Blaqrock blurs genre lines with new album ‘No Love for Blaqkid’


Courtesy Maddy Harlow

Blaqrock will play music from their debut album, No Love For Blaqkid, for the first time Sept. 14 at the Cubby Bear, 1059 W. Addison St. 

By Kaci Watt

What started with one student’s vision resulted not only in a band, but in an album. Blaqrock, a Chicago-based rock rap group formed in 2015, consists of current and former Columbia students.  Their debut album, No Love For Blaqkid, is available now on Spotify, iTunes and YouTube. 

The Chronicle spoke to vocalist Gardner McFadden and guitarist Myles Bacon about the band’s Sept. 14 show at the Cubby Bear, located at 1059 W. Addison St., and their plans for new music.

THE CHRONICLE: How did the band start?

MCFADDEN: It started with me. I wanted to be in a band because I like music and I like rapping. I wanted to express myself in a way other than film, because it was a hard medium. I contacted a lot of people who were in the Music Department,  and asked people to jam. Over time, some people left and some people stayed, and from there on I found out who wanted to be in [the band]. 

What other bands or artists inspire your overall sound?

BACON: We all brought individual influences from everywhere. We didn’t all come together and decide on one band to emulate. I’m a huge Guns N’ Roses fan and our bassist and drummer are into progressive rock, so we all come from different places with the music.

How would you describe the band’s songwriting process?

MCFADDEN: If I feel some type of way about something, I write it down. If I listen to a song and like a melody or a riff in it, I keep that in mind. Then I record myself making those sounds and  think about how the drums would sound in it and how the guitar would sound. Or sometimes Bacon will play something and we’ll go off of each other and make something up on the spot.

What do you have planned for your September show?

BACON: It’s our last show with our current bass player, so we’re expecting a really big turn out. It is our first time playing the Cubby Bear, so we’re excited to be there.

What are your goals for the band?

BACON: For us to keep getting recognized throughout the city of Chicago. Then hopefully branch out from the city and  keep growing throughout the Midwest, and  the country as time goes on.

MCFADDEN: To make sounds and music that I wish I could’ve made when I was younger or could have listened to when I was younger. There are songs that I wish were made and I want to make them.