Chicago Voices part waters
In part two of the ongoing saga that is Chicago music, we are going to discuss Chicago voices that have managed to break out and bring about a following. Chicago voices it’s opinion loudly and with unabashed vigor. They aren’t a quiet people, a stay in line people, a don’t cause a ruckus people. They’ve been rioting about this world since the grand metropolis was nicknamed Mud City. This is the city of Lincoln and Jordan and Kanye. Of R. Kelly, Andre Dawson, and Buddy Guy. Of Common, Payton, and Harry Caray. Al Capone, Oprah Winfrey, Bill Murray, Jesse Jackson, Steve Albini, and Bernie Mac. It’s a long history and those coming up today are living up to the legacy.
I had the opportunity to play at the legendary rock club Empty Bottle with Jamila when she was in her band Milo & Otis. This was the same show I first was introduced to Chris Crack at. I have many friends in Chicago that have fallen in love with this woman from seeing her on stage. She commands attention and gets it with her powerful voice and message taking your soul, moving it across the dance floor and giving you a feeling that hope is still alive. Her new album HEAVN released on sterling Chicago indie label Closed Sessions and boy is it a thunderclap of a record. Infuse soul in three, two, one…
A longtime collaborator and friend who has been, in my opinion, at the forefront of production in Chicago. I haven’t managed to stumble across anyone making anything comparable to him, and on top of that he’s a hell of a rapper too. Originally from Ghana, however has been in the states for more than a decade and has played with some truly fantastic artists…along with myself. His music is a cross between Trent Reznor and Future. A lover of Food, Cupcaking, and sleazy instagram memes.
Bring on the weird. When I think of a Chicago voice that stands out amongst big and small artists alike, Denmark Vessey is that dude. Originally from Detroit, but I met him in Chicago so that’s how he ends up on this list. He’s worked with the likes of Danny Brown, Quelle Chris, and more. His most recent work is with producer Gensu Dean. Stream Martin Lucid Dream EP.
Jovan My Gawd
Here’s a new voice that you can add to your list of dope wonders of the world. Jovan Landry drops conscious bars over some sweet jazzy shit. She recently played Ian’s Party in Chicago and although I wasn’t there for it, I have heard the place was jumping. Which shows how much cross over appeal she has; historically Ian’s Party is a punk festival. Go out and get her new EP The Conscious.
Look for Part 3 coming soon…
(Photo of Jamila Woods shot by Zoe Rain)