Melissa Jefferson, AKA ‘LIZZO’, is a fierce alternative rap female pop artist at the height of her career. Lizzo got her nickname from friends who she spent her youth rapping with, in Houston, Texas. It was in Houston that Lizzo developed her musical identity: along with rapping, she pursued classical flute, and drew inspiration from girl groups like The Spice Girls and Destiny’s Child. Though she went to college with the intention of becoming a professional flute player, she ended up turning her efforts towards pursuing a career in vocal performance. She embarked on a string of stints in various groups - rap duos, trios, rock bands, electro-pop, indie - until finally landing in Minneapolis, when she started to blow up. She was noticed by a local radio station that helped get her on air for the first time, and was invited to perform at SXSW in 2013 with her then-girl-group,The Chalice.While developing as an artist, she drew a lot of inspiration from artists like Missy Elliott, Lauryn Hill, and Beyonce (post-DC) because they were strong black women who broke down barriers and established a new status quo.
The course of Lizzo’s career changed when Lizzo’s first publicist brought her a stack of Doomtree records. After years spent working on indie and alt projects, she started rapping again - this time, over a beat tape called “Lava Bangers”, which eventually became her first solo project,“Lizzo Bangers”.That mixtape would propel her to stardom and soon she was touring and singing backup for Har Mar Superstar, and landed a spot on Letterman in his final season.
From there, Lizzo was legitimized as a solo artist; she continued to tour and started writing Big Grrrl Small World, her second solo project. Since then she has performed at Bonnaroo, SXSW (solo), Glastonbury, Wireless Festival, and Austin City Limits; has opened for Chance the Rapper; has sold out First Avenue in Minneapolis; and even played Paisley Park several times at the request of Prince himself. She is featured in Prince’s backing band, 3rdeyegirl, on his 36th studio album, Spectrumelectrum.
At just 24 years old, Matt FX is a well known fixture in his community as a DJ, record producer, and probably best of all as the man behind the music of Comedy Central's Broad City. At Broad City, Matt has been able to use his platform as a way of elevating unsigned and up-and-coming artists; in 3 seasons of the show he has used over 600 tracks by emerging bands, producers, and vocalists from all around the country, and world! It has been said that he is the true definition of slang term 'the plug' and he's also been credited as 'the influencer to influencers.’ Matt joined the cast of Wonderland this fall, the live-with-live-music flagship show of MTV's largest rebrand in 20 years, as the show's resident music guru.
Myke Wright is a fiery stand up comedian from Detroit on the come-up in the LA comedy scene, but his talents stretch far beyond comedy. Myke is also an artist, a painter, a rapper, a rocker, and an avid consumer of all things music. He is the life of the party, the center of attention, and the ringleader of his crew. Growing up, he learned a lot about music from his parents - classic rock, classical, and jazz were major influences early on. He used to rap battle other kids at lunch for their snack packs, and steal his brothers’ hip hop mixtapes to trade with his friends. Myke started playing guitar in high school, and joined several rock bands, switching to play bass along the way. Myke moved on from his rock band phase to form a rap group in Detroit called “Fresh Air”, which recorded two mixtapes and gained a solid fanbase. Myke used the moments in between songs to chat with the crowd and crack jokes, laying the seeds for his eventual move into solo stand-up comedy.
When he isn’t performing, Myke frequently attends indie shows at dive bars in Echo Park and Downtown LA - at least three nights a week. He likes listening to what nobody else is listening to, and discovers a lot of music by dropping by venues at random to see who’s playing. The Echoplex and The Virgil are two of his favorite spots to catch new acts. Myke also loves travelling, visiting new places, meeting people, reading, learning about art and history, and exploring new cultures. He is a self-proclaimed music snob, and considers himself a music connoisseur.That being said, he also claims that he can find at least a few songs he likes from any artist - he can appreciate all genres, styles, and arrangements. (Best show he’s been to is Beyonce’s “Lemonade” Tour)!
Currently, Myke’s favorite genre is Vapor Wave, a heavily synthesized lo-fi trip-hop sound that features sampling, looping, glitching, pitch bending, and reverb. The net result is a chilled out sound with an punchy undercurrent - artists like Phantogram, Dam Funk, and Saint Pepsi fall into this category. Myke is also into Toro Y Moi, Skizzy Mars, and Kali Uchis. He is constantly discovering new artists, listening to new sounds, and reading up on new music trends in industry mags like Rolling Stone, Entertainment Weekly, and Billboard.
When asked why he thinks MTV chose him? “It don’t take a whole day to recognize sunshine."￼
Rachael Finley, otherwise known as STEAK, is an LA-based underground culture vulture whose fingers are constantly on the pulse of what’s happening NOW. She grew up in South Florida on a diet of OG internet, pop-punk, and skater style. Her nickname draws from the large amount of steak she often had in her fridge and grilled for the whole neighborhood. She graduated from high school at age 16 and has been involved with music ever since. She toured with various metal bands throughout the rest of her teenage years, selling merch and living in the tour vans and on couches. She then moved to Los Angeles to work for a record label. Since then, she has found her niche in fashion, preparing to open “The Shop” in the sprawling Fairfax spillover featuring her “two clothing brands and a random assortment of trash.”Big vintage skate tees, shiny tights, and colored hair is her iconic look. Her social media game is on point, writing mostly pro-femme articles, and posting fashionable snapshots amassing over 120,000 followers on Instagram and Twitter combined. Steak has recently done a lot of correspondent work with VICE, and is in talks to be a contributor on a weekly podcast called That’s Tite which she will also run out of The Shop. Her celebrity network is massive; some of her closest friends are musicians from the Odd Future crew, Best Coast, and most notably Lee from Trash Talk. She is also heavily plugged into the television world, as her husband Blake Anderson is on the Comedy Central show “Workaholics”. Together, they own and operate their own clothing brand, Teenage, and she is now breaking into women’s clothing with her Girls line, with her business partner is proskater Erik Ellington. Her fans are typically young, internet-cultured, and ambitious - a demographic she refers to as “Rookie Magazine Fans”.Steak has a very unique taste in music - she listens primarily to underground rap, as it comes not from a “rich” point of view, but from a “getting there” point of view that she closely identifies with. She is an avid Internet & social media user, and discovers new music through aggregated platforms like Soundcloud and Tumblr. Her strongest suit is making uniqueness accessible; her fan base is made up of people who come from small beginnings and work hard to be successful. When asked to describe herself in 5 words? Work hard. Play hard. Kale.￼