Airbud Talks Faith, Dad Bods, and His Music
Acquiring the name Airbud as a high school freshman on the lacrosse team, a senior “thought my hair literally made me look like Air Bud, the golden retriever,” Borchelt said.
The artist released his most recent single, “When You Wake Up” on September 15, 2018. This is his seventh single to be released since 2015. His most popular tracks include “Summer Heart”, “Annapolis Anthem” and “Over My Dad Body.”
The name behind Airbud is 21-year-old Annapolis native, Luke Borchelt.
In “When You Wake Up” Borchelt reminisces on a past relationship in Indiana. Starting as a poem in 2017, the artist could only process his experience though his song. While he was in Los Angeles during spring break shooting the music video for Delta Waves, his friends, Warren Russell and Connor Wilson collaborated to create the track.
“It sprung out of a poem I wrote about this girl, and my inability to choose and commit to her even though I could see how amazing she was. It was me trying to convince myself to love her. It’s talking about breaking someone else’s heart,” Borchelt said.
It’s about more than the music for Borchelt. His music career gives him a platform to discuss issues he’s passionate about. One day, he wants to get involved with politics, hoping to be the future mayor of Annapolis or even the governor of Maryland.
“I’m never going to be the best singer, or the most attractive guy, or the best rapper. That’s not my goal. I want people to relate to my songs. I want my music to help them. I want to tell stories. I want to be an honest outlet for young people,” Borchelt said. “The reason why I am where I am now is because I felt trapped by Christian artists. When I grew up and started thinking about being an artist, I wanted to talk about the real issues. I want to talk about porn, addiction, and struggle.”
In his song “Delta Waves” (feat. JGivens), which was released in 2017, Airbud sings, “I wish I loved myself and never had to hold a flask. I wish the cigarettes were not my way to cope with the past. I wish I could admit my real addiction. I wished I trusted God enough to let him in.”
Borchelt wants to use his music to address issues such as segregation in the church as well. While growing up in Annapolis, Borchelt noticed that two Methodist churches resided on the same block, the only thing separating them is race.
“I can't speak to segregation in the church as a whole, but in the United Methodist Church of Southern Maryland, it's difficult to serve a diverse community without a diverse church. Racism is definitely secondary to stubbornness and complacency when it comes to segregation in these churches. The small, legacy-based congregations are willing to watch the church die in order to preserve a particular experience, and it only hurts the community they are responsible for serving,” said Borchelt.
“OMDB” or “Over My Dad Body” was released earlier this year. This single draws inspiration from Borchelt’s adoration for fatherly figures.
“Ever since I was a kid, I wanted to be a fatherly figure. Growing up, my friends and I always thought being a dad was hilarious. We wore the crusty polos and old sneakers. We always fantasized about being dads. Dads don’t care how they look or dress. ” says Borchelt.
Beginning in elementary school, Borchelt has participated in school choirs.
During his brief time at Taylor University, Borchelt admits he was even a member of a barbershop quartet, “The Night Lights.” This all-male Christian acapella group performed at churches around the Upland, Indiana area.
“My time with the Night Lights Quartet was delightful. In pictures and on paper its cringeworthy, but I honestly love barbershop, do-wop, and gospel music. Nothing gets me going like a four-part harmony, and those elderly Midwestern church folks who would hire us were over-the-moon when they heard college kids singing music that they grew up on.” said Borchelt.
Craig Wishart, creator of Airbud’s most recent cover art describes himself as Borchelt’s “ultimate fanboy.”
“Contrary to popular belief, Luke and I haven’t been friends for a long time. We grew up in the same area but our paths didn’t cross until freshman year of college.The first time we hung out he mentioned he made music, We were sitting on my back porch smoking cigars and he put one of his earliest tracks on. I knew immediately that he was going to be something special. From the day to day, my belief in him as an artist has only grown. He has become one of my best friends (and my roommate) but my faith in him as a musician stem solely from the fact that Luke and his music are worth supporting.” Wishart said.
Wishart also takes on the managerial duties, including reaching out to blogs and speaking with people in the music industry on Airbud’s behalf.
Throughout the interview, Borchelt was adamant about thanking the King’s community for the support he has received for his music.
“I’m so glad I transferred to this school. It was insane and overwhelming,” Borchelt said.”I have no way to thank these people, who talked to me and listened to me and who are freaking out about my music... For no reason, or experience with me...“
Borchelt has racked up over 27,000 monthly listeners on Spotify alone. He has two more songs expected to drop before 2019 and a future country song in the works.