SEARCH FOR: TOP 50 CHICAGO PROJECTS

Same Day – [OG Stevo]

I know I talk extensively about just how underrated and amazing the music scene is here in Chicago, but it’s just something that is constantly on my mind, and if no one else is going to praise it the way it should be, I’m going to shout it from the rooftops until I’m blue in the face if it means that one more listener is put on to the blossoming sounds here. Considering Our Top 50 Chicago Projects of 2021 just came out a few weeks ago, it’s still fresh on my mind, and it’s something that I find myself constantly sharing with others in order to show them exactly how diverse the styles are here in the Windy City. Year after year, there are a variety of names who find themselves featured on the list, and rightfully so, but one of my absolute favorite local icons is OG Stevo. He’s definitely not a new name to regular Lyrical Lemonade consumers or fans of the local music in this city, but I can’t believe the amount of complexity and adaptability he portrays throughout his extensive and impressive discography, which is one of the many reasons why his project Days in …

Watch femdot’s new interview with NAST Podcast

femdot has a magnificent year in 2021, his new project is widely considered one of the best to come out of the city this year, and he recently even appeared in the Top 10 of our Top 50 Chicago Projects article. The host Blake asked femdot about plenty of things such as his new project Not For Sale, being an independent artist, his non-profit, his performance on COLORS, how he met Cole Bennett while they both attended DePaul, the meaning of “bussin”, and they even talked about fem’s signature mechanical pencil. This was a solid interview, learn a thing or two about fem by watching this interview below!

First Impression – [Ohana Bam] ft. [Mamii]

I may be biased because Chicago is the wonderful city that I am lucky enough to call home, but the music scene here is literally as diverse as it can possibly get. It almost feels as if there is our own little renaissance happening where artists don’t feel the need to conform or be anything but their authentic selves, and the sounds that are coming from this Midwestern city are unlike anything you’d find anywhere else. After artists like Chief Keef, Lil Durk, and G Herbo put on for the city with their drill movement, the rest of the country finally started to recognize the potential that we possess here, and artists have taken that and ran with it, and I just wish there was some sort of playlist or full discography somewhere that we could check out in order to see all of these versatile styles in one place. The dexterity of this city is always on my mind, but it always seems to shock me as we put together the Top 50 Chicago Projects of the Year list, something that we just dropped earlier this week that you need to check out if you haven’t had time quite …

Unapologetic – [Polo G] ft. [NLE Choppa]

The music scene in Chicago has always been absolutely dominant, and no matter how much the rest of the country may sleep on our more locally recognized talents, there are definitely some bigger names that are putting on for our city, and I couldn’t be more excited about that. It’s crazy that when I think back about a decade ago, Chief Keef was making unheard of waves, and I truly didn’t know what other emcees would be able to step up and join him in the spotlight. Since then, artists like Durk, Herb, Bibby, and others definitely lived up to those massive expectations and even exceeded them, so I’m always trying to pay attention to who would be next. The artist that undeniably fit into this role was Polo G, and even before he released his album THE GOAT, he had an unmatched string of hits throughout his discography, so all of the recognition he’s been receiving is definitely well-deserved. This year, he dropped Hall of Fame which ended up at the top of our Top 50 Chicago Projects of 2021 list, which you should check out if you haven’t already, but he continued his dominance by releasing a deluxe …

Top 50 Chicago Projects of 2021

Every year, artists hailing from Chicago prove exactly why this is a city that belongs in the upper echelon of music, and this fact grows more abundantly obvious with every release that is put out. Whether a musician is world renown or locally recognized, there is never a shortage of creativity, effort, or innovation, and whether the rest of the country notices this or not, local fans are well aware of the goldmine that we are sitting on here in the Midwest.  Our goal here at Lyrical Lemonade has always been to shine a light on the remarkable sounds coming out of the city every single year, and even when we go in with certain expectations or presumptions, our minds are absolutely blown once we realize just how much dexterous and unique music was brought to life in the span of 12 short months. One thing that is inimitable within the local scene here is simply the sense of community because whether these talents are teaming up with one another or on entirely different levels of fame, everyone seems to show love to each other, ensuring their awareness of the eye-opening and head-turning styles that are being generated across the …

Backseat – [NNAMDï] & [Lynyn]

