A Toast of Moscato with John Renaissance: Artist of the Week

They call him Renaissance for his ability to blend an eclectic mix of styles including R&B, pop, trap, and soul. A singer and songwriter, John Renaissance has placements on NBC, worked on Empire, the Steve Harvey Show and he is a member of the Chicago Federation of Musicians. A multi-talented phenom, his latest record MOSCATO, is a pop smash hit anticipating a long game break in the mainstream.

Eight months ago John Renaissance was featured on a song called, “BOTTLES IN THE AIR“, by an artist named DND. Upon viewing that, it was clear Renaissance could easily take that Usher, Donny Hathaway, Trey Songz, Jeremih and Chris Brown like sound, and push the craft even further. Now since dropping MOSCATO in late February, John Renaissance bodies the song and leaves listeners wanting a whole album of more!

To help break the record to a larger audience, John Renaissance started a “MOSCATO challenge” on social medias. Type in hashtag #johnrenaissance or #moscatochallenge to find it. You can either do a dance routine, a freestyle, or find your own creative way of showing your support to John Renaissance, and his soon to be hit record to the industry.

To get on the phone with John Renaissance was a pleasure, he is a joy to talk to, and very knowledgeable about the music industry. He explained how the Chicago Federation of Musicians is essentially the Chicago union for working musicians and musical performers. Over the course of JR’s career, he has rejected seven record deals; One record deal he declined for the label taking too long to come up with the legal paperwork. Another deal he declined due to the A&R being unprofessional, and sexually harassing a singer he regularly collaborates with. These are certainly commendable decisions, and his intelligence and discernment is something to be applauded.

John Renaissance is a well traveled artist, from New York to LA to Atlanta and hanging out with Lil Boosie; he is full of great stories. He spent the better part of last year working on a cruise ship in the Caribbean as the nightly musical entertainment, performing covers and originals, getting paid to do what he loves to do and live while cruising the Earth’s seas. His perspective on the pandemic, the start of the racial tension, and the BLM protests was quite insightful and beautiful. He said that everyone on the ship was from every corner of the planet, and that there was nothing short of love and unity to experience in that cruise.

John is working on a single called NOAH’S ARK, about how the world is seemingly falling apart, and he is singing on a yacht. He is also working on two other singles, THOUGHTS FROM A PRIVATE JET and CATALINA, and a full project called LIFE IS A TRIP, a Drake influenced style of diary writing. JR will release a precursor EP to that project as well titled, WALK AWAY.

John Renaissance is inspired by Smokey Robinson. He wants to write the records, find the artists, build the empire. He is actually secured two SAG roles for artists of his, NDPNDNT and Aaron Mack, both with roles on EMPIRE. John Renaissance has a quote that will be used directly, it is a fantastic way to sum up his brand in one word when needed: “You can be a jack of all trades, master of none, but me? I’m a Renaissance Man.” JR is inferring that everything he does and touches, is at a masterful level. After listening to his music and hearing his stories, one would undoubtedly have to agree.

John Renaissance | Soundcloud | Facebook | Instagram

Ever Evolved | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | Instagram

Orlando Coolridge Channels West Coast Melody On AK Like U Kno: Artist of the Week

California born, Chicago based elite emcee, Orlando Coolridge took this latest single to his west coast roots with AK LIKE YOU KNO. A groovy bass rhythm and a clap on the one and the three. Coolridge croons a catchy hook with slight auto-tune to add some accent to the chorus. A member of SlumpGang777, and a regular contender on the No Coast rap battle circuit. When Coolridge is not lighting up his opposition in a battle, or touring with his collective, you can find him rocking some of the best shows in the Midwest, and dropping regular tunes with it.

AK LIKE U KNO brings out a funkier side of the rap battle extraordinaire, and the song still contains the classic Coolridge bar structure. Coolridge raps, “You can probably catch me on the I-5, chronic in the left hand, sliding by the skyline. It’s my time, to show off my divine mind, my style ages like fine wine, Malibus most wanted with the fine dine.” The exceptional way he strings together lines is definitely not void in his latest single, you get classic and contemporary Coolridge all in one record.

