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C-MAT- Observations From Planet 358

C-MAT is an enigma. With a background shrouded in secrecy, this genre fluid artist is intent on making their place known not only in the Chicago music scene, but beyond. This air of mystery leads one to see that the influences are vast, and not set in one musical genre. Here is what we do know. They attended Columbia College Chicago, and in less than a year, have been performing at various locations in Chicago, and also have performed at the prestigious SXSW Conference in the spring of 2022. This week their combustible energy was on display as they performed three originals and a cover for “Sessions @33.”

Sitting down and speaking with C-MAT, one can observe that they are intentional in everything they do. In other words, this isn’t a gimmick, rather it’s bringing attention to the vibe as well as the musical flow, which sits squarely between punk, rock, hip hop, pop, and scream core. The message is, as they state, “open-mindedness, honesty, progression, reflectiveness, and love.”

The answers to questions come together seamlessly. This stream of consciousness is most evident as we discuss Columbia. “I chose Music Business with a concentration in Artist Management as a major because I feel that not enough artists understand the business side of the industry, and this could lead to them being taken advantage of by others that don’t have the artists' best interest in mind. Not only do I want to protect myself against unfair business, but I also want to start and grow businesses of my own throughout my career, which is why I chose this field.”

As C-MAT unwinds before their Sessions @33 performance, the topic of influences come up. Being from, as C-MAT details, “Planet 358,” their music is extremely hard to pigeonhole, and this according to them is because, “I’m influenced by everything. Life itself influences me. But musically, I listen to all genres of music. I tend to stay open-minded and appreciate all styles of music. That being said, my go-to genres are progressive metal, hardcore, rap, jazz, funk, R&B, and house music.”

With live performances which are, according to C-MAT, “energetic, loud, welcoming, and full of love,” it is not surprising in the least to hear that their showcase made an impact on the SXSW audience. “Performing at SXSW was a great opportunity. The entire event was a highlight for me. Being able to perform somewhere that I’ve never been before, in front of people that probably would’ve never heard of me unless they were part of the trip was special. I appreciate the AEMMP team & Speakeasy for allowing me to have that experience.”

One of the reasons that “Sessions @33” resonated with C-MAT was the very thing they preach: collaboration. “I believe that Sessions @ 33 is great for all creatives at CCC because students may see a performance and not only connect with the artist, but may also think of ways that they can contribute to the artist’s career with their skills. A designer may think of outfits, a visual artist may want to paint them, a photographer/videographer may want to have a photo/videoshoot, a producer or another artist may want to work with them, etc. This is a way for students to be a part of the artists’ careers from an early stage and grow with them, and I believe the possibilities of collaboration are endless with just one performance at Sessions @ 33 being aired.”

C-MAT is not content to rest on their laurels when it comes to their goals. “My future plans are to grow and connect with my fanbase, reach a point in my career where I’m able to support my family and myself off of music, and eventually start and grow businesses in the music, fashion, and food industry. People can connect with me on TikTok @cmat.8 and Instagram @cmat8.”

Sessions @33 is a brand-new series featuring Columbia College Chicago music artists performing a 4-song set in an intimate performance space at WCRXFM, Columbia’s very own radio station. In addition to the artists getting exposure, students from various departments . Please support these fantastic up-n-coming artists, as well as the collaborative efforts of the students involved behind the scenes, by watching sessions on YouTube, as well as listening to the podcast version on either Apple or Stitcher.

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