Terry Tertiary is no stranger to the Chicago independent music scene. As one of the hosts of Wardens MidWest, a radio show on UIC Radio, he regularly discovers and highlights budding Chicago musicians in addition to creating his own music with 0cto5quid under the same name.
Using his immense knowledge of the Chicago music scene, he worked with other community organizations to create E.A.T. Fest, which stands for Evolve And Thrive Music Festival. I spoke with Terry to learn more about his inspiration and plans for this weekend’s festival.
What inspired you to create E.A.T. Fest and what was that process like?
We felt as if there are a lot of music festivals in the Chicago area and none attempt to showcase the unique diversity of the independent music scenes in such a way. E.A.T. Fest has revolutionized the fest scene in the sense that we’re trying to benefit artists and all other entities involved as much as possible to create a local platform controlled by artists, for artists that can have great potential for sustainability.
What organizations are also involved? What was that collaboration like?
All of the core organizations involved are Wardens MidWest, Activate-Chi, Latent Design, Eat Well, Ever Evolved, and Obsidian. The entire creation process of the event with them has been that of an epic journey. We treated each other like family before this, utilizing each other’s resources in the sense of a potluck. Which is where the idea of E.A.T. originates. What lies before us now serves as a great foundation for us to build on. Now it feels like legitimate business with a family. Other organizations that have sponsored E.A.T. Fest are Creative Cypher, amfm.life, Contexture.Tv, Walking Art Brand, EVOL Chicago, and many more in different behind the scenes capacities.
(Headliner Adam Ness)
How did you find the artists who are performing?
It was as a result of the resources of the core organizations involved, combined with local artists’ desires to see the capability of their unified power.
Can you speak about some of the artists performing? Who are the headliners, what genres is the festival focusing on, etc.
The genres featured in the festival truly range beyond explanation due to such immense influences from the melting pot of Chicago, but for the sake of this interview I will try. Music ranges from R&B and Soul to EDM, Singer-songwriter, House, Hip Hop, Alternative Rock, Spoken Word Poetry, and many things I can’t predict because of the experimental period that much Pop music is in right now. Headliners are Adam Ness, Add-2, Phenom, Dometi, Pugs Atomz, Elevated, Ace Da Vinci, Chai Tulani, Joslyn-Marie, John The Author, theWHOevers, Huey Gang, Andesso, and many more.
How essential are communities such as this when performing/producing your own music?
The creative community I currently belong to is not only essential to my own creative process but to the independent musician community at large. It’s a network constantly, critiquing, building, expanding and sharing unselfishly for a simply defined reason. And that reason is better shown than told.
(Headliner Chai Tulani)
What other communities in Chicago helped develop E.A.T.?
All sides of Chicago have come together for this event. Many of the organizations involved are located or do a lot of community work on the South and West sides–much of Wicker Park has supported our festival. A lot of store owners in the Wicker Park area attended our event and hung our flyer in their windows. We have large support from the administration at Young Chicago Authors and a few other creative arts youth based organizations in Chicago.
What are your goals/dreams about the future of the festival?
Due to the immense success of the first E.A.T. Fest we are already planning another installment for the summer and we are going to make it bigger and better than the first. Still keeping local talent and organizations to build something even stronger and more sustainable!
By: Ashley Wolfgang
Edited and Updated By: Terry Tertiary