Oh what up sunny ass Chicago? Thanks for coming through as Pitchfork 2015 opens their gates once more. A beautiful day at Union Park, I was a woman on a mission. Get lit with ILoveMakonnen.With a little over 10 mins to soak in the ambiance I headed towards the Green Stage to find not only a packed stage but an outrageous influx of homies 5’7 and above rocking visors. Shout out upper body strength for guiding me through the crowds!
ILoveMakonnen, the Super Chef of the hour came through with the wrist action as he debuted new tunes and collab favorites like “Nokia” and “Look At Wrist”. Although the crowd was relatively tame, Makonnen still kept the new music and the energy going, amping the crowd with more sweaty wrist action.
Near the middle of the set, Makonnen Facetimes his Mom (aw!) and dedicates the next few tracks in her honor. Dang! And some of us can’t even make our mamas a proper birthday card. Overall Makonnen’s set was nothing short of what I expected. For a dude who is lax as hell, his music set was a good taste to all the other artists set to perform.
Stay tune for more Pitchfork recaps and commentary!
Since Wavefront folded a couple years ago, I’ve been itching for another event to be held on the city’s greatest asset – the waterfront. Cue Mamby on the Beach, Chicago’s newest music festival, which hit Chicago’s South Shore over the weekend. Water was centrally located and easy to find, police on site were friendly and helpful, and the people at Mamby were laid back and friendly – a refreshing change from the reckless neon kids of similar events.
Empire of the Sun and Passion Pit headlined the fest, but it was The ‘Go’s own Holt who stole the show. When he took the stage there couldn’t have been more than 100 people there. But the law of attraction would prove strong for the G.O.O.D. MUSIC signee, as Holt brought something to Mamby no one else would – real trap music. It was a much needed change of pace from the dominantly electronic lineup, a breath of fresh air for hip hop heads like myself. Fellow Treated Crew leaders Mano and Mic Terror kept the energy up as people flocked to the stage, and when it was all said and done an intimate crowd had become a high octane mob.
With Chicago’s skyline glistening across the lake and forgiving sand beneath your feet, Oakwood Beach served as an ideal location for the festival. I’m proud to live in a city accommodating a growing taste for live music and peaceful gatherings, and stoked to see Mamby on the Beach possibly become a staple of what we like to call Summertime Chi.
It started when I had the notion to check the video above in our archives because it had been blocked for some time by one of those label copyright infringement warnings, you know those… (¬_¬)
But to my pleasant surprise, the video played and it was unblocked!
I relived the classic performance by Cudi, not only because of how he kills it, but also for sentimental reasons. It’s not just mine, but probably collectively, our favorite concert video we’ve produced of all-time.
This was a secret show for SXSW and there was a mere Twitter account to follow that would reveal the performers and location of the night… that night. I remember we were at Peter Rosenberg’s Hot 97 showcase and scanning my phone to see that it was Kid Cudi headlining and he was to go on in any minute. I gathered some of the team to make the 10 minute walk to the venue, get in, text the rest of the video crew to get here quick because it’s about to close and Cudi is already on stage. Our 3 video guys: co-founder Maks G, Teddy Waffles, and Eugene IMP roll in as seemingly the last people to be let in, then immediately split up — right, center, left respectively and hit record.
The first song: this “Cudi Zone” x “Memories” x “Day N Nite” turn-up medley before the term turn-up was invented. That’s how this happened for us and Cudi and the Austin crowd delivered a memorable, energetic relationship. Cudi always brings it live and seeing him perform in this semi-intimate, and very surprise setting, is easily a top 5 concert experience as a whole that I’ve ever covered in Gowhere history.
Alas… it’s never not fresh to bring back a classic from time to time…
The Yelawolf show at The Metro this past Tuesday night was an epic night of sex, drugs, and rock and roll. It was an interesting mix of crowds as Yela gave his fellow Slumericans a lot of content as he brought a diverse crowd of listeners together at his sold out show in Chicago.
