Trying to make it in the music industry is a tough thing for aspiring artists. Independent artists trying to work deals with record labels hoping to make their dreams come true. For up-and-coming rapper Derek Luh, (pronounced “Loo”), it has been a constant battle the past year, resulting in fans wondering why they haven’t gotten music from him for so long.
The 27-year-old singer-songwriter finally decided to share the truth with his fans in a three-part podcast on SoundCloud called “Soon.” The word “soon” being every music fan’s dreaded answer when it comes to music and merch releases. For the past year, Luh hasn’t released music and wanted to give fans an explanation on why his answer has always been “soon” for so long. “I didn’t want them to think that I wasn’t working.” In the podcast, the independent artist explains the situation that after almost nine months of planning and recording music, the day before the next single is set, the starting label he was set to pioneer decides it is not going to continue any longer. With that, Luh decided and announced the start of his own record label, Low Sodium Records.
Under his own label, the California-native is back with music and his first single release in a little over a year. His new single, “Jerry Maguire” is the catchy, upbeat summer vibe we never knew we needed. The comeback single has a different style than his previous R&B/rap songs, but showcases more of his singing ability and vocals. “As an artist, you need this creative release after having this pent up creativity.” Luh explains how it feels to finally have music as a “different type of high” and wanting to share his work. With a comeback, Luh needed the promo for the single to be the best he’s ever had. He definitely delivered. Before the release, Luh released a video of text conversations between him and “Tom Cruise” and a video of the perfect Tom Cruise impersonator promoting the new single just as the Jerry Maguire star would.
Music for Luh has always been in his life– “Whether it was gathering friends when I was three with pots and pans, forming a band in the living room,” the rising artist has always been an entertainer. It wasn’t until he recorded and released his first song in 2013 that he decided to pursue his passion. Taking influence from personal experiences and the people in his life, Luh has a unique take on his sound with a laid-back, hip-hop vibe with hints of pop style, often being referred to as the “hip-hop Bruno Mars.”
With his own label and control over his music, Luh explained, “I feel like I’m totally in control as an artist. To have a home where my records, EPs and albums are gonna live forever.” With rapper, singer, songwriter, model and influencer titles under his belt, he can now add entrepreneur as he starts his journey with Low Sodium Records. He also plans on signing other artists in the future, “I want Low Sodium Records to be an independent artist sanctuary. I just want artists to be able to put music out and express themselves,” Luh said with an enthusiasm that truly shows his preparation for this new chapter.
As of right now, Luh is focused on himself and releasing content. At least one more single is set to release in the coming months and an EP in the next year. With new music, comes tour dates, so hopefully the rising artist will be back on the road next year. “I look forward to meeting the fans and going to perform these songs and hearing them sing it live,” Luh said. “That’s why I do this. I do this so I could get back on the road and perform. I love being on the stage.”
When asked where he sees himself in a few years, Luh answered with such confidence and faith in his voice of envisioning himself with “a couple plaques, awards, partnership deals. Growing the label and having it become a household name.” Derek Luh is an artist that radiates confidence in everything he does, but particularly in his work, which is extremely admirable. He truly defines what is means to be a passionate, dedicated artist and working harder than most being independent.
With so much planned for the future, if you haven’t already, add him to your favorites now because he is sure to come up. Luh is on a mission to be successful and help other artists along the way and there is no doubt he will succeed.
You can stream his new single, “Jerry Maguire” on any available streaming platform, subscribe to his YouTube to check out his previous music videos and upcoming ones, and follow him on Twitter and Instagram.