If you’re like me, and a gross lack of funds has turned two potential Coachella weekends into one giant “no-Chella” weekend, you may be a little bummed that you’ll be missing out on some good live music (including a rumored Daft Punk performance). Sure, all your friends will be gushing about their presumably non-sober experiences dancing to new Phoenix songs and making out to Beach House with strangers. But contrary to popular belief, Coachella isn’t the only hot ticket in town this April. In fact, for the Southern California Hip-Hop fan, there will be more than enough activities to keep you busy.
April 6: Shlohmo at the Fonda Theater
This week, LA-based producer and Low End Theory favorite, Shlohmo will be debuting his new AV set at the Fonda with special guests, Jeremih and Nite Jewel. Shlohmo’s latest 5-track EP, Laid Out, is currently out on Friends of Friends Music and features a cameo from Tom Krell of How to Dress Well.
April 16 & April 17: Aesop Rock
Aesop is scheduled to play at Coachella, and between the two Coachella weekends, he’ll be stopping by The Constellation Room in Santa Ana as well as one of my personal favorite venues, The Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach. Last year, Aesop released a well-received LP on Rhymesayers titled, Skelethon, and he’s currently working on a project with Moldy Peaches vocalist, Kimya Dawson.
April 17: Lee Fields & the Expressions with Lady
Truth & Soul Records has been one of my favorite labels, shaping Lee Fields’ My World and Problems into modern soul classics. Luckily, Fields along with Truth & Soul’s house band, The Expressions, will be bringing their raw-honeyed soul sound to Los Angeles at The Troubador. Opening the tour will be one of Truth & Soul’s newest acts, Lady, whose self-titled debut is certainly worth a listen.
April 18 & April 19: RJD2
It’s hard to imagine that the magnificent Deadringer was released more than 10 years ago. Nostalgic Hip-Hop heads may want to witness this live vinyl set from RJD2, as he’ll be dropping by the Echoplex in LA on April 18 and The Observatory in Santa Ana on April 19. Although RJD2 hasn’t released a full-length album since 2010’s The Colossus, he’s most recently collaborated with vocalist Aaron Livingston to form the project, Icebird, whose 2011 release, The Abandoned Lullaby is also worth checking out.
April 26: DJ Shadow
Celebrating his latest release, the “All Bases Covered” mix, Josh Davis, otherwise known as DJ Shadow, will be stopping by The Observatory in Santa Ana. If you’re like me, and Shadow’s music played a monumental role in your introduction (or rather, ENDtroduction) to instrumental Hip-Hop, you don’t want to miss this DJ set.
With these shows on the horizon, I can’t guarantee you that your stories will be even half as interesting as the ones coming from your friends frolicking in Indio, but at least you’ll be hearing some sweet sounds. April, here we come.
-Words by Sash