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Top 50 Chicago Projects of 2020

It’s obvious that 2020 didn’t turn out nearly how anyone expected at the top of the year. With a global pandemic shaking things up, a pivotal presidential election coming to a head, numerous generational talents passing away, and racial injustice protests taking place across the country, it’s safe to say that this year was beyond unpredictable from even the most seasoned psychics. Nonetheless, Chicago persevered like only we know-how, bringing attention to these issues while also divulging into a plethora of other, more personal narratives in the form of music. Throughout the year, some mainstays in the city continued to impress us here at Lyrical Lemonade while other up-and-comers made some very valid, attention-grabbing claims as to why they’re the next rising star that deserves a place at the table. Also worthy of note, Chicago had some truly excruciating losses this year in terms of music legends whose work still shined through as some of the most impressive of the year, primed to carry on their legacy for years to come. All of that said, we’re more than excited to round this farfetched year out with Lyrical Lemonade’s Top 50 Chicago Projects of 2020. This is our 5th year bringing …

Cheap Vacations – [Tobi Lou]

Tobi Lou is someone who I find myself talking about often whether that’s while covering his new music releases or telling people about his music in “who’ve you been listening to” conversations, I am a super fan of Tobi. Late last night, Tobi Lou released a new music video for “Cheap Vacations” featuring Facer, this song was a favorite of mine on his Live On Ice album that dropped last year so I was thrilled to see it receive the proper visual that it deserved. Tobi Lou and Glassface just might be the best artist – director combo in the entire music industry for my money, they always put out an amazing product and sure enough, they did their thing again on this one. Check out this brand new music video below!

femdot: The Lemonade Stand Interview

femdot is an artist out of Chicago that has been steadily improving as an emcee + building his fanbase consistently for a few years now, he is known as arguably the best bar-for-bar rapper out of Chicago, and he is a personal favorite of ours here at Lyrical Lemonade. 2019 proved to be femdot’s best year yet musically as he dropped his project 94 Camry Music and went on his first tour alongside Tobi Lou, and despite all of the hardships that came with 2020, fem has had yet another productive campaign this year. In this interview we speak about everything such as his college experience, attending Homewood Flossmoor, his family, his storytelling ability, meeting Cole Bennett in class at DePaul, starring in the “Lone Springs” short film and so much more. Take a few minutes to watch this new interview below and make sure you keep up with fem by giving him a follow on Twitter here!

So and So [Saba] x [Flex Lennon]

“I was talking with some friends recently, and we were talking about vulnerability. My idea or explanation of it immediately went to dealing with adversity and sharing that experience of overcoming it. Everybody kind of came to that conclusion for it. And another friend brought up the fact that sharing joy and sharing happiness is also vulnerable” – Saba After a brief music hiatus, Chicago native and Pivot Gang veteran Saba recently dropped a satisfying two song bundle. The first of the pair is titled “So and So,” which is a brief, yet addictive banger produced by Flex Lennon. Lennon’s instrumental incorporates a nice mixture of a soothing melody with up-tempo 808’s, which perfectly aligns with Saba’s lowkey yet striking signature flow. The paired track is titled “Areyoudown Pt. 2,” which is jointly produced by fellow Pivot Gang member daedaePIVOT & Hawaii based producer Mr. Carmack. Lasting just 121 seconds, the song admittedly sounds effortless due its length, but per usual Saba somehow maintains his perfect enjoyability record. Not to mention, the subject matter is quite serious despite the track’s short duration, as Saba reflects on various mental afflictions that he’s had to overcome. Unafraid of expressing his vulnerabilities, Saba …

Areyoudown? Pt.2 – [Saba] ft. [tobi loui]

When talking about some of the biggest names in Chicago, there is no question that the talented Saba will come up in that conversation. For years, he has proven himself to be one of the most talented artists who often deviates further than rap. Saba recently teamed up with equally impressive and fellow Chicagoan tobi lou to drop their new single, Areyoudown? Pt. 2. The successor to Saba’s Timezone/Whip (areyoudown?) which dropped over 5 years ago, Saba delivers a dystopian sound on the new single that I haven’t heard before. It’s unique and flows incredibly well and proves Saba’s ability to try out new deliveries for his rhymes. tobi lou also dropped an iconic verse that really emphasizes his talented voice and gives us this iconic line, “It’s tobi lou and Saba b-tch You don’t really want no problem”. That line really encompasses how well this duo works together and I really hope we can see more from the two in the near future. Until then check out the new single down below. Produced by Daedae, Daoud & Mr. Carmack  

