Hampton “Lamar” Walker, a junior broadcast journalism major at Southern Miss, will perform an hour-long show and host a listening party at Jazmo’s at 9 p.m. on March 14 to celebrate the release of his new EP.
Starting his music career a year before moving to Hattiesburg for college, Walker has built a name for himself through singing competitions and open mics. He has opened for many bands around Hattiesburg, but he most notably opened for famous Atlanta rapper B.o.B. at Eaglepalooza in 2017.
Walker said that he built a relationship with Trey Sullivan, owner of the music venue Jazmo’s. “I think he took a liking to me, and [he] always reached out to make sure I would come through or always show love when I did come through,” Walker said. “From the open mics, he would have me as a feature artist, so I would have people opening up for me. So [my career] was built upon the foundation of the open mic to being the guy who has people opening for him.”
Sullivan said Walker’s sound has matured since his first appearance at Jazmo’s. “His sound has progressed from an acoustic sound – because he plays guitar on set – and progressed to a more modern sound.”
Sullivan said, “The good thing about Hampton is that he is [a] pretty versatile and talented guy. He adds to the melting pot that Hattiesburg is becoming with the different sounds of music.”
Walker’s rap-focused EP is titled “Two Time.” He said the name ties back to when he and his original manager had a falling-out, which resulted in the deletion of all of the music he had previously released. The EP will feature four of deleted songs and four new songs.
Walker said, “I try to draw inspiration from people who made a way out of no way. Whether it be music or film, I just like the idea of someone who persevered and finally got the payoff, because I am still persevering. I don’t have the payoff [yet], but it is cool to see people who were in my position.”
Miguel “Prymo” Linan, a sophomore English major plans to attend the listening party. “For Hampton’s music, I do have to say that it’s provocative without being in your face. He stays away from the standard fair that we find nowadays,” Linan said.
The listening party will continue until 1 a.m. Walker’s music can be found on Spotify and Apple Music now under the artist name Hampton Lamar.