Rubber Opens Up About the Meaning Behind Their New Single “Synth Pop Idol” (Exclusive)

Philly-based duo Rubber has always been honest about who they are, and their new single “Synth Pop Idol” is the perfect way to bring their ideology to song.

Meant to help other artists showcase their true identities, lead singer Andrew Loper (he/they) tells Celeb Secrets that the song is inspired by the pressures they face as a front-runner of a musical group.

“The lyrics deal directly with the pressures I face as the front-person of the band to be skinny, bubbly, consumable. This song is a statement. I am an imperfect narrator; a jester, a musician, an artist, but in no way an idol.” they say in our exclusive interview.

Photo credit: Caro Ramirez

For those who don’t know, Rubber is a writing-producing duo made up of singer-lyricist, Andrew Loper (he/they) and producer/multi-instrumentalist, John Della Franco (he/him) that was formed during their time studying at Temple University in 2018.

The duo creates an intricately balanced soundscape combining their R&B, funk, hip-hop, jazz and soul influences like Frank Ocean, Thundercat, Patrice Rushen, and Amy Winehouse, while maintaining that hot-pink, dynamic feeling of pop music, anthemic and universal. They also shine the brightest in a live setting, as their combination of bass-driven grooves and vocal acrobatics has grabbed and held the attention of audiences up and down the east coast.

We sat down with Rubber (virtually) to talk all about “Synth Pop Idol” and its inspiration, representation in music, and what’s to come for the rest of the year. Check out the full Q&A below and don’t forget to let us know what you think of “Synth Pop Idol,” by leaving a reaction at the bottom of the post or by sending us a tweet at @celebsecrets.

You can also connect with Rubber by giving them a follow on Instagram at @rubbermusic.

Celeb Secrets: Hi Rubber, thank you for taking the time to chat with us! You’ve said that you both find song inspiration from singers like Frank Ocean and Amy Winehouse, but how did you get into music or who inspired you to start making music?

Rubber: “We both got started with music very young in school! Andrew in musical theatre and John in Jazz band.”

CS: Your duo formed in 2018, what was the moment like when you both realized you wanted to work together in the music industry?

Rubber: “We played this open mic on our college campus and the response was really incredible. We got approached by our campus record label after that and we both looked at one another and were like… yea I guess we should give this a try.”

CS: Could you explain the story or reasoning behind the band name ‘Rubber’ for anyone who might not know?

Rubber: “We had to pick a name ahead of one of our first shows. We were in Nashville doing some recording, and were also in the middle of the movie Rubber so we just kind of went with it.”

CS: Congratulations on the release of your new project Synth Pop Idol, how has the release been, and what’s your favorite part about releasing new music?

Rubber: “Thanks so much! It’s gone as well as we could have hoped. The wildest thing about releasing music is that you never know what about a song will stand out to people and it’s almost always not what you thought it would be.”

Photo credit: Caro Ramirez

CS: Andrew, you said that the song is about the pressures you face as the front-person of the band. How do you get through those hard moments, and what have you taken away from having to face these challenges?

Rubber (Andrew): “I’m still working on ways to get through those moments. All I know is that I don’t want to do anything else with my life, so I put on my waders and trudge through. I have recently been working on strategies for resting in therapy, I recently realized that I am not an expert rester.”

CS: John, this song talks about the hard parts of being in a band, what challenges have you faced, and what have you learnt since starting Rubber?

Rubber (John): “Staying inspired has been a consistent struggle, especially during the pandemic.”

Photo credit: Caro Ramirez

CS: Like a lot of other artists you’ve started holding live shows again! You have one on Oct 21st, at the Underground Arts in Philadelphia, and one on Nov 10th, at Kiss Kiss Bang Bang in Los Angeles. What have you missed the most about live shows?

Rubber: “The live in-person energy. The feeling of a community of music lovers getting together to celebrate music and dance together is irreplaceable.”

CS: Do you have any upcoming projects in the works?

Rubber: “We’re gonna hunker down and start work on our debut album. Stay tuned (laughs).”

CS: Andrew you’re very open and honest about being queer but also just being who you are, why is it important to have representation in music?

Rubber (Andrew): “I have always wanted to represent as a queer person just doing my thing. One of my biggest struggles as a queer youth, was seeing queerness completely consume the identities of public figures. They were queer first, artists second. I want to show kids that labels don’t matter, it’s your work, your drive and the way you treat others that matter. Your sexuality/gender identity doesn’t have to be the most important thing about you, just another aspect of your person.”

CS: Since we’re Celeb Secrets, do you have any secrets or fun facts that you’d like to share that our readers wouldn’t know about you?

Rubber: “Synth Pop Idol” and “Queen Cash,” our two newest singles, are actually older than any music we’ve put out in 2020/ 2021, or at least the demos are.


  • Gracie Lowes

    Gracie is a former intern at Celeb Secrets who attends St Clair College. When she’s not reporting on the latest news, she enjoys watching tv shows and movies, reading, going to concerts and traveling.

Gracie is a former intern at Celeb Secrets who attends St Clair College. When she’s not reporting on the latest news, she enjoys watching tv shows and movies, reading, going to concerts and traveling.

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