Orlando Coolridge | Soundcloud | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Ever Evolved | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | Instagram

Artist of the Week: Rizzi Konway Releases Morning/Mourning LP, Packed With Chicago Artists

A real lover of hip hop music in Chicago, Rizzi Konway has been very active in the music community as early as 2009! He has created a vast network of seriously talented underground Chicago artists, due to the fact that his style and flow is authentic and unexaggerated. Being multi talented as well, he originally got his start in music producing with ProTools. Rizzi has been getting recognized in front of audiences at handful of venues, performing at spots like Refuge, Olympic Theater, the Abbey, Subterranean, Beat Kitchen, even Daley Plaza for Chicago Sizzle Radio, and frequenting open mics at venues like Uncommon Ground and Innjoy. His efforts thus far has even gotten him an interview for Artist PR.

Since joining Tiny Chain Gang, he has seen more releases, like his projects BLKDMN & DIGITAL, and Rizzi is back with another one called MORNING/MOURNING. This release will feature many popular and underground artists, giving you the scope of his reach within the hip hop music community in Chicago. Names you should be familiar with like BaSkaveli, MOE CYRUS, Will Is Chillin’, Vantablac SOL, EELSIRCC, Rebel Legato and DJ Hool. The first lines of this whole project can summarize his mentality and effort with his music and life, “Workin, workin, workin, never sleepin’. A paper chase is wearing out my feet, can’t take a break cause rest is for the weak. If you cut my pay, decapitate a thief.”

Straight off the bat, MORNING/MOURNING hits you with awe, but to get more of an idea of his complete style and energy keep listening. The very next track, IT’S US, shines light on his more suave side, with an R&B beat, a catchy chorus, and 4+ artist on one song, you can catch a vibe easily, but wait till you hear BET IT ALL. From raw to smooth, he jumps into playfulness, positivity and motivation with enlightening lyricism on the following track, ELEVATE with EELSIRCC and Rebel Legato. “My n*gga we risin up, im living the life I love, so I’m reaching the skies above, we can get high enough.” The first half of MORNING/MOURNING sets you up nicely for the latter half, as he juggles retrospection, raw lyricism and lo-fi tracks that can soothe your soul.

Rizzi Konway | Soundcloud | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Ever Evolved | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | Instagram

Artist of the Week: Jai the Artist Debut LP

There is a first for everything and for any artist it is always a big milestone. Coming out of Ever Evolved Studio, Jai the Artist has been hard at work to hit a very important milestone! Jai has been on such a journey to make it up to this milestone you would be surprised to find that her most recent release, Fluffy’s Playground, is the debut project. From her singles to events and travels, Jai put in real effort into making this project quality.

Upon hearing Jai skillful lyricism and composure on the mic you instantly recognize this woman is as seasoned as a veteran emcee. Although her debut project, she is no stranger to the mic. She may have done more in the making of this project than many people do in their dreams! Releasing singles to tease the project, only a couple actually making it onto the Playground. Jai also been hitting up venues left and right to get recognized from the West Coast Los Angeles to the East Coast, Florida.

All that experience can really put you in the right mindset to execute a debut project of this quality. Getting every detail right to the production value and collaborators. In Ever Evolved studios with RhymSter on production the whole way through, making every beat crisp and hard hitting. Also featuring artists like Bunny Liiu, Italo, Essse Guey, and Radcliff Music to add some raw lyrical credibility for those doubters! Fluffy’s Playground takes you onto a ride through hype, raw street bravado to beats to chill and smoke too. A trophy of a debut project, available to stream everywhere.

JaiTheArtist | Soundcloud | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Ever Evolved Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | Instagram

Artist of the Week: DJ Heily B Debuts His EDM EP

There are not much milestones like the first and for an artist they can be significant. This month DJ Heily B hits a big one as he debuts his first ep. Not out of no where however, Heily B has been working on single releases for the longer end of the year, practicing, getting better and more creative each time. More known as an electronic dance music DJ, spinning for events and venues around Chicago and event a couple of times for Ever Evolved events as well, Heily B has picked up producing along the way.

From his first release BREAD BOWL to ELECTRONIC DANCING MUSIC EP, there is quite a difference that can represent his growth as a producer, but the quality was present from the start. The EP itself is a quick 4 song package packed with energy reaching into diverse genres. Heily never seemed to stick with a single genre from the start and from beginning to end the EDM EP takes you on a audio trip. From the future bass track FORGET A DAY bearing feminine vocals, the hispanic lingo over a dubstep beat in DIVIDE, to the bass and riddim style ending out the EP. Heily B really puts Respect on his name with this release. If you missed his ep release party at The Auxillary Art Center, press play and live through it vicariously.

