Rising star Che Lingo has opened up about his burgeoning music career following his signing to Idris Elba’s record label in February.
The South London MC – who only became a full-time musician three years ago and has been labelled “one of the most versatile rappers of his generation” – rose to notoriety following the release of his 2018’s Charisma EP which explores depression, love, and the choices young people face while growing up on London’s disadvantaged estates.
Same Energy, a track from the EP, gained widespread attention thanks to it being used as the soundtrack on Netflix’s Top Boy – and it wasn’t long before Idris got in touch.
Discussing his good fortune, he told the BBC: “I’ve gone from playing youth clubs, not knowing what I’m doing, to having a conversation with Idris Elba about an album. It was wild, but I maintained my composure. I think I’m quite good at that.”
Idris Elba’s record label 7Wallace took notice of Same Energy – a track that Cue used to call out producers and artists who’d ignored him during the infancy stages of the career – and his DMs soon went into overdrive.
“Fast forward a couple of months later, and Idris is on the phone calling me a genius and saying his son listens to me,” he excitedly recalled.
“I’m like, ‘You’re Idris Elba, bro! This is mad that you’re talking to me, just casually, about how sick you think I am.'”
After signing his name on the dotted line, Che was in the studio, and worked on his highly anticipated debut album titled, The Worst Generation, which was released in October.
Opening up about his new material, he explained that the album dissects the “suffocating” pressures of his neighbourhood.
“It’s a day in the life of somebody who’s perceived to be a road man. He’s just the youth that made some bad decisions as a kid. Now he’s grown up, he doesn’t want anything to do with that lifestyle, but he can’t escape it because things are still following him,” he said.
Prior to the release of his debut album, Che opened up about the process, stating making new music has “genuinely been the hardest time of my entire life”.
And his new album has gone down well with critics and listeners with the Independent giving it 4 stars out of 5, writing “this is an excellent debut.”
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