As one of Dallas’ most vibrant and eccentric music acts, hip-hop duo Fagedelics is quickly taking the city by storm. They have performed sets at The Prophet Bar and have opened for the likes of Tay Money, Dorian Electra and Cupcakke. The group also performed at this year’s Pride Festival in Fair Park. Fagedelics, which is composed of Davida and Yhen, are on hiatus after Davida injured his ankle during a performance, but they have no plans to give up on shining a light on queer art.
The performers first met five years ago when Yhen’s boyfriend introduced them at Havana Lounge.
“We both did music individually,” Yhen recalls, “but when we met, we figured, hey, we should do a song together.”
The pair eventually cut two tracks together, in what was initially planned to be a collaboration. However, the two felt that they worked together so well that they ultimately decided to continue to pursue music as a duo. They realized that although their styles were different, they meshed well together.
“My sound is very bubblegum rap,” Davida says. “It’s like, ‘Look at me, I’m that bitch.’ Yhen’s is very opposite, but I like that our energies complement each other’s.”
“You don’t have to look a certain way to fit in with the LGBTQ+ community,” Yhen adds. “There’s feminine, there’s masculine, whatever. It doesn’t matter. But he gives more the fierce vibe, and I give the more hardcore vibe.”
“You can listen to my verse and be like, ‘Yas bitch’ and you can listen to his verse and be like ‘Fuck yeah, man,’” Davida says.
The pair doesn’t have plans for a full-length album or an EP in the near future. Rather, they plan to release a series of singles throughout the year, as Davida recovers from his injury. This approach will allow them to focus on each individual track as they build their fan base.
While Fagedelics has built a strong following, the pair believe that their craft can reach a larger audience.
“I kind of feel like we’re lacking,” Davida says. “I don’t see a lot of support for queer acts.”
“There’s a lot going on,” Yhen adds. “I don’t feel like there’s a spot for us quite yet. I think people are just scared to acknowledge openly gay artists.”
Yhen believes that the addition of a music venue in Dallas’ Cedar Springs neighborhood would help increase support of queer music acts in the area.
“We went out to LA, and they have so many queer shows over there,” Yhen says. “I feel like we need something like that over here.”
With rapper Lil Nas X's recent coming out, Fagedelics believe the “Old Town Road” artist will help increase LGBTQ+ visibility in pop and hip-hop.
“Him doing that was very brave,” Yhen says of the rapper. “Especially because he’s so mainstream and he’s got a No. 1 hit. I’m sure there were people behind the scenes telling him, ‘No, don’t do it, it’s going to ruin you,’ but I feel that it’s going to push him up.”
Although Dallas may seem shy to show support to ardently queer musicians, Fagedelics have no plans to tone their image down or to change their style to appeal to the mainstream. They live by a simple modus operandi: Do what you want, say what you want, wear what you want and don’t be scared.
“What I do with my hair, my shoes and my makeup, I love doing that,” Davida says. "I don’t just do it for attention, but to show the youth that they can express themselves. We want to be the sparks so that younger people can be the flame. When we make music, we do it for ourselves. The fact that people listen to us and like us means that we’re on the right track.”