If you don’t know about rapper of many talents, Theophilus London, then you’ve probably been under a rock.
This dope rapper reigning from the thoroughest NYC borough Brooklyn, is bringing a new fresh sound to music.
Whether it’s his style, his unique music, or just his overall swag, one thing is for sure, Theophilus London is a rare and hot commodity in the music industry.
GlobalGrind caught up with Theophilus to talk about his new video “Last Name London,” his personal style, his music and his interesting celebrity crushes.
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Check out the exclusive interview below!
GlobalGrind: “Last Name London” is premiered on June 20th. What was your vision behind that video when you were creating it?
One night I listened to the album real late night like one in the morning, with a friend and, you know, we were so inspired— I don’t know why, just really inspired. So, we like got the pen and paper out and wrote a treatment to each song.
You know, we just like moved everything off the living room and like turned off all the lights and listened to the music and then turn the lights on and start rambling about what video treatment for the song should we do and we came up with this idea.
First, we started off with helicopters and basketball, like people playing basketball. So I started thinking military-style helicopters, military-style basketball courts and military Janet Jackson dances and then we kind of filtered it to what it is right now, which is just like an ode to the Michael Jackson “Jam” video where he played Michael Jordan. I was in Brooklyn in a warehouse in Red Hook and Coco and Breezy came to be a part of it.
Your music gives us a ’80s feel good vibe with the tings, pops and the splashes of the synthesizers in a lot of your songs. We know that you love and admire Prince, Rick James, Marvin Gaye and Michael Jackson, but who else inspires you?
A lot of things, I don’t know where to begin. I’m usually inspired and influenced by people and music and pop culture. It’s never a specific thing. Rap wise, Jay Z is awesome.
In your own words, how would you describe your music?
I’m huge on songwriting, I really just want to write popular songs. This new record “Timez Are Weird These Days” is fast tempo, it’s my take on pop music. I think it’s raw, I have some influences of early R&B, there’s some electro influence on the way we do the drums. There’s ’80s, I think it’s such a new idea.
The way you package and deliver your music is totally different. That’s why people love you so much. When did you first start making music?
I think when I was like 17 or 18. I had access to a free studio and I would always go in there with friends and producers. I would try and make as many songs as I could in one day. It was like the most creative point in my life. I was discovering who I was as a voice, what I wanted to do and how I wanted to do it. I was really interested in the performing arts. I used to watch Michael Jackson and James Brown talent tapes.
If you could collaborate with any pop artist who would it be?
Pharrell Williams or Kanye West.
Can you describe what has been the weirdest thing you’ve encountered since becoming famous?
Someone snatched my hat off my head and just ran away. I have to start holding my hat on my head!
Is it weird that people recognize you and come up to you?
Not anymore. I was on a seven story billboard in New York City for a campaign for 4 months. I was all over the subway so a lot of people know my look now. But I feel sorry for any dark skinned dude with glasses that wear a hat and are being compared to me. I made the hat and glasses look popular and for a dude to rock a blazer and loafers in the streets. I am acceptive and appreciative that there are people that want to idolize me as an icon for style.
What’s one accessory or piece of clothing that you always want to wear?
If you have something you want to wear everyday, wear that everyday! I started making my own pieces. I just made my first two blazer jackets, a lot of detail with gold buttons and patches from Paris. I like bringing stuff back that you can’t find here. Rearranging fabric is fun.
If you were sent to a deserted island and could only take three albums with you, what would you take?
Marvin Gaye “I Want You,” The-Dream’s album and a Biggie record to keep me gangsta.
What part of Brooklyn did you grow up in?
Have you heard The-Dream’s new song, “Body Work” and “F*ck My Brains Out?”
Nah, but I heard the stuff he wrote for some of my other favorite artists. I think he’s cool.
Tell me something most people don’t know about you.
I’m a nice guy.
People definitely don’t think your mean.
That was a joke. [laughs] I like films and theater; I go to Broadway shows on my off time. I’m a young designer now.
Do you have any celebrity crushes?
Lindsay Lohan, Kat Stacks and I am really digging Kourtney Kardashian.
What’s your favorite color?
At the moment it’s salmon. I never have a constant favorite; it has to be something current.
What’s your favorite thing to eat?
This week it’s tacos, mostly steak.
What’s your most prized possession?
My phone at the moment. It’s the closest thing to me, it never leaves my side. I never sleep that far away from it. People don’t realize how obsessive the phone is; sleep next to it, wake up next to it, look at it all the time.
What’s your favorite liquor?
I don’t have one. I just drink respectfully and make sure I don’t drink and drive.
What’s been your favorite moment from touring and doing shows?
Meeting my fans after the show. Sometime we hang out and “Hangover 2” stuff happens.
GlobalGrind saw your video at the Brooklyn Museum and the crowd was so live, especially when you were playing Biggie. How did it feel to be back in your borough and everyone showing you so much love?
It felt good. It really messed up my head spiritually, in a good way, to see so many people that support me and listen to me and have an image of what I am. It made me really happy to see.
Anything you want to tell our audience?
I’m really excited about my album coming out July 19, “Timez Are Weird These Days”
I also designed this shoe for Cole Haan that’s coming out July 16. A triple blue classic suede buckle called “the Calypso Blues.” It’s my first shoe. Shout out to Brooklyn!