The Boy Next Door: Khleo Thomas

Yes, you’ve seen him somewhere before. Many of us first fell in love with him in 2005’s Roll Bounce. But now the cute kid with the curly Afro is a man looking to cement himself as an all around entertainer. After fifteen films, ten TV shows and two very successful mix tapes, Khleo Thomas is ready to show the world that he’s up next.

Are you ready?

After booking his first acting job as a child, Khleo became a full time working actor in the business. Born in Anchorage, Alaska and raised in both Germany and Los Angeles, Khleo Thomas was did not have the story of the average young star. “This was not something I was forced to do. I’ve seen kids who were forced into this lifestyle but me, I told my mother I wanted to do this so I saw all of the craziness as me just chasing my dreams”. The dream chase kept Khleo from every day childhood things like school, socializing and pursuing his other dream of playing collegiate hoops but has brought him a loyal fan base and a stat sheet that reads better than actors twice his age. But for the heat of his run, Khleo Thomas has seemed to fly under the radar for the last few years as he turned his attention full time to music.

But for as much as he’s turned his attention elsewhere there has also been the harsh reality of a business that’s never appeased by what you’ve done but by what you’re doing next. “I never stepped away from the business. People assume that just because you’ve worked that it’s just going to continue. A lot of films that I’ve done people haven’t even seen. I’ve managed to stay busy”, he says. As a child star there’s always a possibility of fading off into obscurity once the charm of your age is gone but Thomas makes no excuses for his iron not being as hot as it once was. He understands that now he’s in line with other talents who deserve a chance as much as he does. “You can’t let the industry turn you into a person who thinks they’re above everyone else. I’m no different from anybody. My family helped me to stay grounded…I prefer being down to earth”. His boy next-door charm is even present in his music. Opting to omit profanity from his mix tapes, Khleo embodies the new age idea that being you is always better than following suit with what’s hot. “People seem to have latched on so much because they can relate—I’m just writing everything I’ve been through”, Khleo says, “I’m not on that whole I’m stunting n everybody type of thing—I’m cool on all of that. I don’t feel like there’s a need for all of that, I feel the same about cursing in my music. That time you’re using to curse, you can motivate somebody who’s listening”.

His clean take on music is inspiring and his journey for a label to call home has been interesting to say the least. After a not so successful run with Bow Wow and LBW Records at the forefront of his career Thomas joined forces with another young rap phenom, Soulja Boy. Upon meeting, the two made the decision that Khleo would become a part of Soulja’s label “SODMG Entertainment”. Again the relationship didn’t result in the album that he so desperately desired and that’s when Khleo decided he’d make a way on his own. Following the success of his mix tape, which tallied 100,000 downloads in its first month, Khleo Thomas knew he could start to manage his own budding music career through the most powerful tool of our generation: the Internet. With buzz surrounding the split between he and SODMG, Thomas released his second mix tape The Next Episode at the top of the year and his fans responded by doubling the downloads of his first, solidifying Khleo as an up and coming rapper to look out for.

The spotlight is not new to Khleo. Although the humble Alaska native has been a part of young Hollywood for over a decade now, Thomas would still rather be at home than rubbing shoulders with his peers at the hottest parties. A self-proclaimed workaholic, he insists that right now he’s focused on making moves that will render him legendary not hot for a week. “I want people to say that was one talented dude. I put my all into this. This is my life. I didn’t choose to go to school; I didn’t choose to get a degree. This is my life. My love, my craft. This is it. Respect me for the talent of it”.

You got it, Khleo…after all—you’ve earned it.

 

Written by: Iman N. Milner

Photos by: Ashley B. Nguyen

Styling By:Seth Brundle

MUA: Sarah Bahlibi


12 Comments

  1. AMAZING INTERVIEW!!! AMAZING PHOTOS!!! KHLEO NEEDS TO MODEL!!!

    Posted by Janice Williams on 01 March 11 at 9:25am
  2. I’ve Come To Learn That Khleo Thomas Is A Beautiful Person Inside And Out. I Respect His Music Because He Takes In Consideration The Young Kids That Might Listen To His Words, He Life, His Story And To Tell A Story You Don’t Need To Use Profanity. You Just Need To Tell The Truth, Be Honest With Yourself First Then Be Honest With The People. Khleo Does That Everyday And That’s What Makes Him Better Then Most Artist Out Here Rappin Today… I Wish Him All The Best In Life.

