Darius Lux is an upcoming singer-songwriter from Los Angeles, California who effectively combines rock and soul to produce some great pop music. Darius has incredibly profound and varied experiences in music and we were delighted when he agreed to complete a feature interview with Essential Pop. Read on to discover who inspires Darius musically, what he does to relax when not working and what he’s hoping to achieve over the next 12 months.
Q: If you could use a tagline of less than 20 words to describe your music and who you are what would it be?
Soulful and thoughtful rockin positive pop music by a singer-songwriter, legal alien and lover of life.
Q: What is your musical background?
I began playing classical piano and violin at age 6 and within a year was accepted at a music conservatory near London. By the time I hit early teens I felt unfulfilled by the rigidity of classical music and developed a strong hunger for American R&B, Rock and Hip Hop. This fuelled me to teach myself guitar, bass and drums and move to NYC where I got involved with all levels of production and performance.
Q: How have the last 12 months been for you?
It’s been a good past year with many new challenges and accomplishments. Most recently, I have found myself magically surrounded by people who make videos and have thus created 2 unique music videos over the last year which have been satisfying in different ways. I feel more open to the visual medium now and seeing where to take an idea beyond just recording it musically, I am excited to interface more with video in the future. I also played to the biggest crowds of my career so far with a gig at the Castro Street Fair in San Francisco to 1000’s of people – definitely felt like we were taking it all to the next level.
Q: Who inspires you musically?
So many people do and for different reasons. As a small child I was dazzled by Michael Jackson and Prince as entertainers and performers. Stevie Wonder has been a big influence as a recording artist, writer and singer. Artists like Tom Waits and Bob Dylan inspire me as lyricists and storytellers. Bono inspires me in his ability to grasp a bigger perspective of the world thru his music.
Q: Which modern day artists do you look up to?
More recently I have been very inspired by bands like Muse, so glad grandiosity and virtuosity have been brought back to Rock. I also love MuteMath – they have such a great, original sound and an epic live show. Michael Franti (Spearhead) inspires me as a human being; his message resonates greatly with me. Ben Harper too, every record just gets better and better and he is so prolific and always keeps it interesting with constant new collaborations.
Q: Is there anyone you would like to collaborate or gig with?
Ha, what a great question – you know, I’d love to write a song with Chris Cornell, his voice is staggering and it would be fun to really road test those pipes one-on-one, not sure I could gig with him tho, he’d blow me out the water! Gigging would be a different thing altogether, I’d like to play a gig with acts that are diverse and different from me like Foster the People, Collie Buddz, Keane and Nikka Costa.
Q: What songs are you listening to at the moment?
At a glance, “Cough Syrup” by Young The Giant, “Somebody that I used to know” Gotye, “Us and Them” by Easy Star All-stars, “Cinema” Remix by Skrillex, “Valleys of Neptune” Jimi Hendrix, “All the right moves” by OneRepublic, “Everlasting Light” by The Black Keys
Q: What is your creative process for creating a track?
Different every time, could be a lyric that is floating around and drives it, a new guitar gadget with a groovy sound, waking up in the night with a bassline playing in my head – the spark of inspiration is random and the process then varies on what type of catalyst I’m dealing with, it never gets boring
Q: What’s more important, melody or lyrics?
That’s a good question, its close but I’d have to say melody since music does ultimately transcend words – like, I could still fall in love with a song even if it was sung in a language that I don’t understand.
Q: Where are you based?
Q: What’s it like being where you’re from?
It’s the tops. I really love LA and Southern California tho I grew up in London and studied/lived in NYC. LA is perfect for this time in my life – it has so much live music and festivals all year long and who can resist the beach and the sun. Plus, I can go skiing in the winter a few hours away, or pop to Mexico or go into the desert.
Q: What are you currently working on?
A new album, on the one hand I wanna press a button that will just have the whole thing done and at the same time I am enjoying the new journey of making music again, allowing it to flow naturally, allowing it to change and be different than before…
Q: What’s been the highlight of your career to date?
Honestly, I don’t think I would say there’s been a monumental highlight yet – I had a great record release party at the House Of Blues (Hollywood), playing to 1,000’s at Castro Street, making the last video (“Way That It Goes”), but there is so much I am still driven to do that a real highlight is still waiting to manifest in its fullness…
Q: What are you hoping to achieve in over the next 12 months?
I’d love to be put on the map of popular music in some way or another – whether it’s a viral video, actual radio play, a great placement on a TV show or movie – any of those things would help greatly and make a difference now
Q: Do you have any gigs or shows that you’d like to tell us about?
I’m in the middle of booking the summer festivals – first one I just got confirmed for is the Sawdust Art Festival in Laguna. We play from 7-9 pm on July 20th; the rest is still coming together right now.
Q: What do you do to relax?
Hot tubs usually do the trick;) I love to be in nature, far away from the noise of industry and the city, being able to sit with my feet in a stream and listen to the birds is probably the most perfectly relaxing thing I can think of.
Q: Where would your favourite holiday (vacation) be and why?
Thailand, I have been before for and stayed for 2 months and would go again in a heartbeat. I love how it feels almost like another planet, there is modernism in the midst of ancient tradition and it all somehow works. I have traveled all over Thailand and visited the islands and it is jaw-dropping from the hill tribes to waterfalls to fruit dropping off the trees to 2000+ year old temples. Plus the people are so sweet and really do smile everywhere they go – hence its nickname “Land of a thousand smiles”. I’d also take a week in Fuji or Aruba too LOL
Q: If you could give a little piece of advice for new or aspiring musicians what would it be?
Never say never and never take “no” for an answer.
Editor’s Note: Darius Lux has the technical ability and all of the artistic attributes to enjoy a long and successful career in the music industry. We’re looking forward to his next album with much anticipation at Essential Pop!
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