Hip-hop artist Choppa hopes his new music video will bring tourists back to Louisiana.
“My mama called me crying. So I'm like, ‘Oh Lord, what done happened?’ And she was like, ‘Boy that song!’ And I'm like, ‘What?’ And she say, ‘It just, it just touched me in a different way,’” Choppa remembers when his mother heard his new song, “Louisiana.”
In 2019, Louisiana had record-breaking tourism. More than 53 million people visited the state.
Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser is convinced this state will bounce back faster than others, but now he has help from a local musician, Choppa, who says the pandemic inspired him to create a new sound.
We're used to seeing the hip hop artist get us moving at a Saints game to “Choppa Style,” but the pandemic year was all about health and counting his blessings.
“I really had time to just sit back and reflect on life and really just spend time with my family,” he said about 2020 when he could not get out and tour or perform.
And he came up with a different, soulful sound about his love of home.
“What I didn't want to do was give them something to party to right now, and they run out in the clubs and catch COVID. I just got into this zone where I just thought about growing up in this beautiful place this lovely site called Louisiana.”
“We need our musicians, and we're working to give more money to promote them around the country, to help them get back out and help us sell Louisiana to the world,” said Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser.
Nungesser says the music ambassador program is one of many ways his office is working to bring tourists back. They pay for musicians travel expenses to gigs and then they promote the state to the audience.
Nungesser said, “Eighty-seven percent of America is going to plan to take a trip in the next three to six months. That is incredible numbers, double what it was just a month ago.”
He is promoting “staycations” close to home, an extra free night in state parks if you pay for three, more Christmas lights coming to City Park to increase holiday travel and Louisiana Lagniappe.
“If you bring your convention or conference to Louisiana, we'll give you free seafood, and we'll hire a local band or musician,” Nungesser explained about the program that is already bringing in groups.
Choppa remembers something the Lieutenant Governor said a while back.
“’The gumbo is hot and the beer is cold,’ so I feel like the music is live and the crawfish is boiling, so y'all need to come back to Louisiana right now,” said Choppa.
Because he says when they do, they always take Louisiana jewels back to their culture.