Orchee Sorker | February 13, 2021
Photo by: James Foley
Pop singer-songwriter Louis Knight was always singing his entire life. His parents always say that he was humming ever since he could speak. Born in London, he moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania when he was about ten years old. Growing up, his father always tried to put instruments in front of him and his brother. Louis started formal piano lessons when he was in seventh grade, but did not find interest in the traditional method of learning piano which involved classical music. He ended up giving up until he was fourteen when his mother bought him a piano for Christmas. At that point, he began teaching himself his favorite contemporary songs by focusing on pop chords. He wrote his first love song when he was fourteen.
Music has always been a therapeutic process for Louis. With influences like Ed Sheeran, James Bay, Shawn Mendes, and Coldplay, he expresses they have impacted his style of music. His creative process involves sitting down to play an instrument and processing his various life experiences. He reveals, “I figure out all the little nuances as I go along. I kind of just start with playing, like putting down a cool progression and then just kind of talking, singing out my thoughts and feelings at the same time.” He communicates, “Telling my stories that happened throughout my life and being authentic”. That is an aspect he brings out when writing his music. During COVID-19, Louis has gotten the opportunity to write considerably more overall, but also there were times where he didn’t write for a month. Not being able to play live has affected his creative process, so he started virtual live performances and virtual songwriting sessions with artists like Francisco Martin.
Louis appreciates seeing his music resonate with people. Last year, in addition to his well-known journey as a Top 10 finalist in American Idol Season 18, Louis entertained fans through his “Save A Little Love” tour across the country where he sang in Walmart parking lots, fans’ houses, and businesses. He describes the tour as really intimate and loved connecting with each person who attended the shows. He recalls, “These are the moments which I'm going to remember for the rest of my life.” Louis’s most-streamed song on Spotify is 'Change' with over 640,000 streams.
‘Change’ was about going through the loss of one of his brothers and his best friend, Russell, to suicide. He explains, “As a tribute to him and everything that he brought to this world and as a message of hope for other people out there, that suffering, because there are too many people out there suffering and, and they need to know they're not alone and that it's okay. And that it's okay to seek help.” Louis tried to write about it for a long time but never could get the words until one morning. He got up early and his mentor at the time called saying “go to the piano and write.” Louis went downstairs to the piano and ‘Change’ was written in about half an hour.
His most recent single “London” was released on January 8. He was inspired to write ‘London’' after experiencing the loss of a long-distance relationship while he began pursuing his career as a musician. The long-distance started to fizzle out. That Christmas, he went back to England to visit my family, which really helped me a lot. Louis mentions, “Through all the hardest times, I really think family is what we can turn back to...to our roots, to the people who've seen us and who've helped us and watched us grow our entire lives. Going back to that familiarity.” He began writing ‘London’ a year and a half ago, then ended up finishing the bridge about six months later. Finally finishing the song, he recorded it in August 2020.
His main goal for 2021 is to keep writing, recording, and putting out music. With the right timing and deal, he is hoping to get signed to a record company. Once it’s safe again, he would love to tour this year to every city in America playing in venues and more of his fans. He also wants to have a tour in Europe so his extended family can attend. His biggest dream is to play Wembley Stadium in England and to play at Glastonbury Festival.
If Louis could leave the world with a piece of advice, he emphasizes, “Never give up at what you're working for and what your dreams are. Keep persevering. Believe in yourself. There are times where I don't believe in myself and then I realize you're being an idiot. Come on, you can do it. You gotta sort of keep pushing yourself. If you keep your head down, and if you keep working hard at whatever it is you want to do, you can create the opportunity you have of the success that you want”.
As he continues to put out more music this year, follow and support his journey. Check out his recent single ‘London’.