- Words Notion Staff
As she gears up to play Edinburgh's Terminal V festival in April, we spoke to Chippy Nonstop about bringing back Intersessions, fulfilling her own happiness and future music releases.
Is there anything that Chippy Nonstop can’t do? It’s a question that seems easy to answer at first but becomes incredibly difficult when you reel off just how much she’s achieved. However, the powerhouse producer, vocalist, rapper and DJ hasn’t had a straightforward journey. In 2015, she was deported from the United States following a visa issue. Unwilling to be deterred from the mission in hand, Chippy used the experience positively, manifesting Intersessions: a workshop series that puts a spotlight on gender disparity in electronic music.
An fearless ability to start conversation has made the multifaceted musician one of global club music’s most recognisable names. Playing anything over 150 BPM, the Toronto-based artist regularly tops bills alongside fellow electronic stalwarts like LSDXOXO, Haai and Mall Grab.
What trumps Chippy’s endless list of accolades is her determination to make the industry more accessible. Clubbing’s laddish culture is deteriorating by the day, and it’s thanks to artists like herself that change is being demanded. As she gears up to play Edinburgh’s Terminal V festival in April, we spoke to the electronic hitmaker about bringing back Intersessions, fulfilling her own happiness and future music releases.
Hi Chippy Nonstop, how’s it going? What’s life like for you at the moment?
Hi! I mean, there’s definitely been some ups and downs but I’m hanging in there.
We’ve got to kick off by talking about your new residency on Rinse FM, congratulations! In the first program, you cover a broad range of electronic music genres. Do you have any plans for future shows?
Thank you. I want to mostly showcase Toronto artists and the variety of different music in our scene, as well as how the diaspora informs dance music.
You also introduced listeners to a spectrum of Canadian producers. For those that don’t know, can you fill us in on the scene of your home? Who should your fans be excited to hear more from?
There’s so many amazing producers and artists out of Canada. I just curated our own Boiler Room for my party with Karim Olen Ash, called Pep Rally. The people who played were: Myst Milano, Syana, Redliners, Debby Friday, Karim Olen Ash, & Vadim Khan.
As for other artists, you should definitely check out: Nailbiter, Ana Luisa, Miaslav, bittercaress, mossy mugler, Minzi Roberta, HANGAËLLE, Chinelo, Angelphroot, Young Teesh & Nino Brown.
Over your music career, you’ve become a chameleonic figure, rapping, singing, producing and DJing simultaneously. First and foremost, what do you see yourself as?
I’m honestly just a creative person. I want to do what I like and not put the boundaries others do on me. My main goal is to make people happy and at the same time fulfill my own happiness.
A significant moment in your career was collaborating with Diplo and Major Lazer, but it was marred by the fact that they didn’t properly credit you on the track. Have you spoken since? And do you see this moment as indicative of wider issues in the electronic music and DJ community?
Yes, of course it is. As the final boss of music colonisation, Diplo’s ‘global music’ makes you forget where the actual music comes from and who the real creators are. The real creatives make pennies; it’s historical erasure happening right in front of our eyes. I wish that I was smart enough to have realised this when I was younger.
I saw a tweet towards the end of last year that praised your intersessions pop ups, saying how “pivotal” they were for a lot of DJs right now. Can you tell us about the motivations behind the workshops and reflect on the legacy they’ve built?
I brought them back this year actually, even though I’ve been insanely busy. The motivation was that DJing felt like a boys club. It started between multiple friends in Vancouver, and when I moved to Toronto, I did them there too. Now I run them across America & Europe. When I saw how many people in our community were grateful to learn and feel comfortable learning from someone who looked like them, I wanted to keep it going.
This April you’ll be coming over to Britain to play Terminal V – Scotland’s largest electronic music festival. What’s your relationship like with a Scottish crowd?
I’m not sure yet, we’ll see. I think generally they like me and they’re a fun crowd of good people! I’m excited about it.
Can you remember your first time coming over to the UK and playing a DJ set? Where was it and who were you playing with? Do you have any anecdotes from your time over here?
I honestly can’t remember. It was probably some random basement in Hackney circa 2014.
It’s nearly two years since you released your last project, which was a collaborative tape with fellow Canadian DJ genderfluid. Can we expect new music from you soon? If so, what sounds, and styles are you vibing with at the moment?
I’ve made a few tracks, which I want to put out soon: rave, 90s hardcore punk and acid have been the vibes.
What’s next for the relentlessly busy Chippy Nonstop?
Honestly, I’m currently doing more of the same: continuing the Intersessions workshops, creating spaces like Pep Rally where Black, Brown and Queer DJs can share their unique perspectives on dance music. Also, being better, healthier & happier for myself, making music & playing for the people.