Artist Spotlight: Lofty
Luke Peterson is one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet. When I first met him, he was hard at work in Aura Coffee, sporting double denim and looking relaxed as ever. In reality, he puts out quality work at an impressive rate, all while maintaining a UNT course load and job as an AV technician at the Union. His focus is in that almost aloof manner with which he approaches his work.
Peterson is a beat maker who performs under the name Lofty. His recordings have all the trappings of sensitive R&B hits, combined with an appeal that is fresh and rejuvenating to hear.
Music has been a part of Peterson’s life since the fourth grade when he picked up his first instrument.
“When I was a fourth grader, they had this program where they gave free orchestra lessons after school,” Peterson says. “I got a viola and started playing that. Then I got into trombone in middle school and high school.”
Peterson still keeps up with the trombone. It wasn’t until high school that he found out he could beatbox, and a friendly, ongoing battle with a classmate pushed him to explore that medium of expression even more.
“There was this foreign exchange student at my high school named Sanghoon Woo from Korea, and he could beatbox, too,” Peterson says. “He couldn’t really speak English, but he could beatbox really well. The whole school was riled up about us beatbox-battling. It was this epic thing that would happen occasionally. He would kick my ass every single time, but it was fun.”
Since junior year of high school, Peterson has been producing beats. He has a disciplined schedule for new, regular content.
“Monday through Wednesday I’ll make a whole bunch of little loops of stuff. I’ll just whip out a whole bunch of ideas really quick and then I refine them throughout the week, later on,” Peterson says.
Peterson also works with local singer Soleil in a new R&B/hip-hop project called Hiyella. They are in the mixing and mastering process of their material, and Peterson describes their collaboration as diverse and cohesive.
“It ranges from chill down tempo songs to upbeat club bangers,” Peterson says. “My production and her voice work so well together and we can quickly turn any venue into a full-on party.”
He has collaborated with many artists in both his hometown of Austin and in Denton, including Chad One Love, Gold School, and Lil Durt, to name a few. Peterson regularly creates, and his beats are available on several sites for artists to buy exclusively. For him, his music is an ultimate release, turning the pent-up energy into fresh, unique beats.
“It’s a way to release pent-up aggressions or emotions that I’m feeling,” Peterson says. “I’m a pretty sensitive person so a lot of it comes out like R&B music. It’s just kind of how my mind is geared and wired. That’s how most of my creative energy comes out.”
Peterson is performing at the Grotto in Fort Worth on March 18, and at Crown and Harp in Dallas on April 12.