Okay – [Tobi Lou] x [Dreezy]

Whenever Chicago legend Tobi Lou drops new music, it feels like a holiday. The only thing that could make a Tobi Lou song better though, is a feature from a fellow Chicagoan on the song, and that’s just the case today as he dropped a new offering titled “Okay” featuring Dreezy! Tobi Lou has been feeding his fanbase a ton of content so far in 2020, and I have a good feeling that the project his fans have been impatiently anticipating will be dropping before the year is over. This song started off super upbeat and Tobi found the perfect pocket of the beat + attacked it with different flows for a couple of minutes, delivering a melody that is sure to get stuck in your head. The verse from Dreezy on the backend of this song was the perfect complement to what Tobi provided at the start of the song, putting the cherry on top of a great song and I believe I speak for all Tobi + Dreezy fans when I saw hopefully we see them collab again in the future. Take some time to stream this new release on Spotify below!

Notice Me – [Tobi Lou]

It’s always a pleasure whenever we receive new content from Chicago’s own Tobi Lou, and lucky for us, that’s pretty often these days. Today, Tobi is back on our website with his brand new music video for “Notice Me” featuring Mia Gladstone and it’s nothing you want to miss out on. At some point we have to have a serious conversation about just how special Tobi Lou’s music videos are, seriously, Tobi + Glassface always come through with timeless content again + again, and I think it’s only right that we give them their flowers while we still can. I loved the background scenery of this visual, it was shot in what looks to be like California with some beautiful mountains + skylines in the background, which complimented the soothing song so well. I could keep talking about this release but I will stop to let you get to it, watch this awesome new music video below! Produced by G-SLOW

Endorphins – [Tobi Lou]

Tobi Lou has been blessing his massive fanbase with sensational content seemingly every single week for a minute now, and late last night, he continued that trend with his new release titled “Endorphins”. I have raved about Tobi Lou + his talents time and time again on our website, he is easily one of my favorite artists in the world so I do have that bias, but without that considered, he really does keep outdoing himself with every release. This track here is a little more of a slower-paced song compared to a lot of Tobi’s music, he got introspective on this joint which I enjoyed, and then at a certain point, he picked up the tempo in a tasteful way. Tobi is a Chicago treasure that we need to champion more as a city, I believe he will be regarded as one of the best from Chicago all-time when it’s all said and done. A massive statement considering the greats that have come from these streets, but I stand by it. Stream this new joint via Spotify below!

Pretty Much – [Tobi Lou]

Chicago is a city that has been thriving musically but for some reason doesn’t get as much credit as it deserves, there is a countless amount of great creatives doing their thing right now from Chicago, but near the top of the pack is Tobi Lou. Last year Tobi released his album Live On Ice that I strongly believe was a top-five project to come out of Chicago last year, so 2020 came with a lot of expectations for Tobi, but he has stepped up + delivered sensational songs one after another so far this year. Not only this, but Tobi has complimented many of these songs with amazing visuals to match, and the same can be said about this release here. Watch this new music video below, and if you’re a fan of what Tobi is doing, then support him by sharing this video link with a friend! Directed by Tobi Lou, Glassface + StayNeutral

Pretty Much – [Tobi Lou]

Tobi Lou is one of the many gems that is coming out of Chicago, he’s an unbelievably skilled artist who is finding himself back on our website today with the release of his new song titled “Pretty Much”. When I think about some of my favorite songs that have been released over the past year or two, plenty of Tobi songs come to mind, so every time he releases new content I always get a rush of excitement + eagerness to listen! I’ve been streaming this song over and over again for the past thirty minutes or so, and it’s safe to say that Tobi has come through yet again with a great song! This joint is just as addicting as all of Tobi’s music is, which might be the most valuable trait of his, his entire catalog has reply value. I can keep going but I will let you get to it, listen to this new tune below!