Who is Lui Peng? 10 questions with the British-Chinese singer-songwriter from his Brighton home

·Lifestyle contributor
Portrait of Lui Peng. (PHOTO: The Linch Agency)
Portrait of Lui Peng. (PHOTO: The Linch Agency)

SINGAPORE – Lui Peng is a man of few words, apparently. He prefers to let his music do the talking.

He picked up on the first ring when I called him for our interview at 11am UK time. We exchanged the usual pleasantries, I gave a brief introduction of myself and we dived right into the questions.

The 26-year-old first broke into the scene at the tender age of 19 when he began posting acoustic covers of famous pop songs on YouTube, with his rather unique approach to music – a signature blend of acoustic and electronic. Before that, he moved to London from China at just 9 years old.

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In 2017, he caught the attention of music aficionados with his Demons remixes EP, which included the tracks "Let Me Go" and "Nocturnal" (featuring London Rap Icon Che Lingo).

Lui Peng recently released his new single, “Disappointed” which is literally straight out of a page from your post-breakup diary. He tells Yahoo Lifestyle Singapore exactly what made him feel disappointed.

The cover of 'Disappointed' cover. (PHOTO: The Linch Agency)
The cover of 'Disappointed' cover. (PHOTO: The Linch Agency)

Home is in Brighton now. What does your regular day look like?

I barely just moved in. Just sussing out the house and waiting for the mattress to arrive. Usually I will just roll out of bed and write music for a few hours. And gym. For the last few years, I have been in London and before that, Surrey.

Who are your housemates? We see from your IG you have a huge fluffy dog.

Yes, I have a dog and her name is Coco. My housemates are Chris Thomson, a videographer for three of my music videos, and Josh from Storror (group of seven parkour and freerunning athletes).

Let's get into your music. Tell us about your latest single, “Disappointed”.

It didn’t work out with a girl and it inspired me to write the song. It is more hip-hop I guess. It is also more depressing than what I normally write. Indie-pop kind of style.

Lyrics that are memorable to you?

The pre chorus – girl I would love you so much better. Everything he does always seem to make you hurt. I tried to make you happy and not make it worse but you sent my love right back to me in a hearse – this bit really stood out for me. I don’t normally use dark lyrics in my lyrics.

Music is an outlet for me to get out what I am feeling. For me it is like the words I want to say but I don’t want her to hear from me. It is a part of me I want to express so it was a way to not be direct.

Tell us why should anyone listen to “Disappointed”?

No one should listen to it. Just kidding.

If someone is going through a breakup, it is something for them to relate to. It is not so much a sad breakup song but more to express the denial I was in at that time. It is the self-realisation that I was in denial.

What's your creative process like?

It varies. I can either start with an instrument or a lyric or a melody.

Have you written anything in Mandarin Chinese before?

I actually have written a couple of songs but they are not released yet. “Little Love” from my previous EP has a Chinese chorus.

Have you thought about publishing Chinese songs?

Definitely, my Chinese vocabulary is not that good but I’m definitely looking at the Asian market.

Who are you listening to right now?

I’m revisiting my roots so John Mayer and Drake. I also listen to rappers YBN Cordae and Bazzi.

The next single that I am working on…

It is a song called “Casual Lover”. With dating apps these days, it is very easy to get lost being in love and meeting someone new. It tells a story of two people who met but are not ready for a relationship but want more than just a fling.

So keep your eyes peeled.

“Disappointed” is available on all major streaming platforms.

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