Rapper Luke Christopher talks music and success

Up-and-coming artist Luke Christopher performs at FAU on his Trendsetting Tour. He sits down to discuss music and success


Max Jackson

Luke Christopher, a rapper, singer­songwriter, producer from Los Angeles, CA dances onstage during his first ever show in Florida at FAU’s annual Trendsetter Tour. Max Jackson | Staff Photographer

Payton Frank, Contributing Writer

Up-and-coming rapper, writer and producer Luke Christopher made a stop at the Burrow Bar and Grill on Tuesday as part of the 2015 Trendsetter Tour.

The goal of the tour is to showcase emerging talent at different colleges and universities across America. Past acts to come to Florida Atlantic include Bryce Vine and Machineheart.

Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, Christopher began his solo career in 2011 with several songs including his single, “Roof Tops,” which featured Asher Roth. He then released his debut mixtape entitled “Building Skies” in 2012, followed by “TMRW, TMRW.”

In March of this year, he was the opening act for Big Sean at Indiana University and has since toured major cities including Chicago, New York, Baltimore and San Francisco.

On Sept. 11, Christopher released a double EP, “YSTRDY” and “TMRW,” which contained remastered songs from old projects, as well as new content including the hit single, “They Know.” After its debut on iTunes, “TMRW” received a spot on the Top 100 albums list in the hip-hop/rap category.

Prior to his performance, the UP got the chance to sit down with Christopher for a brief interview.

Luke Christopher performs to a crowd of approximately 15 people at the Burrow on Sept. 30. Mohammed F Emran | Staff Photographer

UP: When did you get signed and was that your initial goal?

Christopher: I got signed senior year of high school by Interscope Records. It wasn’t my original goal to get signed. It was more like I wanted people to hear the music and it just helped because we had tons of ideas for videos, but we didn’t have money. My parents weren’t rich and able to fund whatever I wanted. Neither was my management. We needed a bank or somebody that was willing to pay for a video, so that’s why we signed.

UP: Do you write your own music?

Christopher: I mainly write by myself, but my friends are in the studio with me working everyday and we bounce ideas off of each other.

UP: How does FAU compare to other schools you’ve visited during the tour?

Christopher: It’s poppin’. The weather though is crazy. I can’t understand how it’s raining right now but it’s hot. That does not happen in L.A. If it’s raining it’s cold. And the mosquitos, dawg … The mosquitos are crazy.

UP: Do you have a favorite song to perform?

Christopher: My favorite song is always the newest song I make, to be honest. It’s always fun to see how people react to it, and plus I always go crazy on it because I really like it.

UP: Who designs the cover art for your albums?

Christopher: I draw it. As we’ve grown, there’s been artists that we’ve gotten to collaborate with, where I’m like, “Yo these people are dope,” and then I entrust them with the vision that I have.

UP: Is there significance behind the titles of your newest EPs, “TMRW” and “YSTRDY?”

Christopher: I knew I wanted to put out two EPs, and then Dwayne and Mark who are two of my mentors were like, “Yo we should do one that’s the future, and one that’s in the past leading up to the story you want to tell.” Because I’m so young and it’s so early in the game that we have to figure out how to fit in, and we really wanted something that would tell our story: how we grew up.

UP: How do you think your most recent album has been received by the musical world?

Christopher:  It’s been kind of surprising because we put it out without promotion and thought we’d just see what happens, but people have been vibin’ hard. I’ve been getting tweets asking who I am, I think because I’m putting out something very different than the linear hip-hop that you hear nowadays on the radio.

UP: Do you have a favorite artist that you would like to meet/collaborate with someday?

Christopher: I would most likely trip out over Andre 3000 or Mos Def mainly because they were so talented and so dope. I want to be like them where every time I hear them snap on a song it’s insane. You can be the trendy dawg or you can be the one that stands out and is on top in 10 years. I’m definitely watching the Drakes, and the Kanyes and the Andres – the people that know how to make music that lasts.

UP: Do you have any advice for upcoming artists like yourself?

Christopher: You gotta be your number one fan in a weird sense. You gotta be the person that’s pushing whatever you’re passionate about. You gotta be the one that champions that. If you’re insecure about how you’re feeling, people don’t catch on. For me it’s like, if I feel a certain way, there’s a reason. I don’t want to be just poppin’, I want people to feel the same way that I do. I’ll get behind it 100 percent. A lot of artists don’t do that when they’re coming out because they’re insecure or unsure. They just want to be famous, they don’t want to have an impact. You gotta wanna have an impact, you gotta have a cause behind you, and that’s real.