi is also a member of several groups: Alternative Rock duo WZRD alongside Dot da Genius, which formed in 2010, released a debut album in 2012 and has been on hiatus since; experimental hip-hop duo Kids See Ghosts alongside Kanye West, which formed and released a self-titled album in 2018; and trap duo The Scotts alongside Travis Scott (an outspoken fan of Cudi's, which formed and released a self-titled single in 2020, with a full album on the way.
Cudi also ventured into acting when he was cast in How to Make It in America. He has since appeared in several films including Goodbye World, Need for Speed, Entourage and Bill & Ted Face the Music. In addition, he has appeared on TV shows such as One Tree Hill, The Cleveland Show, Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Westworld.
- Man on the Moon: The End of Day (2009)
- Man on the Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager (2010)
- Indicud (2013)
- Satellite Flight: The Journey to Mother Moon (2014)
- Speedin' Bullet 2 Heaven (2015)
- Passion, Pain & Demon Slayin (2016)
- Kids See Ghosts with Kanye West (2018)
- Man on the Moon III: The Chosen (2020)
- The Scotts with Travis Scott (2021)
- Entergalactic (2021)
Tropes related to Kid Cudi include:
- Alternative Hip Hop
- As Himself: He played himself in Bill & Ted Face the Music as one of the historical characters Billie and Thea recruit to start a band.
- The Cameo: Drake cameos in the music video for "Pursuit of Happiness".
- Concept Album: All three Man on the Moon albums.
- Deconstruction: The second Man on the Moon album deconstructs the character described in the first, as well as continuing the story.
- Genre Shift: "Up Up and Away" from Man on the Moon: The End of Day has sort of an indie rock style, after a whole album of rap. On the same album, there's "Pursuit of Happiness", which has influences from late 80's Dream Pop and features indie artists MGMT and Ratatat.
- It Is Pronounced "Tro-PAY": "Cudi" rhymes with "muddy," not "moody". This is lampshaded in the music video for "Day 'n' Nite", where his character, Budi, complains that the manager keeps pronouncing his name as "Boodi" instead of "Buddy".
- Marijuana Is LSD: The video for "'Day 'n' Nite" implies that Budi smokes a joint before his night shift in a supermarket and he starts hallucinating the customers dancing in their underwear.
- New Sound Album: Speedin' Bullet 2 Heaven was a complete departure from his hip hop sound in favor of 90s-style alt-rock, indie rock, and grunge. Also a case of Something Completely Different as Cudder would later make a return to form with Passion, Pain & Demon Slayin'.
- A Noun Referred to as X: The mix tape A Kid Named Cudi
- Pun: the hook of "Make Her Say", based on a sample of the acoustic version of Lady Gaga's "Poker Face", makes the obvious joke:"I make her say/oh oh oh oh/when I/p-p-p-poke her face, p-p-p-poke her face"
- Record Producer:
- Emile and Plain Pat produced a large percent of A Kid Named Cudi and all three Man on the Moon albums ** Dot Da Genius is another producer he's worked with since the beginning of his career. He is also the second half of WZRD and co-produced the self-titled album.
- As of the WZRD album, Cudi's been producing himself, in addition to co-producing that album with Dot Da Genius he produced the entirety of his next solo album Indicud.
- The Stoner: The man has a song called "Marijuana"! He even lets the track run for a few extra seconds at the end so its length can reach 4:20.
- Kid Cudi has actually stopped using marijuana between Man on the Moon II and WZRD, though this hasn't prevented him from recording and performing songs about getting stoned.
- Soul-Sucking Retail Job: The video for the Crookers Remix of "Day 'n' Nite" starts with Cudo getting a severe telling off from his manager before starting his nightshift in a supermarket.