Southern California’s Inland Empire is a particular subset of the region, close enough in proximity to Los Angeles but not close enough to be considered exactly part of LA. Consisting of known counties such as San Bernardino and Riverside, the “IE” has a style and culture all its own. While the location might hide in the shadows of west coast hip-hop deriving from LA and the Bay Area, 18-year-old GirlzLuhDev is putting the IE on rap’s radar.
“The IE is very small. We don’t have many that do it here,” says the rapper following the release of his debut project, Day 1 Starter. GirlzLuhDev boasts a recent Capitol Records signing along with racking up millions of streams. Following the success of his single, “Tooka,” the rapper dropped his nine track project, giving fans a taste of his melodic sound. Each track contains high keys, finger snaps, and rhythmic bass. The rapper’s verses have a California twang with enunciated vowels that hover over the beat. His sound is classic west coast mixed with new wave SoundCloud rap.
GirlzLuhDev has a contagious energy that exudes youthfulness. He’s confident and sure of himself, yet humble and gracious. Graduating high school brings challenges of its own with friendships, finding a self-identity, and making plans for the future. He seems to have it all figured out. Rap is his passion and creating music that withstands the test of time is his goal.
EARMILK caught up with the young artist to discuss his rise to fame and creative process. He describes his hopes for his songs, “I expect people to want to hear it and replay it. I expect people to wake up in the mornin’ and start hummin’ my stuff.” He proceeds to bob his head and hum along to a beat, imitating his listeners, continuing, “So I expect a lot of it to get stuck in their head.” Every song has a contagious sound that can be played over and over.
Boasting a significant following on TikTok, GirlzLuhDev utilizes the app to showcase his music. He gets candid about the negative connotation associated with TikTok viral singles, expressing his desire for longevity. He says, “I just want people to like my music and like my stuff for me. I don’t want them to like my song because of one verse or like a dance that gets done to it.” Despite his love for the support from his followers on the platform, the rapper wants to cement his name in the industry beyond social media stardom.
Along with the release of Day 1 Starter, the rookie MC also dropped the visual for “Dangerously N Luv.” The video shows the artist enticed by a beautiful woman, equipped with colorful and vibrant backdrops. The mellow trap beat includes a piano tune and snaps. The hook is repetitive but catchy. Each bar blends into the next with vocalized harmonies as transitions.
GirlzLuhDev possesses a teenage swagger and finesse that is different from typical rapper confidence. His stage presence and energy seems to come naturally without any hesitation. From his smooth buttery bars to his grimy ad libs, the rapper has mastered the art of a mainstream track. He has a well put together look with a bad boy demeanor. The emerging artist is on the fast track to widespread popularity in the industry with the competitive advantage of a young beginning.
Day 1 Starter
- Mario Chalmers
- Dangerously N Luv
- Day 1 Starter (feat. Remble)
- Make Perfect
- Dead Bro
- Feel Away
- Tooka (feat. DACHINC)
- Used To