Pret-a-Reporter

Lollapalooza: Jidenna Defines What It Means to Be a "Classic Man"

David Miller - Mad Lab Photography
Jidenna

During the Music Lounge's 10-year annivesary afterparty, the artist behind one of summer's catchiest tunes gave us his interpretation of what it takes to be a gentleman. Guys, listen up.

If you've caught yourself humming to the tune "Classic Man" all summer long, you can thank Jidenna Mobisson, better known as Jidenna, for that. Just one look at the performer and it's easy to see he practices what he preaches.

Clad in a cobalt blue bespoke suit, with the inside stitching reading, "Specifically Tailored for Jidenna," the performer shared that his father inspired him to be a true gentleman.

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"[He was] a very principled guy, he's an excellent dude. He dressed in three-pieces and walked with a cane himself," Jidenna told Pret-a-Reporter at the 10th anniversary of the Music Lounge, presented by Renaissance Hotels and powered by BMF Media Group and Billboard, on Friday night before hitting the stage at Renaissance Chicago Hotel's Member's Lounge. "He'd say, 'Always stick to your principles, always be excellent.' When I used to get a 98 percent on my test, he'd say, 'Where are the other two points?' Go back and bring them back to me."

That said, the 30-year-old musician embodies perfection, especially when it comes to his personal style.

SUITED UP: Jidenna performed at the Music Lounge afterparty on Friday.

"Most of the suits I try to wear are bespoke," said Jidenna, who works with Fear and Fancy, a production company and social club that helps bring his design ideas to life. He added, "I work predominantly with tailors from Nigeria, Ghana and Senegal." (Jidenna's name means "embracing the father" in the Igbo language spoken in Nigeria, where he grew up.)

With such fondness for bespoke suits, we could only imagine how many personalized pieces he must own. But for the artist, number isn't the name of the game.

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"I don't keep track — I don't care for how many, it's not really about fashion," he explained. "It's about style and saying something with how you dress. I don't even keep track nor do I take long to get ready. I just woke up from a nap 10 minutes ago."

Perhaps it's that modest attitude (and talent) that led Brian Feit, Ed and Bruce Starr — co-founders of BMF Media Group, a NY-based marketing agency — to want to help the rising talent gain recognition by selecting him to perform at this year's Music Lounge, which in years past have seen the likes of then-up-and-coming artists Lady Gaga, Kesha and Mumford & Sons become global superstars not long after their performances at the annual soiree.

PARTY PEOPLE: Joe Jonas and Bruce Starr at the Music Lounge.

"For me, music shouldn't be about one genre. We picked three artists that are all over the map," said Bruce Starr, who also invited Brooklyn trio Wet and rapper G-Eazy to be the evening's performers. "That's the point of discovery. Music should be all genres. That's the essence of Lollapalooza."

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As expected Jidenna killed it onstage as he made the audience go wild during his live renditions of "Classic Man" and "Yoga."

And for those who aspire to be a classic man, Jidenna left us with these words of wisdom: "A classic man is a distinguish man. He cares about taste and his craft. He's all about the simple model that I live by — eat, drink, be swanky and have fun getting the job done. He makes sure that he's excellent in all things and that he cares about his neighborhood immensely." Classic, man.

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