DJ Heily B | Soundcloud | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Ever Evolved | Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Artist of the Week: Chore Boy

A few weeks ago many artists in the Chicago hip hop scene sent Chore Boy off in style onto new career horizons as he goes city hopping for the better half of a year. While we are sad to see him go, we are also quite excited to see what he will do with his time outside Chicago. Danny Rahrig aka Chore Boy is artist of the week due to his outstanding productivity and output of music. We recognize his drive, vision and consistency as staple qualities of the kind of artist we like to push!

Earlier this year In January, Chore Boy dropped the LP EXORDIUM, fully produced by Brad Kemp, featuring Fashawn, Vagabond Maurice, MoeCyrus formerly known as Unkle Slump, M.Whise The Shogun, OG Denzo and more. He then dropped a single in February, another Brad Kemp production featuring Elly Tier of White Ppl  and Beloved Gang’s Matthew Payne. In May he released a remix of one of his EXORDIUM tracks featuring Orlando Coolridge and MfnMelo. Then in June, Chore Boy he had released STORIES YOU CAN TELL YOURSELF, fully produced by Brad Kemp featuring CantBuyDeem, Femdot, Zombie Manana, TomCat Trumpet and other Chicago standouts!

Last week Chore Boy released STILL LOCAL featuring Kasean and OG Denzo. This week he dropped NERO an EP produced by Rice Master Yen, a german born boom bap producer, featuring Orlando Coolridge on two joints. We also have undisclosed word of another Chore Boy and Brad Kemp album as well as a second Rice Master Yen EP coming out before 2019 is over. Besides his own output he was featured on Super King Reza’s album MOSEY, Handsome Naked’s album “DOORS“, and CantBuyDeem’s single FAKE, featuring Cado San. That is an insanely high level of productivity, more than well deserving of an artist of the week slot on Ever Evolved. 

His most recent recorded project NERO is four track ep with two of the records toting verses from Orlando Coolridge on “TUCK EVERLASTING” and “PEPITAS“. “Thats just how it be sometimes” rings true on the second record over an eerie alien like instrumental having to do with seeing ghosts and battling demons. Possibly sleep paralysis too! “PEPITAS” is a sarcastic and witty boom bap rap track with a beautiful harp melody in the instrumental. Coolridge drops his second verse ending the whole song with “You come at me with the work well I’ll be laying you off, gone!” Chore Boy wraps up the extended playlist with “ACTRESS” where he plays with the word ‘act‘ in a string of rhymes having to do with a strained relationship. This leads into a short hook “Its far from over”…ending the ep with on an ere of wanting more raps, cuts, chops, and thick features from one of the hardest working and most productive emcees in the game, Chore Boy. 

Rest assured, this will not be the last you hear about Chore Boy in 2019, and 2020 is shaping up to look like another explosive year for him. 

Choreboy | Soundcloud | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Ever Evolved | Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

 

 

Artist Of The Week: Blaqrock Reigns In A New Era With Their New Single Mass Appeal

Ever since releasing their hit EP NO LOVE FOR BLAQKID back in 2018, Chicago rap-rock band Blaqrock have established themselves as a force to be reckoned with on the local scene. Having performed at some of the biggest indie venues in the city, Metro and Cubby Bear just to name a couple, this band has garnered as much clout as anyone. And what is even more impressive is how they have done it in such a short time span.

Back on August 2 Blaqrock closed the door on the NO LOVE FOR BLAQKID era with the release of their new single MASS APPEAL. This gem of a track possesses the same passion and energy as the material on their debut EP, except here everything is turned up a notch. In between the explosive cohesiveness of the rhythm section and lead singer, Gardner McFadden‘s feverishly intense vocal performance, Blaqrock has shown a great deal of growth and progression.

The passion and energy I spoke on before translated into an unbelievable live set at the MASS APPEAL single release party back on August 1 at HVAC Pub. Though it was a Thursday night and they did not go on until almost midnight, the venue was packed full of Blaqrock enthusiasts anxiously awaiting the arrival of their new single. There was a certain energy in the air and they tapped into it from the very beginning of their set.

