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Chicago’s Growing Concerns Poetry Collective use kindness to unite people against bigotry

The three members of Growing Concerns Poetry Collective all juggle other practices outside their collaboration. Their CVs are too extensive to discuss exhaustively, but poet McKenzie Chinn has built a career acting onstage (she’s a Goodman Theatre regular) and on TV (she has a recurring role on CBS’s Chicago-based drama The Red Line). She also […]

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Musa Reems and David Ashley bolster the lineup for one of the winter’s best Chicago rap shows

Chicago rapper-singer Rich Jones brought his multigenerational monthly hip-hop series All Smiles to a close in April 2019, but its spirit lives on at this Subterranean show he’s headlining. The bill includes great local MCs who might not otherwise have any reason to cross paths, beginning with up-and-comer Musa Reems. On his recent self-released EP, […]

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Chicago rapper-producer Malci polishes up his frenzied outre sound on Papaya!

In 2017, Chicago rapper-producer Malci dropped his impressive third album, Do You Know Yourself, smoothing cacophonous shards of samples into outre-pop songs with an oddball charm. Malci has plenty of comrades in the local scene, some of whom he’s turned into collaborators too: he produced almost half of Mykele Deville’s February record, Maintain, and he […]

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Chicago rapper Mykele Deville shows why he’s one to watch this year with Maintain

Any media outlet referencing west-side native Mykele Deville should be required to include a brief of his CV, partially because he’s established himself as proficient in several roles: poet, actor, educator, and rapper. And with the remarkable growth he shows on his new seven-song album, Maintain (on local DIY label No Trend), I imagine Deville’s […]

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Multidisciplinary Chicago artist Mykele Deville brings hip-hop history to the present on Peace, Fam

On “Unqualified” Chicagoan Mykele Deville takes breaks from rapping about code-switching and cultural colonization to drop in skits that show the peculiar challenges he’s faced as a black person in a white space—or perhaps simply show strangers that he’s filled with multitudes, like anyone else. “Well, look, I wasn’t really just calling myself a rapper—I […]