26 Feb 2021

Arts & Entertainment:

Teddy Beats and the Chill (dance) we need

Even though our focus here at The Hill is Home is, well, the Hill, we are passionate about all things DC. When I first listened to DC native Teddy Beats’ “Hold Me”– a song with over 5 million Spotify plays), it made me happy. Its sunny, upbeat rhythm makes you want to shouder-dance– you know, that shimmy you do when you listen to something fun? Yeah! Make sure you also take a listen to Teddy’s newest, “Wanna Go.” (If you’re on Spotify, click here to listen and follow.)

Teddy Beats. Portrait by Bobby Bandz

I recently connected with Teddy and his new wife and now manager, Mandy Kimlick, via email and asked them a few questions. I hope you enjoy their answers and check out more of his music. One day, we’ll be able to listen live– maybe at Echostage?
(Answers have been lightly edited for clarity.)

1. What defines the chill dance genre?

Chill dance is the fusion of pop and EDM, so it’s chilled-out dance music. If you go to music festivals like Ultra, Tomorrowloand or Coachella and come home and listen to the top 40 on the radio, you’ll like my music. I lean into the poppier side of EDM, while adding a chill, moody vibe.

2. What are some of the things you like best about the DC music scene? Favorite venues?

DC has a really rich and diverse music scene, which is awesome because you can always find new inspiration and sounds. It’s also home to some great venues. Unfortunately the pandemic has closed many staples (such as U Street Music), but we still have some great ones. Every year, the dance industry votes on the top venues in the world, and Echostage consistently lands in the top three. I’m not sure people realize we have a top venue in our backyard. My personal favorite is Soundcheck. Not only have I played there the most, but they have the best air conditioning in the game behind the booth! 

3. How has the pandemic changed the local music scene?

The pandemic has drastically changed the local music scene. Live shows and performances are non-existent. If you were a gigging musician or worked at a venue in any capacity, the pandemic has highly altered your everyday life and work. We were in the middle of a college tour, so had to stop. Thankfully, being a producer, as well as a DJ, has had benefits. During the pandemic, music consumption was at an all time high, so more people were streaming music and discovering artists. The best way to support your favorite artists are to follow them on social media and streaming platforms. That “follow” button on Spotify can make a huge difference for artists and how their music is shared in the platforms algorithm. (Hint, hint!)

Teddy and wife Mandy Kimlick on their wedding day. Photo by Bobby Bandz

4. This one is for you and your wife and manager, Mandy: What is it like to work with your significant other? Are there any tips or tricks to loving each other even when there are deadlines or you need to get things done in a certain way?

Teddy: Creativity is a fragile thing, and being in the music industry you’re subject to a lot of scrutiny and rejection. It can be crushing. Mandy and I have a strong emotional intelligence about each other, which helps cushion the blows, support the in-betweens and celebrate the success. 

Mandy: I absolutely love working with Teddy. I also love just hanging out with him and being around him, in general. We are very lucky in that sense. I think one of the reasons we work so well together is we both value creativity. It’s what our lives are based off of, so we really honor and celebrate it in our house. That means we respect each other’s work schedules, opinions and approach each other with care. I’ve also learned to preface certain topics with “This is coming from your manager”.

Happy belated Valentine’s day to you both!

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