The city of Chicago’s dexterous and diverse music scene is something that never fails to impress me, and the artists who are all contributing to this mixture are countless. Out of everyone in the city making music right now, NNAMDï is probably one of my favorites, and that’s not very hard for me to admit whatsoever. I first heard about him when putting together our Top 50 Chicago Projects of 2020 list with his album BRAT, but that was just the beginning of my admiration of the unique musician. He can mix so many different genres and sounds together with ease, and I am never not impressed with this hip-hop innovator, so I can’t hold back my excitement when it comes to his upcoming EP Are You Happy, which is set to drop this Friday, November 12th. Instead of handling the production on this project like he normally does, he leaned on electronic artist Lynyn to handle the instrumentals, and if his brand-new single “Backseat” has anything to say about what we can expect, it should truly get fans excited. In this track, energetic, mystifying synths are mixed with plucky percussive elements and bouncy drums, paving a lighthearted, entertaining path …

Kill Bill – [Hatesonny]

Hatesonny is someone who I have been ranting + raving about here on our website and in conversations that I have been having with my music industry friends for about a year now. His project “Golden Child” was one of my personal favorite albums of last year, and it even earned a top 20 spot in my annual Top 50 Chicago Projects article. A couple of the standout records that were featured on that project were “Moon Child” and “Kill Bill”, and today we are receiving a music video for the latter of the two. I interviewed Hatesonny back in October of 2020 and at that point, his song “Kill Bill” maybe had about 10,000 streams on Spotify at the time. Today, that song has accumulated well over three million streams on Spotify between the fast + regular versions of the song. A massive part of this can be credited to the fast version of the track going viral on Tik-Tok, and opening the door for many people to see just how dope of an artist that Sonny is. A music video for this record was a necessity, and Sonny + his team came through with an excellent video if …

For The Fun – [Kiraly Payne]

One of my favorite things about the seven years that I have been with Lyrical Lemonade so far is the relationships that I have built with artists, especially from the Chicago/Chicagoland area. Kiraly Payne is someone who I met shortly after I started working for LL, he was a common attendee at our cyphers that we would host back in the day, and even then, I knew that he had superior rapping ability. When it comes to witty flows, unique rhyme patterns, and the mixture of melodic/straight-up rapping, not many can compete with Kiraly. Just a couple of days ago, Kiraly Payne released a new EP called “For The Fun”, and it has been on repeat in my rotation since its release. This was an all-around solid project that left me hungry for more music from him, but in the meantime, this EP will hold me over. It’s still only halfway through the year, but I would expect this EP to land on our Top 50 Chicago Projects article this year come December.

Bet On Me – [Goldenboymnny]

One name that I have been hearing about more and more over the past six months or so is Goldenboymnny, he’s a creative from Chicago that has been grinding + crafting his sound, and today is a big day for him as he just released his brand new project titled “Bet On Me”. This is a twelve-track tape that really puts Goldenboymnny’s range as an artist on full display, there’s something on this project that every hip-hop enthusiast can enjoy, especially if you like melodic rap or music that gives you those old school Soundcloud type of feels. I thoroughly enjoyed this project, it’s what I would consider a statement tape from Goldenboymnny, kicking down the door and letting us know that he is here to stay. There’s plenty of good music included in this project, but two of the standout tracks in my opinion are “She Lied” and “Bite The Bullet”. I have a good feeling once we get to December and I am preparing our Top 50 Chicago Projects of the year article, this one will be heavily in consideration, but don’t wait any longer, get familiar with this new music now. Stream this brand new project below …

Joyfriend drops five new songs!

Joyfriend is an alternative artist from the northwest suburbs of Chicago who I have become a massive fan of over the past five or six months. I first got familiar with Joyfriend through my older brother Eric, who suggested that I listened to his Dog Fight EP, and I enjoyed it so much that it even ended up landing a spot on our Top 50 Chicago projects year-end list. Since that point, I have had that project on repeat whether I am sitting at my desk here at the LL office or driving around the city, its replay value has only grown for me. Late last night, Joyfriend decided to bless us with two new EP’s, totaling five songs between the two. I have only run through the EPs a couple of times apiece, so I obviously have a lot more sitting to do with this music, but an instant standout to me has been the title track “The Princess Of December”. I have a good feeling about Joyfriend, I picture him continuing to grow as an artist and become one of the leaders in Chicago’s DIY/indie scene within the next year or two. Stream these amazing new records via …