Lollapalooza 2018: A conversation with Evanston-born artist Femdot


(Ally Mauch/Daily Senior Staffer)

Femdot performs on the American Eagle stage at Lollapalooza Saturday. This was the Evanston-born artist’s first appearance at the Chicago music festival.

Ally Mauch, Summer Managing Editor

In his early performance at Lollapalooza’s American Eagle stage Saturday, Femdot brought all the energy. Fresh off releasing his album “Delacreme 2” and graduating from DePaul University with a biology degree in the spring, the Evanston-born and Chicago-raised hip hop artist performed for a small but mighty crowd in his first ever Lollapalooza appearance. The Daily caught up with Femdot on Friday to talk about what inspires his music and what he was looking forward to at the festival.

This interview has been edited for brevity and clarity.

The Daily: How does your science background affect the way you make music?

Femdot: It’s this idea of biology being the study of life — it humanizes things. I look at things to try and humanize somebody … I try to understand the context. All science is is putting things in context and that’s all that music is. When you look at (music) with that perspective of putting things in context and trying to understand the human element of what this person is writing or feeling, it changes the whole experience of music itself. Also, science is very technical and I look at music very technically too. It’s like taking the scientific method and applying that to making an album. I have to plan everything out, I have to hypothesize and change it if it doesn’t fit.

The Daily: Where do you draw inspiration from?

Femdot: As I got older, I realized there was way more music in my house than I thought there was. My siblings were all involved with music. My mom is a phenomenal dancer — she was always dancing and playing music around the house. My siblings got me into hip hop and R&B, and then outside of (my family) it’s just the city. Before I release anything, I play it driving down Lake Shore Drive at least once. The first time I played “Delacreme” by myself, I had my headphones on and I just walked through different neighborhoods. I walked downtown, through the South Side, in Uptown, in Pilson and a couple other places just to see what it feels like. And it felt different in every place, but it felt like home, and I was like “Ok, I think we’re ready now.” There’s just something about (Chicago) that does something to the music and puts it in place. And it does something to us — it keeps us authentic, it builds character, it’s the reason we all are the way we are.

The Daily: What are you most excited for at Lollapalooza this weekend?

Femdot: My family is going to be in town, and my friends. I get to share this experience with them. When I started this project, I was saying I wanted to put myself in a situation where I could change the situation of me and my friends and this is a little glimpse of that. A lot of them have never been to Lolla before and now they don’t have to worry about it, we can come out and we can perform and we can all enjoy this moment together as friends. That’s what I’m really excited for, to see the look on their faces. I can turn my head and look and see them cheesin’.

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