Written by Kelly Holm
27-year-old Derek Luh began his musical career in Yelm, Washington, far from his native state of Southern California. He was so nervous that he “didn’t even talk on stage… just kept asking how everyone was doing.”
But, being himself and saying whatever comes to his mind has taken Luh a long way. A model, artist and entrepreneur, he has four albums and one EP already under his belt, with a second EP coming soon!
More than two years have passed since Luh’s last EP, Disposable Hero, so we’re sure fans may be getting antsy for the big release day.
“The EP is super fun and experimental,” Luh promises. “I touch on real life events, break-ups and past issues [in] life… [and] there are more live instruments.”
Until the EP emerges, though, Luh’s listeners can relish in the singles he has released in its anticipation, like today’s release of “Hoodie.” Listen below!
“‘Hoodie has been in the works for about a year now,” the Sublime fan says. “It was about my ex, I still had her hoodie in my car.”
“Jerry Maguire” is another fun release. Its suave blend of pop and hip-hop, as well as its stream-of-consciousness lyrics, make it sure to appeal to fans of Vulfpeck’s “Animal Spirits.”
“Still eat ribs on a vegan diet/Open up ya door I’ll light ya fire/Wanna live large like Tyson’s tiger/We know Clinton hit it man don’t deny it,” Luh intones on the track, accompanied by a lyric video with graphics that bring back nostalgia for Bill Clinton-era technology.
Art and business are irrevocably intertwined for Luh, a successful model who has advertised for brands like Puma and Armani Exchange. So, it’s no surprise that he founded his own music label, Low Sodium Records.
“Being self-funded and finding revenue is tough,” Luh says. “I wanted to start something that was 100 percent owned by myself, so I started Low Sodium. Honestly, the biggest thing I’ve learned is how expensive lawyer fees are.”
At the end of the day, though, the biggest reward Luh gets from his creativity is intrinsic. Whether he’s prepping with coffee for a day penning songs or singing along with a crowd of energetic fans to “It’s Luh,” it’s his mom who said it best: that he’s driven to do anything he wants.
He’d love to sell out The Staples Center someday with Rihanna jamming out in the crowd, but, in the meantime, he just wants fans to have fun with his music.
“[I knew I wanted to be a musician] after I put out my first song and saw the reaction,” Luh said. “I just go in there and have fun.”
Follow Derek Luh
Listen To “Hoodie” here or below!