Interesting enough, a Hip-Hop show began with some Rock N Roll as Nashville, TN group Hillbilly Motel entertained the crowd at Metro with a variation of different genres. Their set was an interesting experience to ‘Hip-Hop heads’ that expected to begin the show with a local opener. That didn’t happen but Hillbilly Hotel definitely did entertain as they not only educated the crowd to the various influences that helped create their band, but as well as to the many individuals that impacted their musical upbringing. Surprisingly enough, Hillbilly Hotel often cited Chicago as a source of music folklore as many of this city’s music legends not only influenced their careers but as well as many legendary bands. Most importantly, Hillbilly Hotel advocated for their audience to think for themselves as well as fight for what they believe in as they rocked on through their hour set.
Highlights from Hillbilly Hotel:
The crowd was at his feet for Alabama spitter Yelawolf as he engaged his sold out crowd in Chicago from beginning to end. His nearly two hour set delivered an onslaught of new and old material as he serenaded his crowd to some of his latest records of his recently released Love Story album and brought the crowd to frenzy as he went down memory lane performing tracks off his legendary Trunk Muzik mixtape and records he released as a now member of Shady Records.
Yelawolf gave his crowd everything he had and then more as he went out of his way to ensure he gave his fans the best concert experience he could, and did. Some of the most important notes Yela spoke upon was the importance of his fans sticking with him amidst the several evolutions of music he has undergone. He also spoke about the current state of music, stating that it didn’t matter to him if his fans bought or illegally downloaded his music as long as his music was being spread for the better cause. Ultimately, as someone that has followed him since Trunk Muzik and the XXL Freshmen cover it was very interesting in seeing how he has evolved with his sounds as well as seeing the impact behind him finding his niche and his sound which we have grown accustomed to as the kid from a no name city in Alabama made his name known on a Tuesday night in Chicago.
The SaveMoney Army has been churning out hits and providing a platform of success for each of its members. We have grown accustomed to the unique sounds each SaveMoney has provided as the city of Chicago continues its support of the city’s most prolific Hip-Hop stable. The latest SaveMoney member to headline Metro was none other than Towkio, accompanied by DJ Spinn and Kehlani. This event was truly a passing of the torch-like event and Gowhere was there to provide some highlights that are shown below.
The Bay-area songstress rocked the crowd from beginning to end with her R&B and Hip-Hop fused lyrics that made the most unfamiliar follower of her music become instantly invested in her sound. Her set was hot! It was a mix of the sexualized lyrics accompanied by backup dancers that left a jaw dropping impression on the Chicago listeners. Kehlani made it perfectly clear that she is one of the fastest rising R&B upstarts in the country for a reason and her music and vision of where she is headed are perfectly in tune with her ambition and relentless dedication to her fans.
Till The Morning
How That Taste
All eyes were of SaveMoney’s Towkio as the Mexican-Japanese emcee headlined Metro for the first time and he surely did not disappoint. The world was at his feet and crowds rocked and echoed to every tune as Towkio showcased the greatness behind his full length debut project, WAV Theory. His set began with his most familiar and polarizing track “I Know You” that put him on the map as an undiscovered soloist finding his identity and culminated with bringing out his SaveMoney brethren Chance The Rapper to close off the show with his his “Heaven Only Knows” that also features Eryn Allen Kane. That wasn’t just it. Throughout his set Towkio brought out various SaveMoney members such as Joey Purp and Kami De Chukwu to perform “God In Me”, amongst other Leather Corduroys gems.
I Know You
God In Me
Heaven Only Knows
The show was very energetic from start to finish and showcased how much passion Towkio indeed has towards his craft and his fans. It was very emotional and reflectional for the Chicago emcee as he was able to look back and see how far he has come and how much he has grown in the 2 year process behind the creation of his project. Most importantly, at the end of the show fans left with the reminder that Towkio has emerged as one of SaveMoney’s brightest artists and that as he continues to release music will his legacy continue to grow within our city’s music scene.
It was a family affair. A successful one. Chicago’s the Mid was filled with Treated crowns last night when Holt took the stage to play his first hometown show since signing to GOOD Music. And while we got a taste of Holt’s new sound with “Nightcall,” last night we saw it all come together. The creativity and energy put into Holt’s new music is refreshing, and shit, hearing authentic music like that is exciting. You pair that authenticity with supreme confidence and the energy of a underground punk band… and that’s Holt live.