When you hit a low point in life, the easiest thing to do is give up. Struggles in life helps strengthen your character and Missouri Western student Louis Erby had to learn that firsthand.
Erby is an aspiring rapper with a vision of getting a record deal from anyone who is willing to take a chance on him.
Even with big dreams of becoming a hip-hop artist, Erby says that his priorities still haven’t change, including his schoolwork and delegating skills for Black Student Union.
“My first focus has been on school,” Erby said. “It’s school over everything right now because before music, I have to make sure that everything is good in the classroom as well as my presidency with BSU.”
Being prepared for the future is one of the reasons that Erby puts his schoolwork and BSU presidency first before anything.
Erby understands that in order to make it the popular business of hip-hop, his focus and knowledge will be one of his backbones in music.
After the summer of 2009, Erby was struck by reality when he hit a rock bottom after a good deal of success from his previous mix tape “Pre-Game.”
He released the mix tape that summer and started doing many shows off of the mix tape. A second mix tape from Erby was well anticipated, but lack of money and resources put a damper in his plans.
“Ever since the drop of that mix tape, life has hit me in the face,” Erby said. “I had a nice little run off of Pre-Game, but my money situation got bad and I ended up not having the money to pay for studio time to record a new mix tape.”
Pre-Game was recorded at a friend’s home in which Erby stated that he spent a great deal of his time at. When his friend moved out, Erby had to find another place to make music, putting a hold on his aspiring music career.
With the odds against him, Erby did not fold. He took on the struggle and continued to write and focus on school until he was back on his feet again.
“When I couldn’t record, all I did was write,” Erby said. “Some nights I stayed up and just continued to think of new ideas. The time off helped me build up more and more lyrics for my next mix tape.”
Erby hooked up with Western student Nick Niemeier and has started recording his new mix tape Late Night Flights.
Niemeier is now the DJ for Erby and has allowed him to use his studio to get his music career back on track.
Over the period of time that Niemeier has worked with Erby, he has noticed the style and passion that Erby displays each time he steps in the booth.
“I think that he is a great artist,” Niemeier said. “His lyrics are very real. He describes everything that he goes through in his personal life and it makes his music compelling to listen to.”
Niemeier also said Erby is a man of good character and everything he does, he does with great pride. He makes sure that everything he starts, he finishes it.
Daniel Cole, a drummer for Warner Bros. artist XV and Western’s drumline, has also been working with Erby since their freshman year here at Western. Cole and Erby made a couple of tracks in Cole’s studio and the two have been close since.
“I feel that Louis is a good artist,” Cole said. “He has the right passion and drive for it. He is also very determined. He’s willing to do whatever it takes to make it to the next level.”
As for Erby, he plans to premiere his “Late Night Flights” mix tape late in the fall. Erby stated that friends have sent him different beats to help make this mix tape better than the last.
“I’m going to treat this one more like an album,” Erby said. “I got some new beats and the fall is my time. It should be dropping around Halloween and Thanksgiving for sure, so MCs should be afraid and music junkies should be thankful.”