INTERVIEW: Luke Royalty | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Despite everything that has happened in the last two years, grassroots music in the region seems to have survived with a surprising but almost insatiable positivity, and when I asked Darlington’s Luke Royalty why this might be he was quick to offer a sage response. “I think lockdown evened out the playing field for areas which would usually get less attention. It meant that the industry couldn’t just function through London like it usually does.” But the genre bending alt. rapper is not one to dwell on what might have happened in the past. Luke’s latest single Commuter is a feel-good lo-fi anthem with a bit of doo-wop thrown in for good measure, and I asked if the rest of his forthcoming EP, My Blue Room, would be of an equally sunny outlook. “Every song is different, which I’m really proud of. It’s quite personal and introspective lyrically as a lot of my songs often are I think, but it’s still happy sunny vibes at the same time.”

For those that aren’t already familiar with Luke’s music, his signature style is a mix of a lot of different styles and influences. Previous single Blue Peter, also featured on the EP, showcased his mellower side with an emotive and personal ode to those struggling with their mental health. Luke gave me a little insight into the creative process. “It changes all the time. I wrote [the EP] with my friend and producer Julien Flew and our writing process was so quick. We wrote and recorded Commuter in about two or three hours from scratch and a lot of the other songs were started and finished in a day, which was so cool.”

It’s quite personal and introspective lyrically as a lot of my songs often are I think, but it’s still happy sunny vibes at the same time

Luke is from a creative family of artists and musicians, and the confidence that comes with that clearly allows him to work so freely. That coupled with a strong work ethic has seen the singer already championed by Radio 1’s Jack Saunders. In fact, when we spoke Luke was still on a high from his recent tour with Jake Bugg and he told me how that came about. “I’m the luckiest sod in the world basically! We share the same management and when they mentioned the tour last year I was determined to prove to them I would be a good fit on the bill, and after some lethal summer shows of our own, we got the opportunity, which I’m eternally grateful for.”

Shy bairns, as they say, get nowt, and with that youthful positivity and enthusiasm showing no signs of diminishing, Luke is keen to build on the momentum for the rest of the year, so don’t bet against him delivering a couple more feel-good hits before the summer is out. “I honestly cannot wait for the summer! Last year was so good as it was our first gigs with my band so I’m buzzing to do that all over again. I just wanna smash out as many tunes as possible and release another EP in summer…”

Luke Royalty releases My Blue Room EP on 8th April via Soul Kitchen Recordings. He performs on The Georgian Theatre stage at Stockton Calling on Saturday 16th April.


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