I met Squeak in Saba’s grandparent’s basement. The walls were plastered with magazine covers, the space stuffed with recording equipment and video games. A memory not easily forgotten—I’ve probably told this story a thousand times, in writing and in person. It was 2016, a year after the first time I interviewed Saba and a couple […]
Tag: John Walt
Pivot Gang celebrate the life of a fallen member at the third annual John Walt Day
The members of west-side collective Pivot Gang have been calling themselves a boy band since long before Brockhampton was a twinkle in Kevin Abstract’s eye. Because Joseph Chilliams, Frsh Waters, MFn Melo, and Saba all rap, this self-description has caused some confusion, but as Pivot Gang see it, there’s not much to differentiate them from, […]
Folk project DPCD celebrates a graceful, uncluttered new album
Folk project DPCD celebrates a graceful, uncluttered new album, the John Walt Foundation holds its annual Dinner With John fund-raiser, and more.
Chicago rap crew Pivot Gang honor a fallen comrade
Pivot Gang cofounder John Walt is memorialized in Saba’s Care for Me—and by an arts nonprofit that bears his name, which holds its flagship concert fund-raiser this weekend.
The classic Smoking Popes lineup releases its first full-length in nearly two decades
The classic Smoking Popes lineup releases its first full-length in nearly two decades, not-quite-retired Chicago rapper E.C. Illa reissues two old Kanye collabs, and more.
Saba confronted grief and found joy in his Pitchfork set
In his first local show of the year, Chicago rapper Saba balanced his desire to honor a murdered friend with the necessity to entertain a huge festival crowd.
Charlie Coffeen of Sidewalk Chalk gives Dilla’s Donuts the big-band treatment
Charlie Coffeen of Sidewalk Chalk gives Dilla’s Donuts the big-band treatment, John Walt’s arts mentorship foundation hosts a fund-raising dinner on the anniversary of the rapper’s death, and more.
Joseph Chilliams talks about the losses he overcame to release one of the year’s best Chicago hip-hop albums
Pivot Gang cofounder Joseph Chilliams released his debut, Henry Church, in August, after months of career highs and personal lows—including the death of friend and collaborator Dinner With John.
RIP Chicago rapper-singer Dinner With John, cofounder of Pivot Gang
Dinner With John, born Walter Long Jr. and formerly known as John Walt, was stabbed to death yesterday at age 24.
Pivot Gang’s MFn Melo is the next stop for whoever got hooked on Saba’s Comfort Zone
If you’re looking to get hooked on solo work from one of Saba’s collaborators from Pivot Gang, try MFn Melo.
Five honors students from Chicago rap’s freshman class
Five honors students from Chicago rap’s freshman class: Alex Wiley, Saba, Spenzo, Taylor Bennett, and ZMoney
Learn how to bop from the masters
Lil Kemo and Dlow recently dropped a couple songs-slash-videos with instructions on how to bust a move like a bop king.