You ever come into contact with a group of people and you just kinda…well, “dig ’em” straight away? Yeah, well that’s what happened when jet-setting-wine-whisky-and-ready Freddie Baez dropped by my pad with Eva, Sofia and Danielle of Verluxe.

I think I just respond to where they are as emerging artists; as they remind me of similar moments in my own creative and professional journey. Creativity is just extra special when it’s raw, uninhibited and authentic, which is what I love about Verluxe.

I know what it means to be an innovative young Chicagoan, as I left my own indelible impression on the world from the streets of Chicago in the 1990s.  From Wicker to Rogers Park from Cal City to The Heights and the west side to the wild hundreds.  The Verluxe ladies are out there doing them…and it’s all jammed into this mag to see.  It’s basically like a big Verluxe brochure, LOL!   I love the double page spread of chicago rappers shooting music videos in front of Harold’s Chicken. There’s a sort-of old-school, or better yet, true-school feel to the imagery in this zine.   It’s refreshing to see Chicago portrayed in this light versus what had seemingly become the norm during the Chief Keef age; which I do hope has run it’s course.

These dope little “slice-o-life-collages” in the Photo Diary section, are great little pieces of where the VRLX crew has been, the paths they’ve crossed and the dots they’ve connected along the way (yes, I peeped the sliver from my back patio…word ladies!).  But yo, the real word that I gotta use when I talk about VRLX magazine is: REFRESHING. Refreshing and diverse; and oh how diverse it is.  Black, white, gay, weird, alien, hip, geek, skinny, sexy and artsy-fartsy.  Chicago is such a unique city, with it’s own vernacular, swagger, history and style; and VRLX mag is all up in it!

The articles are on interesting people and just brief enough to still be insightful.

The writing, styling and imaging is constantly evolving yet stays true to itself; and there’s no fluff or gratuitous bullshit to be found in any corner.  Hell, even Paris Hilton is quoted in an editorial piece, and it’s intelligent!  Shit ladies, mad respect!  Mad love to mi hermano boric Freddie Baez, I need to get my fam Yung Swerv Divine in front of a Verluxe camera as soon as is humanly possible!  Keep blazing your own path ladies.  Chicago loves you for it.

You’re welcomed.