    Posted by AddicShun on 01 March 11 at 10:03am
  3. OMG HE LOOK SO DAMN FINE!!!!

    Posted by Comelia on 01 March 11 at 10:20am
  4. Nice Bio, awesome pics, talented young man

    Posted by AllieDaPoet on 01 March 11 at 2:16pm
  5. OH MY GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!! KHLEO I LOVE YOU.I LOVE THOSE PICTURE YALL DID A GREAT JOB.WHERE DID YOU TAKE THOSE??? I LOVE YOUR SONE KHLEO “I LOVE YOU 2″ I GOT IT ON REPEAT

    Posted by BRIANA DUNSTON on 01 March 11 at 3:01pm
  6. I’ve been waiting for him to do his thing, he’s got talent for sure. Even when he was with Bow I was waiting for him to come out with stuff, I think Bow didn’t care about him as an artist, so I’m glad he is making his own moves now.

    Posted by dee on 01 March 11 at 7:31pm
  7. Thank you guys for that great article you wrote and for giving Khleo another outlet to which he can express him-self and for which his fans now and in the future can truly see what type of person he is and the great music that is to come. And see the Khleo Thomas is a beautiful person inside and out and how he truly loves his fans and family. And i can wait to see and hear more from him and it is magazine like you that make people want to come and read and listen to what you have to say. Kheo if you read this just know you will alway have a fan in me and ” I LOVE YOU 2″ (aka Trishia song).

    Posted by Trishia Louise on 02 March 11 at 3:57pm
  8. Well see I’ve been a fan of Khleo’s ever since holes. I’ve been just listening & watching what he is doing & he is just a wonder artist & man. They’re aren’t a lot of people I can say that to because the way they come off isn’t the same way they act. But Kle is always the same. To the music & to his wonderful ustreams. I just love his personality & is whole character. I’ve mostly listen to Kle music because it doesn’t have cursin in it. I’m glad that he decided to put his music out there & become the wonderful artist that he is. kle will always have respect from me. Not only as an artist wise but also from a grown man to a grown woman wise. Kle keep dong your thing #TeamKhleo will always be here. “I Love You 2″

    Posted by Vanette on 02 March 11 at 6:58pm
  9. the pics are awesome ! & of course you STILL look absolutely adorable . GREAT photoshoot

    Posted by kandy_luvv on 03 March 11 at 8:08pm
  10. Thank you Edge for such a great write up On Khleo… He has proven himself in so many ways, only time well tell, When HIS music and career will take him allll the way to the top…
    Again thank you Edge for such beautifully photo spread and article…

    Posted by LadyRoq on 03 March 11 at 9:18pm
  11. Wow. I was wondering what happened to him…OK Reminds me of Allen. Lol Great Interview!

    Posted by JAM on 06 March 11 at 3:31pm
  12. I CANT WAIT TIL THE DAY ALL THE HATERS TURN ON THE TV AND SEE KHLEO.I WANT TO SEE THE LOOK ON THEIR FACES.EVRYONE CALLES ME A LAME FOR LISTENING TO HIS KHLEOS MUSIC,BUT I DONT CARE I DO AS I PLEASE WHEN I PLEASE.KHLEO HAS THE POTENTIAL TO BE THE NEXT “MICHAEL JACKSON” OF THE MUSIC WORLD AND THE NEXT TYLER PERRY OF THE ACTING WORLD.PEOPLE JUST DONT SEE IT YET,BUT I DO.EVERY TIME I LISTEN TO ONE OF KHLEOS SONGS I LEARN NEW THINGS LIKE:HOLDING MY OWN,AND NO MATTER WHAT DONT LET ANYTHING OR ANYONE GET ME DOWN.SO SINCE KHLEO HAS DONE SO MUCH FOR HIS FANS KHLEO I SAY TO YOU THANK YOU FOR EVERTHING.YOU ARE MY FAVORITE PERSON IN THE WORLD:):):):):):).YOU ARE THE BEST ROLE MODEL FOR ME AND ANY OTHER YOUNG PERSON IN THE WORLD.LOVE YOU ALWAYS BRIANA ZORLEEN BUDSTON AKA BREZZZY100

    Posted by BRIANA DUNSTON on 14 March 11 at 1:41pm

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