Steve Lacy Tops Billboard Hot 100 Chart Hours After Performing In Denver, Colorado
Just imagine you’re performing your lead single one night on tour, and the following day you wake up to that same song #1 in the US. The feeling has to be unbelievable, so musician Steve Lacy knows too well what this feels like. On October 2nd he was on stage in Denver, Colorado, playing the guitar and singing to “Bad Habit,” the following day, he woke up to “Bad Habit” being the #1 song in the US.
Steve Thomas Lacy-Moya was born and raised in Compton, California. Growing up, Steve was always interested in music, but it wasn’t until he started playing Guitar Hero that he decided he needed a real one. While attending Washington Preparatory High School, he got his start in music by being a member of the school’s jazz band. During his time in the band, he met Jameel Bruner, who so happens to be a founding member of the grammy nominated band “The Internet.” Shortly after joining the band, Steve took an interest in production. When the group was in the process of recording their third studio album, “Ego Death,” Lacy produced his first beat on the iPhone he had at the time. After his first production, he bought an iRig (a plug-in for his phone which connected directly to his guitar) to make whole tracks. He produced over half of the album, played the guitar on 7 songs, and featured on track 12, “Palace,” with none other than Tyler The Creator. The album “Ego Death” was released two years later in 2015 and received a Grammy nomination for Best Urban Contemporary Album, losing to The Weeknd’s “Beauty Behind The Madness.” This experience put a battery in his back, and sooner than later, he produced for the likes of Kendrick Lamar, J Cole, Isaiah Rashad, Twenty88, and many more! Eventually, earning himself a Grammy award for his work on Kendrick Lamar’s “Damn” album.
On February 17th, 2017, the debut EP “Steve Lacy Demo” was released. Lacy produced and recorded this whole project on his iPhone. Singing and playing his guitar directly into the phone’s microphone is how the project came to life. All the drum patterns were programmed and mixed on the iPhone using the app “Ableton.” The project had two singles, “Some” and “Dark Red” (one of his most popular songs). Lacy’s debut was met with great reviews, with some saying, “The six tracks are cohesive in both their smooth, sultry sound and their theme of young love.” It was given a 7.5/10 by Pitchfork as well. After his debut EP’s success, Steve was back to business in no time, appearing on Tyler The Creator’s “911”. Within a year, he co-wrote and produced Ravyn Lenae’s EP “Crush” he released another album, “Hive Mind” with “The Internet,” and produced for Solange and YG as well. The list doesn’t stop there; he co-produced “Jet Fuel” for Mac Miller’s 2018 album “Swimming” along with “Just A Stranger” on Kali Uchis’s album titled “Isolation.”
Lacy was making a name for himself. He was known for his hits with everybody else but was preparing himself for his own hits; little did everybody else know. This time, he stepped out, showing he was just as good as a solo artist. While he was still doing work with other artists, Steve began to start on his debut album, “Apollo XXI.” Throughout this process, Lacy announced that he had signed a record deal with AWAL, an imprint owned by Sony Music Entertainment. With anticipation for his debut, he released 3 singles, lead single “NSide,” “Playground,” and “Hate CD.” Over time the project was nominated for Best Urban Contemporary Album at the 2020 Grammy Awards, his first nominee as a solo musician! Steve Lacy admitted that his dream collaborator was super artist Prince, and his biggest influence production-wise is Mac Demarco. When you listen to Steve’s music, that is definitely the experience you get, Prince vocals mixed with Mac Demarco production.
Things had come full circle for Steve; he had finally been nominated for a Grammy as a solo artist. This was huge for him because it played a big part in how he would roll out his next project. In June of 2022, he announced he would release an album titled “Gemini Rights,” and it would be coming out a month later on July 15th. His first single for the album “Mercury” debuted on June 15th. Two weeks later, none other than the melodic, soulful, and tuneful song we all love, “Bad Habit.” Instantly the song received excellent reviews, becoming viral on social media sites like Tik Tok, and Instagram played a significant role in that reception. The music birthday was released on my birthday, June 29th, 1996, and happens to have 29 million views on YouTube. Everything about this release is captivating, from his clothing choice, such as the black waxed leather skinny jeans, to the white dress button-up and tie with a black money sign across the front. Finally, the highly anticipated album “Gemini Rights” came out, and at this point, Steve was more significant than life. With all this success he was receiving, it was time for him to embark on a headlining tour of his own. Steve Lacy announced he would take New Jersey native singer/songwriter Fousheé along on his “Give You The World” tour as his opening act. The talented Fousheé is best known for her song “Deep End,” which was viewed over 5 million times on YouTube. She was also featured on the TV show The Voice, but few know she is credited for helping Steve Lacy write and produce half of the new album “Gemini Rights.”
The first stop on Steve Lacy’s “Give You The World Tour” was my beloved hometown Denver, Colorado. Tickets were sold out within the first few days; only due to my big sis Liz was I able to go, thank God!
It was hard to even get a parking spot near downtown Denver at the Gothic Theater without walking far. After getting to the door, you could tell tonight was going to be an all-out experience. I got there late due to parking, but I got to catch the end of Fousheé set, and it was worth every second of it. She is very talented, has a significant stage presence, and sounds like her live music (which we know isn’t always the case for artists). The DJ of the night then began to play music to keep things going while everyone waited for Steve. After about 20 minutes of intermission, the lights cut off, and the venue was Instantly pitch black. A big white light shined onto the drummer as he gave a solo for his introduction to the crowd, and I must say he got everyone pumped up. Lights began to flash, and a guitar began to be played at high speed by nonother than Steve Lacy himself. He approached the stage wearing his signature dress shirt and tie, leather skinny jeans and belt, and his signature braids. The crowd went crazy at his arrival, screaming at the absolute top of their lungs; there wasn’t a quiet mouth in the venue. Once he played the intro to his album “Static,” I knew that all the fans, including myself, were in for a great treat! He performed multiple songs from “Gemini Rights”, he performed “Buttons”, “Mercury” before moving onto tracks from his previous projects Apollo XXI, and Steve Lacy Demo. The band began to play “Only If”, “Playground” “NSide”, and “Lay Me Down”. His core fans, and people who have been around for the beginning could really appreciate this, the crowd was very reminiscent in memories as he then played “Some”, and “Ryd” songs that The Internet’s Syd played a big part of production wise as well.
After a brief intermission, he brought out Fousheé to assist him with his tour name single “Give You The World.” Shortly after they performed their duet “Sunshine,” the chemistry on stage between the two was very apparent and refreshing to see as they had the Gothic Theater singing along word-for-word. She stayed on stage as Steve performed his last couple of songs, “Cody Freestyle” and “Amber.” Once she left the stage, the moment that the audience came for was now upon us all, the lights were dimmed, and instantly Steve began to play the #1 song on Billboards Hot 100, “Bad Habit.” During the song’s breakdown, Lacy began to dance on stage and quickly drew praise from the crowd as they all sang, “You can’t surprise a Gemini, but you know,” at loud volumes. He told the crowd, “for this to be my first time in Denver, I love it, and I cannot wait to come back, thank you Denver. Love you”. His audience began to cheer, and shortly after, a call for an encore began. After about 5 minutes, the lights went completely black, and he came back onto the stage, and there he was again, ready to give the crowd one more song as they asked. The band played the song that Steve is mainly known for, “Dark Red,” and all you could hear were roars from the audience, most of them just then realizing that he hadn’t performed this song the whole night.
Make sure to check Steve out this Sunday on Saturday Night Live, also make sure to stream/buy the project! Stay up y’all