Melbourne’s Benji Lewis saw his new single ‘Never Leave You Lonely’ go straight into our pile for Pop Single Of 2016 last week. And, according to his publicists, there’s plenty more where that came from.
So we decided to roll out our very first Get To Know feature of 2016.
01. Name : Benji Lewis.
02. Where are you based? Melbourne, Australia for now…
03. How did you get your start in music? It all started flowing nicely, once I got more serious about it and became really focused. Went back to working with my vocal coach, David Jaanz in 2013. Then it was really a matter of networks crossing, working with Jan Skubiszewski and also Michael Delorenzis & Michael Paynter of MSquared Productions on my EP. First public release as Benji Lewis was a track I featured on, ‘What I Want’ with artist Way Of The Eagle through Sony Music Entertainment Australia.
04. Tell us a little bit about your sound and how it developed. My main style of singing when it came to covers was acoustic, spaced-out ballads. I loved having that freedom to sing how I wanted to without having to worry about being completely in time to a set tempo. So when I was thinking about what kind of sound and style I wanted to go for when it came to my original music. My solution was to blend that acoustic style with more of a modern electronic pop to it. I’m pretty happy with what we created.
05. Who have been your musical influences? So this changed as I grew up, but the vocals of the artists were always the main thing that stuck, they all had beauty, strength and true emotion when it came to their delivery. Went through the jazz and ballads as a kid, Michael Bublé was a huge one. Then Adele, Jeff Buckley and Eva Cassidy hit me with everything they had. Then James Blake and Sam Smith most recently got me as well. It was their voices, that’s what I related to most and wanted to put out and express with my music.
06. What are your favourite songs of all time? Now this is a big one, but I’ve always been a lover of songs from Disney movies and just movies in general. Two that stuck from movies would have to be ‘Kissing You’ by Des’ree and also ‘Come What May’ from the movie Moulin Rouge. So much emotion, can never get over these ones. But recently some really beautiful songs that have stuck with me are ‘Memo’ by Years & Years and also ‘1000 Sundowns’ by Emma Louise. All about the vocals, so good. They take you somewhere else.
07. Give us a little fun fact about yourself that people might not know. The colours of the sky when the sun is setting can always stop me in my tracks, I usually just have to take a good photo. The colours are always different, it actually had a fair bit to do with my artwork for the singles and EP I went with.
08. What’s the best advice you’ve been given in your career? Now there’s probably two that come straight to my mind. One was from my coach David Jaanz, he always said to focus on your path and what you’re doing. By all means, check out other artists, support them, be happy for them. But not to worry that where you’re at and what you’re doing is different to another artist. Another is something I think I make sure to remind myself all the time, I’m not sure if anyone ever told me. It’s to always be working hard, even when things are going great, that’s even more reason to do more and have more happening. To always keep the quality of your material at the highest standard, put out your best work, then you’ll always be happy and proud.
09. Tell us about your latest release. My latest release ‘Never Leave You Lonely’ was created in the studio with Michael Delorenzis and Michael Paynter of MSquared Productions. It’s about having gone through heartbreak and then finding someone new that you have feelings for. Then getting it across to them that you understand what they’ve been through and how it feels, asking them to take a risk, a leap and to give you a chance.
10. What do your future plans involve? Future plans are looking really good, all exciting things to come that’s for sure. Through releasing these singles of my upcoming EP, ‘Hearts & Halos’, I’ve had artists, producers and labels from around the world reach out and get in contact with me. Looking forward to collaborating and featuring on tracks to come.
11. Where can our audience catch you live? So no live dates are set as of yet, but my live show is in the works. More focused on getting this EP out there and also working with artists and labels all over. But there are some exciting conversations being had, about guest appearances taking place this year.