Woensdag gaf Theophilus London een optreden in de Paradiso en wij hadden de kans om vooraf een hartig woordje te spreken met de man die wij al een tijd aandachtig volgen. Onder het genot van ”stropwaffles” en een kopje thee hebben we onder andere over Amsterdam, muziek, groupies, schapen en zijn toekomst gekletst. Enjoy!
You were born with a perfect name for an artist: Theophilus London. Theophilus means ”loved by the gods” in Greek, are you a religious person?
”As a kid I grew up in a church, but as I got older religion became more something personal. I don’t really need to go to church to practice my religion, I just practice it right here *wijst naar hoofd*.
What’s your favourite artist at the moment?
“A friend of mine Michael plays in a band called Passion Pit, that’s my favourite band right now.”
“I actually got some things in the making already, we have been working on some stuff.. So it’s gonna happen!”
What other artist would you really want to collaborate with?
“There are some photographers I would like to work with, but when it comes to music I would have to say John Mosh. He produced the record ”Ultraviolent” on Jam!, one of my favourite records, so I would like to get back in touch with that guy haha.”
So you don’t have any idols you want to do a song with?
“Well, I don’t really want to collaborate with my idols. To tell you the truth, it’s pretty scary. I grew up watching them, so it’s really intimidating for me to work with them. It wouldn’t do much for me.”
”Michael Jackson, Morrisey from The Smiths, Whitney Houston. Me doing a collaboration with Whitney Houston right now is not really my dream, because I admire her so much that I wouldn’t think of myself doing a song with her, or Michael Jackson for that matter. It just takes away the whole purpose of that person being my idol you know? Just so I can say “aaahh I’m singing with my idols ha! ha!” ?”
Yeah, you might aswell just use their songs on your mixtape haha. Do you want to become big, like the idols you mentioned?
Right, so you are able to connect to more people. Did you ever expect your music to be this well received? You are now touring trough Europe for example, which is kind of big for an American artist!
“Yeah, it’s very big! Well, I dreamed off it, but I didn’t expect it. Everyday I put out in the universe and to myself that it would come true and it just happened like this *snap*. Ofcourse it took strategy, it took time, it took effort, it took work.. It took alot of work! But it came true. I’m just happy, I’m living it and not trying to think about why it is happening or when it started to happen. I’m just living the moment and that has been great so far!”
So what has been your favourite place you’ve seen thus on your tour?
“So far Dublin has been beautiful. The beaches, the mountains we’ve seen, the countryside, the sheep! I forgot that sheep existed! I thought sheep were fake and only existed in books or something haha. I’ve never seen a sheep in my life and there they were just walking around. Like WOW what are these guys?! Is this where we get our clothing from? haha. But Dublin is great, it’s really self-relaxing. Amsterdam has been like WOW WOW, crazy promiscious and everything, damn!
” Oh it’s lovely! I had a dream about a city where everyone drove bikes, so it’s great to see how that works out in real life. I wish we could ride bikes in Brooklyn all day and get tickets from the police haha”
Did you get hit by a bicycle yet?
“Ah no, I didn’t get hit.. But I have to say it was close! One thing I noticed aswell is that you can tell how pretty a girl is by how fast she rides her bike. The faster, the prettier. The women just zooof you by over here!
Do you have alot of groupies already?
“Depends on what you call a groupie?”
Good question. I guess people liking you for being famous.
“Then I would say there have been some. There are guys and girls who come up to me to tell me how much they love my music and who just support what I’m doing. Those are not groupies. But there are girls who don’t know what I’m doing, but just are excited about ”the fame” or something and want to spend a night with me. I would say that’s a groupie.”
Have you already had that on tour?
“Yeah, girls who talk all this yabba yabba.. but it doesn’t do anything for me seriously. It just feels wrong.”
What would have you become if you didn’t have the talent to rap, a rocket scientist?
“Nah, nah. As a kid I wanted to be a firefighter and even a doctor at some point, until I realized how much classes I had to take and stuff haha. I think I see myself as a writer foremost, because I started as a writer as a kid. And if I wasn’t doing music maybe I would be travelling and taking photos.”
Ok, and where do you see yourself in 10 years?
“My brand being bigger. My brand consists out of me and anything I produce. Music, art.. art expresses itself in many forms, clothing, films, dance, clubs etc.”
You love dancing don’t you?! What’s your favourite Michael Jackson move?
“My favourite MJ move is the moonwalk, that shit is crazy! You know, I grew up watching dance movies, like Dirty Dancing and all that stuff. I like seeing people dance. I like dancing.
“2 years ago I found this in a thriftstore and thought it was cool because I like vintage cameras, so I bought it for a dollar. Then I got stopped in the street all the time by people who really liked it, even when getting chinese food and shit haha. I decided to call the company to ask for more and now I’m wearing it non-stop. You know when a rapper gets signed for his ridiculous chain with the face of cookiemonster in diamonds and stuff.. this is my thing. The camera. It’s a part of my brand. *wij nemen een kijkje erdoorheen* It’s a good drug tool too haha, I got over that fact though.”
Tevreden knabbelen we verder op onze stroopwafels en proberen tevergeefs uit te leggen wat er nou precies tussen zit. Ja, stroop. Later op de avond geeft Theophilus een supertof optreden (zie hier foto’s van het optreden) die nog maar een keer bevestigt dat de toekomst er voor Theophilus London alleen maar groots uit kan zien!