Native Gold Cost prodigal son Like Howell has traversed an interesting pathway across his decade long musical journey. Having honed his musical craft in the USA while signed to UMG, Warner and Sony Music, including a stint performing with X Factor boyband What About Tonight in 2012, he hooked up with CreateTV in Los Angeles, providing priceless opportunities to collaborate with a bunch of quality songwriters and producers.
Having spent the last two years on a globetrotting sojourn of musical and self-discovery, Luke has returned to his home turf here on the Gold Coast, reinvigorated and ready to reignite his musical ambitions under his own name. The first fruits come in the form of a bouncy soul-pop number, ‘Stuck On You’, produced by Luke himself as well as upcoming Gold Coast producer Josh Beattie, which we review in our upcoming New Music column.
As Howell explains; “The song kind of came naturally to us. After recording about five songs that day, we came across this punchy bass line that moved us all in different/interesting ways. For what started out as lyrically sad, the groove of the record was anything but that. It evolved into to something magic and we knew that we were on a good path.”
We recently had a chat with Luke to find out more about his journey, his connection to the Gold Coast and what makes him tick musically..
Congratulations on your debut single, ‘Stuck On You’. Can you give us a brief rundown on how it came together, and the inspiration behind it?
Firstly thank you, It’s been nothing but love and I can’t believe the response! Basically myself and a couple of mates got together in Melbourne to write some music for my EP and in the mix of songs we came across ‘Stuck On You’ and knew we had something to progress on.
I was reading that you spent the past few years travelling extensively. How did this play a part in shaping your current musical trajectory? And were there any inspiring places or experiences you encountered in your travels that particularly stand out?
After myself and the boys I was in a band with came to an end, I decided to disappear for a little while and reignite my own passions in life and discover what I like about each passion. I spent time over in the USA working with some incredible musicians and some real inspirational people in my circle and really discovered where I fit within my own musical mind. France has also played a special role in my adventures, the city, people and vibes, what a place!
What is your connection to the Gold Coast and what drew you back here following your previous globe-trotting exploits?
I was born on the Gold Coast, so the majority of my younger life was spent scrummaging around in search of adventure and out in the ocean. It was one of the best upbringings I could have asked for. Plus the Gold Coast is one of the most incredible places the world has to offer, so it really wasn’t that hard a decision haha.
What’s in the pipeline for you in the way of other new music that you’ve been working on?
Well Josh Beattie, the producer of the song, is actually going to be working with me in my live band alongside his partner Amela, so having access to the minds of those two geniuses makes for a smooth transition into the next record. However, in all seriousness we are all working hard and thinking about the next song – that’s the journey I guess! I’m hoping to have something new in rotation within the next month or two.
Which musicians or artists have been most influential in shaping your musical journey?
Well that’s an interesting question to ask anyone isn’t it .. I love so many different sounds I’ve been hearing come out of Australia lately, which has been SUPER cool to see! There are so many hardworking, talented people we all live amongst, it has its pull and the inspiration never dies. But let me ask you, have you heard of Selve and Donny Love? If not, get onto it!
How have you been managing, both from a musical and personal perspective, as a result of COVID-19?
For myself, COVID-19 hasn’t really been too big a deal. Don’t get me wrong, it’s been such a terrible thing to have happened to the world, but I have also thrived off the positives that have come from it. I hope everyone has managed to see some light amongst the madness.
Luke Howell’s impressive debut release, ‘Stuck On You’, is available via streaming services. For more, check out his Facebook page.