LOVKN is a relatively new singer/songwriter and worship leader on the Christian music scene who hails from Phoenix. He blends creative pop melodies with a clean, energetic acoustic sound. While he has his own unique sound, I can’t help wondering if this is what Simon & Garfunkel might have sounded like if they hit the scene in 2020. Get to know LOVKN in this CCMmagazine.com EXCLUSIVE interview.
Singer/Songwriter, Contemporary Christian
Hobbies/Interests Apart from Music:
Building furniture, hiking, anything outdoors, reading the Bible.
Last Netflix Binge:
I stay far away from Netflix binging 😛
Coldplay, Paul Simon, Mumford, Lumineers, Andrew Bird, Sufjan, and Josh Garrels to name a few.
Very First Musical Purchase:
Electric guitar from Target
CCM: Do you have a favorite song from the new album? Why?
LOVKN: “Scripture” is a favorite. It’s not released yet but you will be able to hear it when the full album drops in late summer. “Scripture” is a song about my love for the Bible and the present day significance of a book that’s often written off as outdated and irrelevant.
CCM: What led you to pursue a career or ministry in music?
LOVKN: From the moment I picked up the electric guitar the summer before eighth grade, I knew music was the path for me. It was the dream and career I was willing to take a chance on and put all my eggs in one basket for. The ministry side of it didn’t come in until years later when I was 18. That’s when, coming out of a burn-out, I took a chance on playing guitar for the worship team at my church, not knowing at all what worship music was or what it meant to truly worship God. I learned a lot over the following years and God completely took His place in the center of my musical pursuit. Since then it’s been all about building His kingdom, not my own. I would have it no other way.
CCM: Do you remember that moment when you realized you wanted to make an actual career out of music?
LOVKN: I remember my first live performance in ninth grade for the big end-of-the-year talent show at my high school. My shaggy haired, mid-puberty self took a dive on a Stevie Ray Vaughan song with my garage band. It sounded horrible but I got an absolute rush from it and there was no doubt in my mind that it was something I would be doing more of.
CCM: If you could potentially tour with any other artist or band (that you haven’t already), who would you choose and why?
LOVKN: I would love to hop on a tour with Josh Garrels. His honesty and creativity in Christian music has been an ongoing inspiration for me.
CCM: What was the last song you listened to on your playlist or stereo?
LOVKN: “Your Ways” by Wade Walker
CCM: What was the last book you read?
LOVKN: The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel. It is an excellent book. The movie is fantastic as well.
CCM: If you could tell the world about another artist/band to check out, who would it be?
LOVKN: Go check out Beach Chapel. They are making incredible Christian music. My favorites are “Family” and “Dropkick.”
CCM: Name a song that you wish you’d written (and why).
LOVKN: I wish I’d written “I Can See Clearly Now” (Johnny Nash). It is such a happy and uplifting song and one that I’ve loved for a long time.
CCM: How did you arrive at the name of your new album?
LOVKN: “Faithful to Remain” is the title track of my upcoming album. The name was inspired by a recent season in my life where I found myself praying to God daily for “clarity” and I wasn’t going to move forward until I had it. It was honestly crippling. I’m thankful for the friend who came along and reminded me that, oftentimes having faith looks like moving forward without necessarily having that clarity or knowing of what lies ahead. In looking back on my journey with Christ I can confidently say that He’s never let me down. When walking forward into the unknown we can take heart in God’s faithfulness and that fact that it remains through every season. As the song puts it best, “you’re keeping me on my feet, keeping me on my feet, I don’t know what’s ahead for me but in you I’ll always find my peace”.
CCM: What can listeners expect in terms of the sound, style and lyrics?
LOVKN: I think I’ve narrowed down the “classic” LOVKN sound as “energetic acoustic bops,” ha ha. I try not to be so predictable so I’ve sprinkled in some new sounds on this album, a little drum kit here and there, some electric guitar (something I’m excited to do more of), some singing in other languages (spanish….even though I did horribly in high-school spanish class). It will sound like a happy medium between Into Freedom and Pilot of My Own Life.
CCM: What was the songwriting process like on this record?
LOVKN: These songs were written without an end goal in mind. They were written within the same season of my life and the same window of 6 months so they came out sounding somewhat cohesive. I would usually start singing the melody over some random chords on the piano or guitar and eventually fit in the words that felt right. I wrote these songs pre-10am, as I’ve found early morning to be the most inspiring time for me to write. I can think more clearly. It’s usually always melody/music first and then lyrics.
CCM: Are there any underlying themes or threads that tie this project together?
LOVKN: I think the title says it all, Faithful to Remain. This project is tied together by my experience of God’s faithfulness in my life.
CCM: How important is your faith or spirituality within your music?
LOVKN: Music and my faith are inseparable. Over the years music has become the way that I process life and express my emotions. My faith in Christ is the most important and significant thing in and about my life. If I’m writing songs from my heart and from an honest and genuine place, my faith will inevitably make it into my music. I love putting lyrics and melody to my prayers, cries of worship, of desperation, confusion, pain, moments of joy. I love writing music that helps give language and expression to others who feel or experience similar things but feel they don’t have the tools or ability to express themselves.
CCM: What message do you hope listeners will take away from your music, regardless of what they believe?
LOVKN: The message that Jesus is Lord and when put your trust in Him, the lifter of burdens and the Prince of Peace, you will find the true hope and everlasting life you’ve always been searching for.
CCM: What has been interesting to you musically lately? Perhaps something new to you in terms of listening habits or influences?
LOVKN: Instrumental music by Birds of Norway. Simplicity in melody over complex and brilliant harmony.