Dez Lacuda

Dez Lacuda

Musical Artist

July 30, 2019


Tell us more about some of your past projects?

I most recently filmed a music video in the Toledo Museum of Art for my new single “Cheeba”. I wanted to show how my generation in the hip hop culture would explore the fine art world. We chose exhibits by Rebecca Louise Law and Joseph Kosuth to create a contrast of themes and visuals that would complement the song. Designer Alexander Hall helped bring the vision to life and we are ecstatic about the responses.

I also helped co-create the Rust Belt Diaries video series where we highlight the many forms of talent here in northwest Ohio. We’ve been honored to have conversations with the likes of DJ One Tyme, installation artist Jason Karas who helped contribute the Promedica lights in downtown Toledo, Peapod from OntheRadarPodcast, and more.

What current projects are you working on?

I am currently working on some new Dez Lacuda video content for the “Cheeba” single. The shoots for that have been a lot of fun. Along with more music, our stage performances are developing for the road ahead.

What advantages does being in Northwest Ohio/Toledo offer your efforts?

We are so close to other major cities like Detroit, Columbus, and Ann Arbor. You can build new relationships, create business, and reach new fans in new, but familiar places.

Tell us about one of your greatest successes.

Having the Toledo Museum of Art acknowledge our work was a surprising moment for us. I’m aware that a select few get to film in there. For them to invite us back to shoot again is even cooler. Thank you to Toledo City Councilmen Nick Komives, Toledo City Paper, and the city as a whole for the support and recognition.

Tell us who or what gives you inspiration?

Learning new things and experiences tremendously helps me. Inspiration can come from an undiscovered sound of music, a beat pack with “that one” sample I must have, or while traveling. I get new ideas by being out of my comfort zone for sure.

Tell us about your background.

I’m a hip hop vocalist, beat producer, and film artist. I like to include parts of myself with relatable themes and representations of my birthplace Toledo, Ohio.

Do you have a motto or favorite quote you try to live by?

“We have two lives, and the second begins when we realize we only have one.” -Confucius

Favorite place for local culture?

Being in downtown Toledo during the summer is where it’s at. You can go to the ball park to watch the Mud Hens, or catch a hip hop show at Frankies or the Ottawa Tavern. Plenty of events as well.

Toledo’s “best kept secret” is . . .

The Cheeba Man…

My favorite place to chill locally is . . . 

Balance pan Asian Grille! The wiseman bowl is ordered at least once a week.

My favorite natural space in the Toledo area is . . . 

I enjoy being by the water in general. The river downtown is always nice, but driving at dawn or dusk with the wind and your music is unbeatable.

When I’m not working hard, I can always be found at . . . 

The studio or the internet.

If you could change anything about the current landscape for creative, progressive people . . .

Building the infrastructure for midwest entertainment & arts overall. I believe it could breed more culture and bring new people and business here.

Any exciting collaborations (past or present) you would like to tell us about?

There are a few local artists I want to do songs with. Maybe a collaborative project? We’ll see.

Name one person (living or deceased) who you would love to collaborate with.

Collaborating with Cole Bennett on a music video would be amazing. I learn from his direction and art style.

Name a CD, book or website you can’t live without.

I can’t live without Dale Carnegies book “How to win friends and influence people”. It’s the most impactful piece of literature I know of right now. That and YouTube is a must have.

3 words that best describe me or my work are . . .

Challenge Everyday Perception

Give us 5 Desert Island Album picks.

Tame Impala - Lonerism
Kanye West - My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
Jay-Z - Reasonble Doubt
Bob Marley - Legend
Nirvana - Nevermind

My biggest vice is . . .

Definitely Sugar and the Cheeba

I’d like to see __________ in Toledo.

A renaissance with bigger and better business. That is the only thing that will keep us from jokes by the likes of Trevor Noah, Time magazine, even us.

What’s the last dream you recall having?

I went sky diving with Snoop Dogg, but halfway down we ended up just flying around instead.

The last lyric that moved me was . . .

“I’d rather die enormous then live dormant, that’s how we on it.” - Jay-Z

One movie character I identify with is . . .

I’d say I’m a mix of Tony Stark and Dr Strange. I want to master the technology of our time being assertive and sure, but other times I’m quiet and observant, yearning to learn about myself and what is not easily seen or understood.

The best gift I’ve ever received was . . .

Music equipment and someone’s time.

My most inspiring moment was/is . . .

I had a conversation with rapper Logic. I was working retail at the time, and for an artist of his stature to take a moment to speak with me was inspiring to say the least. The advice he gave me was invaluable and fueled the fire even more.

I want my last meal to be _______________.

A nice steak or pizza dinner. With some ice cream, and a root beer.

Find Dez on YouTube

Photo Credit: Jake Venter of Venter Visuals


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