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Local Artist Spotlight: Chill Moody

We are excited to introduce a new blog series, Local Artist Spotlight. Our hope is to highlight local artists’ careers, as well as the importance of paying it forward in our city. To kick it off, we felt that rapper and community leader, Chill Moody* was the perfect leading example.

West Philadelphia born and raised, Chill Moody is a jack of all trades. The modern day renaissance man debuted his lyrical flow back in 2009 with his album, WestChilly. Fast forward to 2017, he is a Music Ambassador of Philadelphia and Philadelphia magazine’s “Best Rapper.”. Chill Moody has also dedicated his career to seeking change in his community. He has a lot to share about his love for Philadelphia, giving back, and his latest business ventures. Read our interview with Chill below, for the breakdown behind the man and the music.

PPRG: Overall, you’ve had a lot of “nice things” happen for you throughout your musical journey. Can you recall what those beginning steps were like as an upcoming Philly artist working toward success?

Chill Moody: The start of this journey might have been my favorite part actually. With the overwhelming support from my family, friends, new fans, it was fresh and a lot of fun. The first four songs I had on the radio I recorded in my father’s basement, knowing nothing about being an audio engineer. (I still don’t lol.) We were just making undeniably good music, throwing our own showcases right from the jump in 2008 at Mill Creek Tavern. It was a lot of fun and a lot of learning.

PPRG:You’ve always made a point to mention this city, from your debut album Westchilly to your latest E.P. Its Gon’ Be A nice Year. It’s evident that Philadelphia has played a major part in your development as an artist. How has Philly has contributed to the sounds and the man that is Chill Moody?

Chill Moody: I am extremely prideful in the city that raised me, a proud Philly bul lol. As you know, Philly is a very tough; competitive, and creative city. Everyone is doing something or trying to get involved in the industry in some way. It makes you have to always be on your A game because, at any give. time, there are 20 people right behind you gunning for your position. They’re waiting for you to slip up. But on the flip side, there is a lot of unity, togetherness, and support from peers, which has helped me more than anything.

PPRG: There appears to be an evolution that’s happened through the course of your 5 projects. In Its Gon’ Be A nice Year, you mention a lot about progression and honing in on the artist that you’ve become. How would you describe the current stage in your career?

Chill Moody: Life’s changes are always going to shine through in my music. You can listen to these projects and know exactly what was going down in my life around that time. Whether it’s the stresses of student loans, finding love, losing love, or making strides in my career, my catalog plays like a timeline to my life. Each project had a natural progression because of life’s natural progression, and I only write about what I’m living. In the past, a lot my music was geared towards getting to where I am today. Now, my music today is talking about how I’ve always wanted to be here but also speaking on what I see next for me.

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PPRG: Would you attribute a lot of your success to the support that you’ve obtained from Philadelphia?

Chill Moody: Yeah. Honestly, all of it. It’s a pretty simple concept: you can’t take over the world if you don’t win at home first. You have to have your city behind you.

PPRG: Philly is the home to many musical legends. Coming up in the industry, were there any Philly artists that you were inspired by through their music and community impact?

Chill Moody: Growing up I admired the moves of Major Figgas & State Property. They had the streets on lock and moved as a unit, and I always admired that. Plus, nobody was weak; everybody had bars. As I got older and started moving into different crowds, I got put onto The Roots. I model a lot of what I do after those guys, from the live performance to the ways they always give back to Philly. It’s one of the most important things to me.

PPRG: The majority of your followers are more than aware of your community impact. For those who may not know, how do you think you’ve made an impact in the city?

Chill Moody: I feel like I’ve introduced hip hop culture to a lot of different pockets in this city. I’ve been blessed enough to be able to do this through my music, but it’s also been through just through having a voice and being present and prepared. I live and breathe hip hop. Everything I do exudes the hip hop culture, and I take that with me everywhere. So whether it’s a concert at City Hall, a TED talk, or me speaking to students at local universities, I’m there representing hip hop. I want to show people that there is no ceiling to where hip hop can take you. I’m always reminded of when Biggie said, “You never thought that hip hop could take it this far,” especially in moments like when i’m sitting in City Council chambers. I use it to help make decisions to further strengthen Philadelphia’s music community. #HipHopGotMeHere

PPRG: What makes you so committed to the responsibility of not only being an ambassador for Philadelphia music, but as well as seeking change in the community?

Chill Moody: It’s really simple, I care. No big explanation or scheme or anything. I just genuinely care about my city and if i’m in a position to help better it, I’m going to do so.

PPRG: What are you hoping to accomplish for Philadelphia through the impact of your service and music?

Chill Moody: I’m living my accomplishments daily. Being able to sit with City Council, we review bills and introduce issues that need to be addressed. For instance, we’re working to help rebuild the musical infrastructure in this city so our talent can shine here and not have to move to LA or ATL or NYC to “make it.” These are my missions. And I’m just getting started.

PPRG: You’re more than rapper. You’re a businessman. Your nicethings IPA craft beer has been the talk of the town, right along with your digital distribution label nicethingsMUSIC and clothing line. All of which is based in Philadelphia. What is it about the City of Brother Love that has made you want to stay and expand your lifestyle brand (nicethings) here?

Chill Moody: It’s all about reclaiming our spot in the industry. Growing up I heard stories about how “popping” Philly used to be. All the entertainers used to be in the city, and the studios were always packed. Anyone from The Jackson Five to David Ruffin would be in town at any given time. They were recording and seeking out Philadelphia talent to help them in their career. At some point, there was a decline in that. Artists stopped coming, studios started closing, people started to lose the pride for the city, and they took their talents elsewhere. Those people succeeded because, honestly, Philly is the quintessential “if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere” type of town. My mission has been to reclaim that prestigious position in the industry. My mission has been to re-build our cities industry so 5-10 years from now the “next Chill Moody” doesn’t have to leave the city to “make it.” I want to make sure there is enough opportunity and money here that you can stay and be that industry powerhouse you dreamed of being – in your hometown. Leaving to “make it” shoud be a choice, not an inevitability.

PPRG: We couldn’t agree more. We also have a deep love for Philly and its future. Speaking of which, what’s up next for you?

Chill Moody: Amplifying what I’ve already done. There’s still so much work to do. I’m spreading the message to let people know about my mission in hopes that they will join the fight. New music is on the way. Expect bigger moves with my craft beer, tours, and just a lot of nicethings coming up. I’m looking forward to representing the city of Philadelphia around the world.

Music makes the world go round and thanks to Chill, he’s committed to creating harmony in more than just one way for the City of Brotherly Love. For updates on music, Philly and more, follow Chill on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

 

*Chill Moody is a client of Philly PR Girl.

1 Comment
  1. I love how Chill represents our city. His brand and his passion is the very spirit of Philly through and through… That’s nicethings