Hiding from fans in a tent at Glastonbury with Radiohead and the Gorillaz, touring with Missy Elliot, collaborating with Ellie Goulding and Tinie Tempah and breaking a Guinness World Record – it is clear that hip hop duo Chiddy Bang
have had a busy journey.
The American artists, famous for their song Opposite of Adults which sampled MGMT’s Kids, were surprisingly humble as they recalled their rapid rise to fame.
“Each plateau is a challenge similar to a feudal analogy. It’s as though you are a peasant or a farmer pleasing a king in Medieval Europe,” said Noah Beresin.
“It’s those moments, the ‘oh my God, I’m here’,” he added. “It’s the first time faces know all the words to your song, the first time you’re recognised on the street or asked for an autograph and the first time you bring home a platinum to your mom.”
Chiddy Bang formed in 2008, when Chidera ‘Chiddy’ Anamege met Noah ‘Xaphoon Jones’ Beresin at Drexel University in Philadelphia. They collaborated and debuted their first free mix tape, The Swelly Express, in 2009 which led to global success.
Chiddy describe their music as “hip hop with alternative rap and some electronic break-beats”.
After signing to major label, EMI/Parlophone Records, Chiddy Bang produced a follow-up mix tape, Air Swell, which included songs featuring mainstream UK artists.
Musical influences for the duo include Jay-Z’s Blueprint album, The Clash, The Roots’ Tipping Point album and Kanye West’s work as a producer.
Huge crowds at Glastonbury
While at Glastonbury Festival in 2010, the duo were forced to hide out in a tent with members of Radiohead and the Gorillaz to avoid the huge crowd of fans.
The hip hop artists have played at a range of venues across the world and recall one gig at “this broken down bar in Alabama” for just 15 people. However, their perseverance has gained them a huge following.
“The largest audience we’ve had was 14,000 people at the Theatre for the Living Arts in Philadelphia,” Chidera said. “But we take it as it comes. It’s just about harvesting the energy of the crowd.”
Their best experience was with Missy Elliott, Busy P, Jack Beats, AC Slater and Brodinsky in an Australian tour with the Parklife Festival.
Their success and popularity at Parklife allowed Chiddy Bang the chance to then participate in several other festivals, including Lollapalooza, Bamboozle, Bonnaroo and Wireless.
Last March at the MTV O Music Awards, Chidera stole the Guinness World Record for Longest Freestyle Rap from M-Eighty. Just a month later they won Best Music Video for their song, Opposite of Adults, at the MTVU Woodie Awards.
“It felt so great to be recognised,” said Noah. “I got a wild feeling and hearing the crowd’s reaction and acceptance, I mean…we were sitting in a room with Wiz Khalifa and Amber Rose and for fans to agree, it meant it was real.”
Chiddy consider the music industry to have been kind to them so far.
They have been provided with many opportunities to further themselves but realise it can all be taken away at any moment.
They have already released two singles from their upcoming album: Mind Your Manners and Ray Charles, which features a piano riff in the style of American blues musician, Ray Charles.
The new album, Breakfast, is released on February 28.