Richie Carter – Dark Hearts


Midwest artist Richie Carter recounts personal romance narrative to create music of substance

ROCKFORD, IL – Born Erich Kalstrom, the rapper, songwriter and producer known as Richie Carter is a rising artist who hails from a city less than 90 miles outside Chicago. A highly creative lyrical and descriptive force, Richie consistently delivers conscious music portraying great emotion.

Continuing to display his talent for passionate storytelling, his single “Dark Hearts” is destined to be a hit. Written for his fiancée when they first began dating, the song tells the story of how their relationship started. “It’s kind of like a dark but optimistic, little love song,” Richie said. While he was living in California, Richie reconnected with her while he was back in Rockford for his mother’s funeral.

The single is one of six songs on Richie’s “Sappy Hour” EP, which was released in the middle of last year at the same time as his R&B/Rap EP, “Too Much Whiskey.” A romantic love story collection, “Sappy Hour” is based on his real life relationship. The entire EP is about his fiancée, and shares the in depth story about the course of their relationship — who they are as people and their healthy differences.

Describing himself as “a regular, simple dude,” Richie is different from most of today’s rappers and R&B artists. He lists his greatest musical influences as Tupac Shakur, Lil Wayne, Drake and Jay-Z, but Richie is not as eccentric and eager to be radio friendly. Richie does have a knack for making music with meaning, conveying highly relatable themes. One of the EP’s standout tracks, “Little Things” talks about the little things he appreciates about his fiancée, while the song “Ghost” conveys the difficulties of trying to do the right things during a long distance relationship in order to end up together.

Growing up in Rockford, a city with a decent music scene where nearly everybody is into making their own music, profoundly influenced Richie’s sound. Growing up, he and his two best friends were obsessed with music. “I think we had every single Cash Money record, every single No Limit record, cassette or CD,” he said. “We had every Tupac, down to every Makaveli mixtape that you could only get in Chicago.” There is great passion for music in Rockford which has a bad reputation for violence and unemployment. “A lot of people here seem to lean towards music as a way to cope and get through things.”

Captivating music from Richie Carter is available on all digital platforms, and he has ambitious plans for the coming months. After buying a house for his growing family, he plans to build a home studio by July. His next project, an EP titled “The Kids Are Watching,” should follow shortly.

To listen to Richie Carter’s music or to follow him on social media, please visit:

“Sappy Hour”

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