Right around midnight with the crowd standing shoulder to shoulder in eager anticipation, drummer Danny Delgado let it rip on the opening drum hits to MASS APPEAL. What took place over the next four-plus minutes can only be described as magical. Every drum hit from Danny Delgado‘s kit was jaw-crushing. Every note from Myles Bacon‘s guitar was a searing streak of light penetrating your soul. Austen Goebel‘s poignant bass playing was a gentle staccato hum you can feel at the bottom of your feet. And of course, Gardner McFadden’s frenetic vocals strike you to the core to the point of numbness.

Between the intensity of Blaqrock’s performance and how the crowd reacted, the noise levels at HVAC bordered on deafening. There are not too many artists who can accomplish that on a random after hours show on a hot, muggy August night but Blaqrock showed that they are more than capable. For this reason, if you follow the Chicago scene, then I can guarantee you that Blaqrock is an artist you most certainly will not want to sleep on.

“Mass Appeal” is now available on all platforms.

Blaqrock | Youtube | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Ever Evolved Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | Instagram

Artist Of The Week: Ajani Jones Embodies Growth On His Debut Album Dragonfly

The dragonfly, in almost every part of the world symbolizes change and change in the perspective of self realization; and the kind of change that has its source in mental and emotional maturity and the understanding of the deeper meaning of life.

According to dragonfly-site.com, the Dragonfly serves as a metaphor for change and self-realization.

Bring in south-side MC Ajani Jones, whose debut album of the same name embodies these sentiments to a T. Released on July 16, DRAGONFLY is a 13-track, 47-minute essay on growth, adaptation and personal evolution. The final product is the journey that encompasses those three aforementioned, which result in Jones coming to a full actualization of who he is as an artist and human.

The opening track, JANI’S INTRO, kicks off with Ajani Jones conversing with his 11-year-old self, asking what this younger version of himself likes to do for fun. Jones looks back on a delicate time in his life which consisted of playing with roadblocks and hanging out with his cousins. There is a sense of innocence that little Ajani brings in this skit — a sense of purity that is yet to be tainted by the harsh realities of the outside world. As the conceptual arc of Dragonfly develops further, the innocence portrayed in the opening skit is threatened more and more.

Where Ajani Jones shines most on this album is how he grows from the obstacles that stand in his way. On DRAGONS he confronts the terrifying notion of his cousin being recruited by a gang. His flow and delivery hold the sense of urgency that comes with someone being under siege for the first time, often not knowing how to react. However Jones does not fold here; he fends off the temptation associated with his surroundings, keeping his head afloat and his feet planted firmly on the right path.

On LUCID, which pops up in the middle of the track list, Jones goes into detail about a call he received from his mother late one night while he was at the studio. After checking his bank account she was left wondering how Jones would pull through while lacking funds. Jones however appears calm and collected despite the dire circumstances, confident he will pull through once again. As the second leg of the album progresses, the obstacles only continue to pile up.

PLUTO sees Jones and his mother dealing with their house being foreclosed on, as well as loved ones he has lost due to Chicago’s gun violence. On the closing track TIME FLIES, Jones confronts how lost he felt as a kid searching for a god to believe. He also touches on the fractured relationship between the police and the black community. Despite closing out on a somewhat somber note, the underlying notion that Jones has made becomes abundantly clear. He has refused to succumb to all of the obstacles that have stood before him, instead using them as periods of intense personal growth.

Aside from the well fleshed-out, conceptual arc of the album, the beats and lyrics are noteworthy by themselves. Lyrically Jones displays loads of technical skill on every song here. His wordplay is sharp and the pictures he paints holds a quality of vividness that so few MC’s have. His flow and delivery are equally as gripping as he delivers his verses with a robust sense of urgency. The instrumentals shine as well, ranging from bleak and dreary sounding to jazzy and laid-back. Jones did a great job of picking beats that fit the mood he was in on a given track.

On the beginning of DRAGONFLY, Ajani Jones is an 11-year-old kid unaware of the cold, harsh truths that have yet to invite themselves into his life. What comes after is the battle to either grow within himself, or fall victim to the obstacles that are constantly standing in his way. Jones not only chose to grow, he chose to grow triumphantly. How he conceptually realizes that over the course of an album is a true testament to that. That sentiment in combination with the moody production and lyrical dexterity from Jones himself makes for a great album. That is why Ajani Jones is this week’s Artist Of The Week.

Ajani Jones | Soundcloud | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Ever Evolved Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | Instagram

Artist Of The Week: RhymSter

Building his way to the living legend title, he is well known in many underground Chicago hip hop circles. RhymSter has been making a big name for himself in Chicago and it is due to his determination from a young age to be one of the best emcees. Having left his imprint on the 606 Chicago nights at Subterranean and open mics across the board with his freestyle talent, this young emcee quickly got connected with the right people and follows through.

