Louie Blue is an 18-year-old singer and producer from Finland working around the clock to achieve his lifelong dreams of being a musician when I called him he was in the middle of working on a song.
Louie’s youth is not expressly evident in his singing. When speaking, Louie was confident but at moments he maintained the understandable nervousness of any teenager, an energy that is absent from his highly trained music. Louie is currently off of school because his exchange year in Mexico concluded, and he is on a break before he goes back to school in Finland, which has given him “time to focus” on his craft. He explained that his time in Mexico was “a rough time” in his life pushed him helped him grow, as he stumbled into spending time in the country’s “cartel area.” Louie shared that it was a “lonely” time for him and that he “got to know myself because of the time that I spent with myself.” This struggle helped him to find his stride though as he “kind of stopped being lazy.” To work he went.
Newly 18, Louie just hit this milestone in late December. He explained that in Finland when you turn 18 you are legally and functionally an adult, more so than in the US. However, most of his experience in the music industry was as a 17-year-old. He started making music in his parents’ basement at age 14, watching YouTube videos to teach him more about technical production, and by 17 he was seriously and professionally working on music. Before this, he had been singing since age six or seven, identifying making music as his definite purpose in life. When asked about this youth he explained that it has been better for him so far, as people are impressed with his work, especially for his age.
The “Notes” EP, Louie’s latest release, was made in the summer and spring of 2019 when he was just 17. He wanted to pay homage to the weather of Finland’s summers and springs, emphasizing the contrast in the way people feel and act in their harsh winters. Louie dropped the EP to show off the work he has done so far, and so that people will “take him more seriously, but Louie explained that while he is proud of the “Notes” EP, it’s barely the beginning for him. Louie explained that he wants his upcoming projects to be “more complete” and wants to make music that does not conform to any one genre. He chuckled, saying that if he had to pick a single genre it would probably be a blend of indie-pop and R&B. His influences include the Odd Future (OF) and Golfwang collectives (as displayed in his clothing), but his biggest inspiration is Frank Ocean, an artist known for bending expectations and genres.
Growing up in Turku, Finland, Louie learned three languages (not including Spanish and Italian) — Finish, Swedish and English. He explained that English music isn’t that popular in Finland, especially in rural areas. Louie is from a medium-sized city that is rich with culture, so English music has some traction there, and people especially respect Finish music with very fluent English pronunciation. Louie’s music is incredibly fluent, with his singing sounding like he could be a highly talented kid from Los Angeles (LA), California. LA came up in our interview, as Louie shared that he loves his city and Europe, though LA’s music scene could draw him there someday — Louie laughed and shared that he isn’t particularly fond of traffic and busy streets (which would be a problem in LA).
This focus on “someday,” on the future, is common for Louie. Louie shares that one of his main goals is to make a “beautiful album that I’m proud of and that I wouldn’t change anything in.” He also shared that he thinks of little else besides reaching more people and making sure his music is available to more people. His focus on listeners is another common theme in his philosophy, as he wants to have “really nice live shows” for fans, and wants to make sure that his music can connect with listeners at the deepest level possible. There is wonderful simultaneous shortsightedness and depth to his view of the future, that only young people seem to possess. Louie knows exactly wants to do with his life, and how he wants to reach people, but he has an admirable lack a focus on details, such as where he plans to live, that tend to create heavy anxieties for older creators. Louie Blue paused for a moment before saying he wants to make music that “leaves the emotion for the listener to decide.”
You can listen to his EP here:
Featured image courtesy of Louie Blue’s team at CentPourCent