Interview by Jordan Edwards

In 2015, Christian Lalama started a YouTube channel. He covered "Piano Man" (complete with harmonica solo), and wowed his elementary school with a version of Elton John's "Your Song." Momentum grew, and by 2018, the young Canadian singer caught the attention of record labels. He signed with Atlantic and broke through with the 2020 viral single "Miss Me."

While many artists continued to release new music during the early days of COVID, Lalama took a break. He continued to release covers, but the output of original music slowed down.

Now 18, Lalama has reemerged with a grown up sound. He released "Girlfriend," which riffs on the 2002 Fablous hit "Trade It All (Part 2)," in February. Now comes the new single "Nobody Ain't You." The song is a laid-back summer jam about reconciling a relationship he doesn't want to end.

As he enters this new phase of his career, Lalama reflects on how he got here and looks forward to the future.

Tell me about the new single “Nobody Ain’t You.” Is it about a real person?
“Nobody Ain’t You” is a song about the heartbreak that comes along with the end of a relationship . . . not so much about a specific person but about vulnerability and the desperation of not wanting to lose someone.

I love the vibe of the music video. Where did that bus come from?
The bus was a really cool aspect of the video because it allowed for us to build a setting that showed the honeymoon phase of the relationship and the reunion at the end of the video. But where it came . . . hmmm good question . . . how DID that bus get there?

A lot of artists your age are into the early 2000s. You sampled the 2002 song “Trade It All (Part 2)” on your last single “Girlfriend”. What’s the appeal of that era?
The first time I heard it, I instantly loved the retro vibe and it made me nostalgic for the music I listened to growing up.

You took an almost two-year break from releasing music. What prompted that and how did you spend your time?
That period of time was definitely not a vacation from music but instead gave me time to really focus on my sound and perfect my future releases. I spent all of quarantine grinding out original music as well as continuing my weekly covers and I’m so glad to finally be releasing music once again.

What do you remember about the early days of your YouTube channel? Did you have the goal of getting signed, or were you just having fun?
The early days of my YouTube channel was definitely more about me having fun, making funny vlogs, and posting covers to songs I liked. As my subscribers grew, I started to take it more seriously. Getting signed to Atlantic was a huge reassurance that all the time I’d put into my craft paid off.

You grew up in a small town in Ontario. Where did you perform as a kid (besides your school)?
I was in many bands when I was younger, from a duo with my brother preforming at small restaurants to a rock band with other young and super-talented musicians. We played live for thousands of people. Performing is easily my favorite aspect of being an artist.

What do you do to prep for a studio session?
I typically do vocal (funny sounding) exercises that definitely annoy everyone I’m with, but it gets the job done.

How much are you involved in the production process?
I record myself and comp most of my vocals. My dad is actually very skilled with most production software and is always willing to help me make my demos sound great before sending them off to be mastered.

What can fans expect from you in the next few months?
An absolute gem of a summer song that will be playing whenever you see a car with their windows down!

Christian Lalama – Nobody Ain't You [Official Music Video]

For from Christian Lalama, follow him on Instagram and subscribe to his YouTube channel.

Posted in: Pop