Last Saturday, I spent my day in downtown Los Angeles attending the Skyline Music Festival in the newly renovated L.A. State Historic Park on what felt like the first day of summer. Skyline is hosted by Radiohill Events and L.A. radio station KCRW where Lido, Miike Snow, Duke Dumont and many more played.
This was an extra exciting festival to be heading to since I arranged a meet up with Lido, a music producer from Norway who is now based in Los Angeles.
Around 6pm, the hot Los Angeles sun finally starting going down as I headed to the backstage artist area to have a chat with Lido. We sat down and he immediately commented on the brightly colored pineapple socks I wore to the the festival. “I love your socks!” he said. “I literally just bought a huge plastic container of chopped pineapples. They’re so good.”
Then I handed him a vintage unopened pack of Pokemon cards and he responds, “Are you joking? This is like old school!” He goes to open his trailer to show his friends as they also freak out over the unopened pack of Pokemon cards. And then go on to repeat “Glass box, glass box my dawg, we gotta do an Instagram live after this!”
It had just been a few minutes of hanging out with Lido and I could tell he is a laid back guy–someone who genuinely loves making music and connecting with his fans. This is especially evidenced in the release of his debut album “Everything”, an extremely emotional body of work. The concept album is a break up album, with Lido expressing what it felt like processing his emotions after the break up.
Lido shared with us his thoughts about his album, his fans, his future, and why he doesn’t classify his music as EDM. Take a look at what he had to say.
How are you? How’s your new puppy?
I’m good. The dog is great, Oakley’s great. She’s the love of my life. She’s all I need. She’s at home right now, very happy. She’s old enough now, 9 months, where she’s well-behaved enough to let her have the whole house. She’s a blue nose pitbull and can jump like a mother fu****!
It’s been over a year since you debuted “Everything”. How does it feel going on stage and performing such deep and personal work?
Oh my god, it’s been a year since Coachella. It’s crazy. Coachella was so magical. But I’m not gonna lie, it was really difficult for a long time. Coachella was hard, it was the most anticlimactic moment that I think I’ve ever had. I played the album. I felt everything, like literally everything. No pun intended. And after, I was like…that was all my emotions. I felt like I was floating and empty, in a “I’ve-never-felt-this type of way before.” But I got used to it after a while. The first couple shows of tour, it was such a hard album to play, cause it’s so emotional. But I finally got to a point where these are songs.
I feel like you are incredibly nice to your fans, who have supported you through these emotional times.
My fans are incredible. I’m fortunate enough to have fans that are exactly like me. They’re all my homies. I think for a lot of people, the people you look up to are kinda like these stars, or very distant stars, that are, you know, showing you a lifestyle that you wish you had or are in places you wish you were, or whatever.
I’m just a kid making weird music that for some reason other kids [who are] like me like also! Whenever I play a show I feel like I’m just playing to a room of people that are so similar to me, who I can just hang out with and trust, because I’m playing such emotional and such personal music. I’m just playing to people who are on my wavelength, and I’m unbelievably fortunate to have the type of fans that I have. It is really rare.
I remember seeing you live and you opened your set with “this is not an EDM show.” I’ve always wanted to ask what exactly that means to you. Can you expand on the difference between an EDM show and a Lido show?
Absolutely. I think the main difference is I grew up going to jazz shows and to a lot of churches. When I was a kid I grew up with baptism gospel music, so these were all scenarios that were very [much] like when you’re in a jazz club you play whatever you want to play and you react however you want to react. And when you’re in church, no one knows where it’s gonna go. It might get crazy. It might get emotional. Grandma might do a back flip off the chair. You don’t know what people are gonna do, people are going to do whatever they feel like. I grew up with music in these scenarios, it was so free, so very free.
And a lot of EDM shows feel kind of strict, like when the build is going on – you’re collecting people’s attention. Everybody’s ready, and we’re ready, and, and… EVERYBODY DO THE SAME THING AT THE SAME TIME! And a lot of DJs sorta tell people what to do. Like “throw you’re hands in the air” or “everybody sit down,” “stand back up” and “everybody say this or say that.” And I want people to do whatever they feel when they listen to my music, cause my music isn’t really formatted like that.
If a song makes you feel like crying then you should do that. I try to sort of create this space of freedom where people can be whoever they are and feel whatever they feel. ‘Cause that’s the whole point of my music.
So what’s next for Lido? Is there new material in the works? Another album?
I’m just making music. It’s been an interesting year. I’ve had a lot of revelations. I’ve made a lot of music. I sorta got tired of vomiting music of my own. So I’ve been focusing more on executive production rather than just sending beats to rappers, ’cause that got kinda boring after awhile. So working with people on “what should your live show be like?”, “how should we reflect that in the record?”, “what should your track list be like?”, “who should mix it?” and also helping them write their songs and do production as well.
But I really love doing that, I really love disappearing into someone else’s mind. And for two weeks you are Chance the Rapper. And then snap out of it. And then for two weeks you are blues band from Detroit. And then for two weeks you are Alison Wonderland. And then two weeks you can be yourself, and try to do all these things you wish you could do in all these scenarios. So I love doing that, thinking “how can I help this person experiment and widen their musical world and at the same time be as much ‘them’ as possible?”
But yeah, I’m also writing my own album. Again, the whole Lido project is about experimentation. I’m trying to do a lot of that and make something completely different from last time. And yeah, just eating a lot of avocados, and a lot of pineapples.
Listen to Lido’s latest release Feel It Still – Lido Remix on Spotify.