(AllHipHop Features) Luke James has been a force behind the scenes in the music industry for over half a decade. The New Orleans bred singer-songwriter has penned charting songs for superstars Chris Brown (“Crawl”), Justin Bieber ("That Should Be Me"), and Britney Spears (“Kill The Lights”). He was later hand selected by Beyoncé to appear in her “Run The World (Girls)” video and serve as the opening act for her “Mrs. Carter World Tour.”
Much like his animal kindred spirit, the wolf, James has an innate desire to conquer the terrain working with others, but he also has the ability to survive as a loner. The “I Want You” performer is ready to break from the pack with the release of his self-titled studio LP. The Luke James album will present an artist on a mission to share his own personal journey through love and heartache.<iframe src="http://cache.vevo.com/m/html/embed.html?video=USUV71101612" width="575" height="324" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe>
“I just felt like this album was the prelude to the Luke James story,” explains the Grammy nominated performer on why he self-titled the project. “It only feels right to name the initial cover of the book 'Luke James'.”
The crooner further tapped into his lone wolf mentality by limiting the guest features on the album to one appearance by Rick Ross. The Maybach Music Group leader adds a verse to the track “Options,” and he shows up in the song’s video which was actually directed by Luke.
“When considering ‘Options’ as the single, we just wanted to have a rapper on it,” says James. “I figured for that type of song, that type of message, I wanted it to be somebody that definitely had a voice that the people would adhere to. Rick Ross has that. It honestly happened organically. It was awesome.”<iframe src="http://cache.vevo.com/m/html/embed.html?video=USUV71401124" width="575" height="324" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe>
The rest of Luke James includes passionate solo tunes including “Exit Wounds,” “Glass House,” and “Dancing In The Dark.” The author insists all the cuts on the commercial project were 100% inspired by real experiences from his life just like his previous mixtapes #Luke and Whispers in the Dark.
Despite his affinity to reference darkness, James suggests the themes of his music are just reflective of his state of mind and mood at the time he put a pen to paper.
“I guess some of the best songs come from a very lonely place where I can really assess what I’m feeling, and I just put it out there,” states James. “I guess it would appear to be dark, but I think it’s more honest.”<iframe src="http://cache.vevo.com/m/html/embed.html?video=USUV71401624" width="575" height="324" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe>
It has been thirteen years since James started off a member of a three-man singing group at his N.O. high school. Following stints as a backup singer for Tyrese and being sign to the Underdogs production team as part of another group, Luke is pleased he is officially establishing himself as his own artist for the growing legion of fans supporting the Wolf James movement.
“It’s been a long time coming. I don’t know if excitement is the word. It’s more like ‘ready.’ I’ve been working on this album my whole life,” declares James. “It feels great. I’m glad to finally put it out - an official release. Something that people can really go support, buy, and own.”
Luke James is scheduled for release on Tuesday, September 23. The album is available for pre-order on iTunes.
Stream Luke James’ Luke James below.