It’s a party that everyone wants to be a part of. In a secret location of Chicago early 2023, Elevator Music was born. When videos of local DJs playing in elevators started popping up in our social media feeds, the word caught on quickly. In its early inception you could score yourself an invite to a private live taping which had a party both inside and outside of the elevator.

Elevator Music acts have run the gamut from local Chicago House stars and up-and-coming DJs to live acts. It’s a dynamic lineup hitting diverse musical genres, constantly evolving as the production team discovers ways to stretch their creative muscles while growing their audience base.

Made up of a team of long term collaborators with years of experience in music, film, commercial production, community programming and event planning, the Elevator Music team decided they wanted to share their art with the world. While much of the behind the scenes work is still very much private, they’ve shared with 5 Mag some of the machinations that go on behind such a comprehensive labor of love.

—Elevator music is about year old now? You’ve made quite an impact in that short time!

We just turned one this May! We are really excited and grateful to see the love and positive response we’ve received this last year from both audience and artists.

—When I last saw you guys in person, I remember you saying you wanted to expand to live music as well as do different genres outside of electronic dance music…

We are all music lovers, and our tastes cover a wide array of genres. We want to create a space that welcomes all artists and styles to play their music in the elevator. One thing we love about our name and concept is that it’s simple enough to allow us to explore any genre, any elevator, at any time.

— Can you tell us who are the cast members of the Elevator crew?

We are a mighty team of long term collaborators with years of experience enabling diverse backgrounds in music, film, commercial production, community programs and events to share their art with the world.

—In the beginning you first threw parties to go with each of the tapings, those were so much fun! Did they get out of control?

Lately, we’ve decided to focus on the production process rather than the party. Some artists we book are only in town for a few hours, so it can be tough to arrange a party around talent schedules when we only have them for two or three hours in the morning before their show. However, we absolutely love the party-forward shoots and are still implementing them into our monthly schedule, where we focus our attention on creating an intimate and safe environment for both fans and artists. The parties are always attended by great people, and we love connecting fans with artists in a live setting. Also, we’ll be launching a subscription model soon for our fans, where we’ll release premium content, track IDs, and other Elevator Music goodies.


5 Mag Issue 214
Out May 2024

LIVE ALIVE: This was originally published in 5 Mag Issue #214 featuring Seven Davis, Jr, Nick V and the long-running Paris residency La Mona, Chicago’s viral Elevator Music, DJ Rush and more. Become a member for $2/month and get every issue in your inbox right away!


— How much prep time do you need for every show from booking the talent to the actual day of? And what’s the time frame of your episode release?

We love to book talent months in advance, but there are some bookings that happen the week-of. It really depends on the talent, creative concepts, and general timing. For example, DJ sets generally take far less time and preparation than a full live band, but each project varies. We publish episodes bi-weekly and like to work with artists and their teams to coordinate on any marketing goals they may have surrounding album releases, touring, etc.

—What are some of your criteria for choosing the talent that you do? I know anonymity amongst the crew had to happen because otherwise everyone would be blowing you up!

We receive an overwhelming number of inquiries each day and do our best to work with as many new artists as we can.

We try to have a mixture of great up-and-coming artists as well as more established artists we love. We feel it’s important as a platform to feel approachable and welcoming.

—What have been some of the challenges that you faced?

Our goal has always been to connect audiences with artists, it’s why we created Elevator Music. Our only real challenge so far has been getting our videos in front of as many fans who will appreciate the music as possible. But as we’ve grown, we’ve seen that consistency, quality, and curation have been the things our audience value most, so our mindset is all about keeping the work rolling, always searching for new artists, new styles, new levels, new musical flavors, to keep bringing new music and artistry to our audience.

— I read that you guys may be interested in expanding to doing Elevator Music in other cities with their elevators, what a cool concept! Is that happening any time soon?

We are currently making plans to expand! We have always said Elevator Music is not limited to just one elevator or one style of music. We have some exciting productions in the works that would take us to different states and countries this year. There are elevators everywhere, and our long-term goal is to be active in every corner of the world, with as wide a range of artists as possible.

—In terms of future endeavors, how long would you like to see Elevator Music go for and do you see it turning into something else? Maybe a stage at a festival?

We have often been asked if we plan to create a label, music festival, blog, and so on.

Nothing is out of the question. We would absolutely love to host a stage or activation at a festival! We have been talking about that a lot recently and have opportunities like that on our radar. With time and dedication, we see Elevator Music developing in a number of ways, but for now, we want to continue to build our platform and work with amazing artists.

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— What are some future events we can look forward to?

Until we announce, we like to keep future events under wraps. Elevator Music has been working with some incredible artists, and we like to keep the element of surprise when it comes to what’s coming soon. But, there will be a lot to look forward to in the near future with the platform itself. With the subscription model, new series, and a fantastic lineup of artists coming soon, we see good things on the horizon for Elevator Music. As we like to say, “Going up!”

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