Connecting with the right people plays a big role in an artists success and RhymSter can identify these people with ease! Knowing that, the Chicago emcee got himself to open for popular artists like Dave East and Curren$y, twice. Right now actually, he awaits to open up for the iconic Method Man and Redman this August at Joes in Rosemont. Through his network RhymSter also finds opportunities to collaborate with talented artists and promoters in and out of state.

Networking not only as an artist emcee, RhymSter also helps run a music studio and sets up events as one of the main partners under Ever Evolved. Through this platform he not only invites himself to work with other artists, promoters and venue owners, but he gets to help influence the scene. With over dozens of artists in his contact list through either recording, producing for or collaborating with, he easily puts together local artists, djs and hosts to express their talents on stage! Artists from Los Angeles, Omaha, St. Louis, New York and Michigan, to name a few, have worked with RhymSter and Ever Evolved in either Chicago or their own hometowns, giving one another opportunities for their talents to be seen and heard.

Taking that knowledge RhymSter uses it to perfect his own craft and promote himself efficiently. All the experiences and people he has met has turned growth into quality! Allowing him to release music videos, interviews, singles, EP’s and LPS, beats and so on. If there is any question as to who this artist is the answers are not hard to find. The best way to know him is through his music as he tells it how it is and what made him who he is, through his lyricism.

Between recording artists, producing music, planning events and connecting with promoters, visual artists, designers, studio collectives and businesses, RhymSter still finds time to speak his peace. With a handful of hit singles and music videos, an album and an EP, there is plenty of content for you to get familiar with. Get familiar with why many artists new and old in Chicago look up to and respect RhymSter. From his freestyle flow and writing, to his ideas and business savvy, it is all raw, authentic and unique.

Expressing quite a bit of activity this year from the studio, RhymSter has released music videos animated by Neorevivalist, his PURE NOON EP with Edmur Quinn and a remix of GHOST. Also being introduced to the EDM community, RhymSter collaborated with Chicago duo Ayoo on their hit single TIMELINE that was released under Artist Intelligence Agency record label last month in June. Most recently he released an original beat with Frekwenzy. As a distorted RhymSter verses his way though a sinister beat and Rodneys Dangerfield sound bites, he again takes on another creative direction with DANGERFIELD. Try and figure out this mans next move you cannot!

Rhymster | Twitter | Soundcloud | Facebook | Instagram

Ever Evolved | Soundcloud | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Radcliff Music: Artist of the Week

Consistency, hard work, perseverance and an eagerness to learn to be one of the best! Anthony Radcliff aka Radcliff Music is in a league all in his own making. He raps, produces, engineers himself and he freestyles his ass off, just ask 606. And above all he actually drops records regularly and is in the process of building a catalog and legacy that will cement him as a hip hop legend. 

Radcliff has been making literal moves, he recently got back from a show in Omaha Nebraska, and is now in LA doing a show with the majority of the Ever Evolved team. He is opening up for Method Man and Red Man mid August opened up for Cam’Ron earlier this year and Curren$y, twice. He has been dropping self produced tapes and singles this throughout 2019 and we are only halfway done with the year. Also dropping a remix and music video to Big L’s Flamboyant track a few weeks ago into June. I don noy know what else to call that besides real, hard work.

Radcliff Music is the truth and not the gimmick, in reference to his song, because he actually lives off of music and hip hop. He can freestyle or write, he can compose a beat, he does not need backing vocals, he is nice with the hooks, and he is nice with the lyrics and the flow. With a catalog of already over 50 songs released Ever Evolve recognizes Radcliff Music for his dedication to the craft of music and record making. Some of his popular tracks include WATCH ME off of his POP QUIZ project, his single Fall N Off, and his new single STEELERS!

Radcliff is gearing up to take the stage with Essse, CMac, JaiTheArtist, UNDFTD of the North, and William Bolanos in Los Angeles, California in collaboration with ScoBrazy, Octo5quid, Keyblayd and Bunny Liiu. He is about to put on and represent for the city of Chicago and show the West Coast how real, off the cuff spitters perform and express the culture of hip hop. Salute to Radcliff Music.

Radcliff | Soundcloud Facebook | Twitter

Ever Evolved | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | Instagram