Current track



Pivot Gang Takes Over Vocalo’s Airwaves Before John Walt Day

Written by on December 2, 2022

West Side Chicago hip-hop collective Pivot Gang is a collection of childhood friends and family members. Three members of the collective, Joseph Chilliams, Frsh Waters and daedaePIVOT, stopped by the Vocalo studios last week — ahead of their fifth annual John Walt Day celebration concert — to sit down with mornings host Bekoe. The group discussed how the group formed: out of studio sessions and rock-solid friendships. 

From their first day making music together to now, West Side Chicago hip-hop collective Pivot Gang has continuously been raising the bar creatively. Founded in 2011, the group consists of Saba and his brother Joseph Chilliams, as well as MFnMelo, Frsh Waters, producer daedaePIVOT and producer and DJ Dam Dam.

RELATED: Saba Breaks Down ‘Few Good Things,’ Tour on Vocalo: “We’re Just Getting Started”

On Nov. 26, the group presented their annual live music event John Walt Day at the Metro in support of the nonprofit John Walt Foundation, which was founded in 2017 after the sudden passing of founding Pivot Gang member of John Walt, or Walter Long Jr. In honor of Walt, the foundation strives to support young Chicago artists who are in pursuit of spreading positivity through their music or artistic practices.

This year’s John Walt Day highlighted the both the legacy of John Walt and the late SqueakPIVOT, who passed suddenly in 2021. The group’s performances left the audience in awe — and featured surprise special guest appearances from other Chicago luminaries such as Chance the Rapper and femdot.

“Chicago, if you see John Walt Foundation out there, just know we here for y’all,” Frsh Waters explained.

daedaePIVOT, Joseph Chilliams, Bekoe and Frsh Waters at Vocalo Studios. Photo by Jayvon Ambrose for Vocalo

Before they hit the stage at their John Walt Day event Joseph Chilliams, Frsh Waters and daedaePIVOT stopped by the Vocalo studios to join mornings host Bekoe. They discussed the group’s founding and where the name “pivot” comes from, as well as their respective individual and group projects. They also reflected on the supportive dynamic of the collective and what listeners can expect to hear from them in the future.

Follow Pivot Gang on Instagram and Twitter, and stream their music on Spotify below.

Interview, video and audio editing by Bekoe

Photography and video footage by Jayvon Ambrose

Introduction written by Morgan Ciocca and Joshua X. Miller

More from Vocalo: