Stevenson soph. opens for Snoop…and CHS

Andrew Luce doesn’t stand out as one who would perform in front of roughly 2,000 people just three acts before Snoop Dogg. He is a typical, unassuming Stevenson sophomore, down-to-earth, humble. Yet when Luce begins talking about his music career he transforms into someone who is clearly passionate about what he does.

On New Year’s Eve, Luce performed at Snow Globe, a three-day music festival in Lake Tahoe. Luce had to enter into an online competition against a couple of thousand other competitors to win his spot in the festival. After online voting, judges chose from the top 10 most popular artists and then listened to their music and hand-picked three winners. Luce was the most popular artist with 1,600 votes and won first place.

The Stevenson sophomore credits his friends and social networking for his success.

Of the three winners, Luce got first priority in choosing his time slot and appeared three acts before the New Year’s Eve headliner, Snoop Dogg.

“It was really fun, and seeing as it was my first festival, I learned a lot from it,” Luce says. “I also met a lot of people in the greenroom backstage.”

Luce realizes that the music industry is all about connections and getting out there. In the next month Luce will be performing at a Monterey Fairgrounds dance and will also DJ at Stevenson’s, CHS’ and Pacific Grove High’s winter balls. Depending on the quality of his performance, Luce may end up performing at the CHS prom as well. The electronic musician is also currently working towards performing at a venue in San Francisco.

At the start of his electronic career, during his freshman year, Luce created all original songs, yet as his work became popular, he realized that people can relate to singing a lot better, and since he has no one to sing for him, Luce has taken to using the vocals from popular songs or creating remixes.

Luce enjoys the ability to put his own twist on the music he likes, admitting that when it comes to musicians, Drake is his guilty pleasure. One of Luce’s most popular songs is his “Gas Pedal” remix, which only took him about 15 minutes to make.

“I didn’t make a single sound in that song. It was just a mash-up, and there are so many people who don’t understand that.”

Luce says that he would never want to just do mash-ups, but that they are easy and fun to make every once in a while. His true passion is making original work and creating all the components of a song.

In electronic music, criticism often comes about regarding whether performances require skill or if they are just pre-recorded.

“I personally think that performing electronic music could be a joke as well, especially coming from playing guitar. It’s a lot different.”

The Bay Area native uses technology called “Ableton” that allows him to interact with his music onstage. He explains that during performances he likes to actually make music or drumbeats live, transition between different songs and stay active during the entire set.

16-year-old Luce has also been active in music for quite some time. At 8 Luce took up guitar, at 10 he began to play drums, and at 13 he began to become interested in electronic music. Electronic music was appealing to Luce because he liked the concept of being able to create all the sounds that he put into the music.

“It’s kind of like being able to build your own guitar or build your own drums.”
In middle school, Luce did a yearlong project about electronic music, with a mentor who taught him the fundamental basics about electronic music. Just last year, Luce’s interest in making electronic music peaked.

“It was kind of an immediate change. I just stopped focusing on guitar as much and went immediately to practicing every day after school for as many hours as possible and just making music.”

With regards to the future, Luce has new electronic songs he wants to eventually release. The songs, he says, are a little bit different and don’t exactly fit into what he’s doing currently. Once the aspiring producer has a larger fan base, he hopes to gain the freedom to release anything, but for now he is going to continue with dance music.

“My goal isn’t to get rich,” Luce says. “It’s to be able to play music and not have to do anything else.”

-Carly Rudiger