Hip-Hop Phenom and LA Native The Last Artful, Dodgr Pulled a Classic California Trick...

... by advancing her art with a move to PDX. Win for us!

By Fiona McCann August 3, 2018 Published in the Newcomer's Guide: 2018 issue of Portland Monthly

Why did you move here?

I came to Portland because, that I could see, there really wasn’t much of a thriving hip-hop scene, so I figured why not just come here and make myself known in a city where that hasn’t really happened yet, rather than trying in LA where so many people are trying to do what I do.

Did it work?

It definitely helped me get to the point that I’m at. If it weren’t for me meeting certain people I definitely wouldn’t be where I am and wouldn’t be able to work with the people that I’m working with now, so shout-out to Portland. You don’t know it until you get here, but there are so many phenomenal creatives in this city, and so many people experimenting in music and visual expression that I’ve definitely kept by my side this entire time.

What are the best things about Portland?

The fresh air, the water, the small-town vibes and the big-city feel. In LA everything’s at least a 20-minute drive, and here everything’s a five- to 10-minute drive. You get the city vibes, and you get the trees everywhere.

What are the things that are less appealing?

I think some social reforms could happen here. As a black woman, you don’t always get treated the same. That’s a bit of a pitfall—you don’t see many people who look like you in Portland, and I grew up in LA, where I didn’t notice that people were different because everybody was different. Here, I feel a little bit secluded, and need to find my community of people who identify as I identify.

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