This week, DeBraun Thomas talks with an artist who’s nostalgic for a long-retired audio format – but it’s not the one you’re probably imagining.
Carlos Villanueva is a hip-hop artist originally from Miami and has been an integral part of Lexington’s hip-hop scene for the last decade.
He started out rapping, but in more recent years has taken on a different role as a producer. Villanueva performs under the stage name Lo Fidel and is known for his analog approach to making instrumentals. Villanueva says his music is inspired by his actual life events and sometimes he takes liberties to make the music more dramatic.
“I like to like, be over exaggerating when I make stuff like that, you might hear two people fighting and throwing flower vases at each other and stuff like that so obviously I didn’t do that, but I just find it really funny to stretch the truth sometimes and when I make albums like that the end result always comes out really cool,” he says.
Villanueva’s style has led to collaborations with many different artists from places as close as Louisville, and as far away as New Zealand.
He strives to keep his music as close to analog as possible and even releases his music on cassette tapes. He’s released 3 different cassettes most recently a collaboration album with Dr. Dundiff. Villanueva believes that CDs are a way of the past and with digital downloading being as popular as it is, he says the cassette is different and starting to make a comeback.
“The format has definitely given me a boost, but I mean as in any niche you gotta kinda go along with what you’re doin, I mean, that’s why I go by Lo Fidel is cause I really like the lo fi, warm analog, and when I do stuff like that, I would like for it to remain that way, I could give you a CD with a bunch of tape hiss on it, but it’s like, why would I do that when I can put it right back on a cassette and give it to you the way I heard it?” he asks.
More information about Villanueva can be found at LoFidel.com.