Young German Dj & Producer Lukem is an electronic music act to watch. His very first single “Stay Down”, a collaboration with Adam Veldt and MIZ, was released in 2019 and and became a success on various streaming platforms.
We had the chance to chat with the ambitious ForTunes user.
What are the biggest challenges you face as an up and coming artist in the digital age?
Ironically, it’s spreading your own music. Now you can ask yourself how that is supposed to be in the digital age? It is extremely difficult to create interesting content & to attract new fans for yo. There is a huge rush on social media channels these days in which it’s hard not to get lost in. Every aspiring young artist will understand me. I also find it difficult to get good gigs to show presence.
Could you sum up some personal milestones in your artist development?
Yes, there is already one or the other notable success! In the early days, around 2016/2017, I only had smaller gigs in local clubs. My hometown has just over 30,000 inhabitants and can be called “Kuhkaff” in german (laughs). But then I had the chance to play for 30 minutes in a renowned club in the main area. That was a very good feeling. It was the first time that I was able to present my music to a larger audience. The second milestone was definitely the label release on Beatdealer Records with “Stay Down”. That was my first track that I put out & it was signed directly. The third milestone was my first festival gig at Summerbeats this year. The festival was very small, but (despite COVID) it had a real festival character.
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Instagram vs. Reality ? Spaß beiseite, beim @summerbeats.odw waren wirklich Gäste & es hat mir ein riesen Spaß gemacht! ? Aber stellt euch mal vor, es gäbe kein Corona und wir könnten ganz normal zusammen ausrasten – vermisst ihr es nicht auch? ? . All jokes aside, there were really guests at @ summerbeats.odw & I had a lot of fun! ? But imagine if there was no Corona and we could turn up together as normal – don't you miss it too? ? . . . #dj #djing #djlife #festivals #music #housemusic #house #slaphouse #basshouse #deephouse #tropicalhouse #futurehouse #edm
What do you think the older generation of music creators can learn from the young folks?
I think in terms of “social media” the long-established artists can learn a lot from the younger generation. Especially when it comes to content and new trends in general. The younger generation often is faster up-to-date.
When you start a new track – what are the first steps?
When I work with sample vocals, the first thing I do is pull the acapella into “FL Studio” and start making the bass melody, i.e. finding the right notes. Then I add claps, a kick and hi hats to get a feel for the beat. And then I go to the drop relatively quickly. I think you need the basic idea first so that you can work “in peace”. At the end I add effects, filters and automations.
Name your top 3 plugins. Explain why you think they’re awesome!
My favourite plugins are Serum, FLEX and OTT. I really like the design of Serum and found my way around right away. FLEX I find very diverse when it comes to real sounding instruments. And I think OTT is good because it can push your sound to the limit. I have an OTT on every melody channel.
How do you deal with your visual concept on social media?
Back in my early days I really didn’t pay much attention to my content. Then there was selfie here and there or a mirror image as a feed post. But now I always have someone else photograph me. Then I edit the images and then upload them after a careful selection process. Yes, sometimes you really feel like you are in a model agency (laughs).
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Marmor, Stein & Eisen bricht, Corona gibt es in Du?sseldorf nicht ? Dieses Wochenende in Düsseldorf verbracht, von einer Pandemie ist dort wirklich keine Spur. Tat gut mal wieder unter Leute zu kommen & das Leben der Nacht mal wieder genauer unter die Lupe zu nehmen ??? . . . #dj #djing #djlife #musicproducer #producer #music #housemusic #futurehouse #basshouse #slaphouse #deephouse #edm #tropicalhouse #city #bigcity #citylife #du?sseldorf
What is the role of intuition for Lukem?
A very big one. It often happens that my intuition outsmarts my rulebook. If something feels right, then you tend to listen to your intuition.
How important are data insights for your (strategic) decisions?
Very important. It helps me to keep an overview and above all to be able to look up many things much faster. Accordingly, you can then make many decisions much faster. For example after the release of a new track. There you can see whether a different promotion plan is necessary or whether everything is going better than expected.
What’s next for Lukem?
My next track will be out on October 23rd. Where exactly I can not reveal yet. It won’t be the last track this year either, I promise!
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