The UK has long been associated with producing beloved singer songwriters with the ability to touch new generations of music fans right round the globe. Now more than ever, the rise of social media and music sharing platforms have connected young fan bases with recording artists in the infancy of their careers and in the case of 24 year old Lewis Watson, he’s reaped the rewards of a hard graft, solid work ethic and an online and in-person army of followers who’ve only become more loyal with each music release.
Speaking with Watson ahead of the release of his sophomore album midnight, he speaks of his new album with the unbridled enthusiasm of an artist who is more than ready to explore this new chapter of his career.
“I recorded this album in June of 2015, so I’ve been sat on this for a pretty long time.” he says, chatting the week before album release. “The nerves have just built up and built up and I just can’t wait to get this album out. For it to be so close, is such a good thing for me. I really can’t wait.”
“Releasing this second album is a scary thing; people always talk about the sophomore album being a tough one to do and it’s tricky to do it well. I am nervous but at the same time I am so excited for these songs and I can’t wait to play them live and then get started on the third record.”
Watson’s recent trip to Australia may have been for promotion purposes, but fans won’t have to wait too long before the Brit is back in the country, with a national tour lined up for June. Life on the road is definitely a choice of lifestyle Watson loves, though he admits the last year of relative ‘downtime’ did him a world of good.
“This last year for me was… I don’t want to say ‘quiet’ because I was certainly very busy, but it was a different kind of busy.” he admits. “I was on the road all the time and I was in the studio every second I was free. It was nice to just be at home and to be writing and working on the behind the scenes stuff. For this album, I did it myself and that was something that took a lot of planning and a lot of time. It was great to be able to step back from always being on a plane or always being with the band, whatever it might be, and take it all in.”
“I’m 24 now and looking back at the things I’ve already done in my life, I’m extremely grateful to have even a quarter of those opportunities. It’s just great to sit back and reflect. Now, it’s been very pedal to the metal, which is also great. This is the kind of thing that I’m used to. Having to get up and be at 12 places before lunch, that’s the stuff I live for. I thrive in that environment, I think. It’s such a good thing to be busy and to be wanted at all these places; it’s good to get back on the horse and get started again.”
On the connection Watson has established with his fans around the world, he remarks on the incredible nature of modern music’s reach and his part in it all.
“Music nowadays is so accessible to everybody,” he says. “It’s a dream to be releasing it at this time. To even have the opportunity to come out here, even if we were just doing the promo trip and not doing the tour, it’s really good. I’m very lucky and I’m very grateful to be able to do that.”
“I do love being on the road and playing these songs for people; it’s one of the main reasons I’m doing this. I absolutely love that experience. For me, that’s really exciting.”
With new album midnight set to push Watson further into a rightly deserved spotlight, he comments on the creative market he has found himself as a young artist still developing his craft.
“I find that it’s becoming more expected nowadays for people to be successful, younger.” he says. “A couple of my friends are the same age as me and they’re asking, ‘What do I do now? I still don’t have a proper job…’ and it’s like, you’ve got loads of time. There’s no rush. You’re only 24. There’s that expectation for everybody to be super successful at 16 or 17 and it’s just nice to be in our mid-20s and to have all these experience under our belts.”
“Hopefully it will only build from here – it’s very exciting. I think I’ve matured and I hope it comes across in this second album. Hopefully it entices more people to listen.”
LEWIS WATSON AUSTRALIAN TOUR DATES
June 15th | The Factory Theatre, SYDNEY | Lic/AA
June 16th | The Triffid, BRISBANE | Lic/AA
June 17th | The Evelyn Hotel, MELBOURNE | 18+
June 18th | The Evelyn Hotel, MELBOURNE | All Ages
June 21st | Fowlers Live, ADELAIDE | Lic/AA
June 22nd | Astor Theatre, PERTH | All Ages
midnight is out now.