Norwegian born self taught artist Lido is one to see. His performance at this year's 2016 Coachella Valley Music Festival not only set a record, it spoke to his natural ability to deliver groundbreaking music both on and off stage. Debuting his upcoming album was not only a unheard of undertaking, it was a risk that externally conveyed Lido's ability to push the envelope and take music-craved ears to another level. I had the opportunity to catch up with him in his trailer to talk, R&B, 90's babies and why he's truly an underrated genius.
M: How do you find the balance being self taught yet now you have the people and tools around you to maximize your work?
L: Well the cool thing about that is growing up in a place where no one was really able to help me with anything was that, I had to figure out my own ways of doing things. So now, I meet people who are amazing at production, or amazing at drums or amazing at piano and amazing vocalist. I am like cool, I do that completely differently than you, I have a completely different approach to it. I wouldn't have that if I grew up around people telling me how to do things. So that automatically gives you a signature, something different. You kinda have to just figure out, how to do everything yourself. I definitely wish I was around people who could push me and make me even better when I was younger but at the same time, I think it gave me something really special to not know how to fucking do everything.
M: Seeing that you've been the one doing everything yourself, and now you have the people, is it harder or easier to let go of that control?
L: Oh, it's impossible!
M: OK! So...Thank you, I do everything myself and I can feel that struggle when I have more of a time at times. And, I have often asked myself am I controlling person but its like I am use to doing it.
L: That's because we care. When I was a kid I didn't know that it was possible to have a team. I was like alright, I'm sure every rapper makes all their own beats right?! I'm sure like they record themselves and have to learn how to play the piano and the drums.
M: Yeah--they run from mic to mic themselves.
L: Exactly, like thats got to be normal--right, thats what everybody does. You just don't know. It's been definitely finding that balance. I have the greatest team in the world. I'm so fortunate to be around the people that I am around. We are all on the same page and its all about the vision, very much about completing my vision which is incredible.
M: I am going to go ahead and give you the title underrated genius. Really, I was watching the I love you video with Kork video and there was an Orchestra.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CmZGFmHEbq0
You were on the piano then you jumped to the electric piano. Then after reading you taught yourself, I was like wow! Underrated Genius. Not that I am saying you are going to give Kanye a run for his money although, you are totally underrated. Do you feel that? As I am saying that what comes to your mind?
L: Thank you so much, first thing is that yea, I don't really know how to live up to a title like that at all. If I can really do that. For me, Im such a music person. In the sense that as much as the music is me and I very much am music. I'm not really anything else than music. That's it, if I wasn't doing music then I have no idea what the fuck I would be doing-- that very much is me. At the same time, I have such a big love for my music and for the things that I produce that there almost becomes a little bit of a distance there where it is not about me. I am out of the equation. It is about the product, so if I have a song idea, if I have a vision for a song and I cant do it. Then I will orchestrate some other way to make that happen because its not about me. It's not about me having whatever talents or having whatever skills. It is about me having ideas. I feel like, I owe it to my ideas to make it happen. I get to hear these really cool songs in my head I get to hear these fantastic thins that happen inside my head. I owe it to those things to give it life--somehow. So whenever people compliment me on things that have to do with me or have to do with my music I am so grateful for that. Not as like an ego trip that doesn't make me cool. That just makes me happy for my music-- you know what Im saying. Its always weird to me to get compliments like that or to get titles put on me like that. I'm like alright thats great but I'm not the important one. This stuff is the important stuff. Its a mixture between being really happy for that stuff and being kind of confused that I am apart of it.
M: I totally get the dichotomy. Speaking of important stuff, your performance at Coachella you debuted your album which is something that is very rarely done in a Coachella setting. When did you decide that, thats the move you are going to make?
L: Maybe about a month ago.
M: When you walked away from you performance what is the feeling you had?
L: To be completely honest with you, I was empty. I took two years of emotions and put it into 45 minutes. I was done, I was empty. I hugged everybody at my team and disappeared. I shut my phone off and disappeared. I was just empty. Im still catching up. I still haven't really figured out what I am feeling yet. That was such a powerful moment to me and so many complicated emotions put into a short time span. I don't really know yet. It was powerful and it was incredible, everything went exactly how I wanted it to go.
M: Well, you're powerful and incredible so I am humbled by this moment, and when the album is released, I cant wait for another chance to dive in. This is just the appetizer of whats to come.
L: Thank you, so much. I really appreciate that. I would love to have a very deep conversation about this album.
M: I am the girl to do that!
L: Lets do it. It's an incredibly complicated album. The reason, I decided to play the entire album is because its a concept album. We started out being like alright lets play this song and this song from the album and it just felt so weird. There is a story from the first song to the last song and interrupting that story just felt wrong. So we played it in order of the album. It was necessary for me to tell the story in its entirety. So, yea! Lets have a real conversation about this album!
M: You are a 90's baby and I am a 80's baby yet you are heavily inspired by R&B and videos like I need a girl. You were born in R&B yet you are making it a thing for you generation now. Why do you think it died off? Where did it go?
L: I have no idea. I think music always just comes in waves. Its almost like a mathematical system. I think R&B had a beautiful moment in the 90s when it was very pure and very genuine. But also yo, like if you listen to the radio right now-- its so much R&B. It is a different type of R&B. But thats the same thing you can say about Hip-Hop. Hip-Hop because almost a way of doing popular music. You started crossing it over with so many things, that it became apart of pop culture. That's sort of whats happening to R&B now where it is being implemented in alternative pop & in pop and hip-hop. It is fusing together with a lot of things and R&B was a very pure thing up until the mid 2000's. Now people are like now so we know--- trap music is basically pop music now. Like, Katy Perry is doing trap music. Now you have artists like Chris Brown and Tinashe and Bryson who are including R&B and pop music even to like Arianna Grande that are very much R& B but still pop. That hasn't really happened before. I am excited for R&B in terms of it getting the shine that it deserves. Even though its in a state right now where we are still figuring it out. Hip-Hop was in a weird place for a second too.
M: Oh, yea. just recently. Kind of a few years ago and its now finding its place.
L: Absolutely, now its finding its way. So R&B is going to have that for a minute. I am super stoked for it to find its place.
M: I think you will be sphere heading that.
L: I would love to be that and I do think I was one of the first ones that sort of embraced R&B and Gospel music into the electronic scene. That was something that didn't exist
M: Thats a very cool merger.
L: Absolutely, and a very natural merger now. Yet was something that was very unheard of just a couple of years ago. In general my big mission is to push what people consider possible within genre's I want to take pop music and say you know what we can include like samba rhythms in this. We can take techno music and we can put like asian scales in this. We can broaden theses genres and hopefully at one point break the genres and have them disappear and just be good music at some-point. Thats what I really hope to do and thats sort of what I try to do with electronic music infusing gospel progressions and R&B melodies and samples of stuff into it. I took like jazz fusion rhythms and put it into electronic music where electronic music was such a square thing. It was so square, it was so four-four. I took that and I tried to give it life and I tried to give it something unpredictable. Electronic in its roots, it was mind blowing sonically but it was incredibly predictable rhythmically. Now I am trying to flip that a little on its head.
M: This was great, thank you so much!
L: Thank you so much