Stewart Lewis
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Stewart Lewis

Los Angeles, California, United States

Los Angeles, California, United States
Band Pop Singer/Songwriter


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"The Outing of Stewart Lewis"

He’s had the record deal with the major label but got cast aside for corporate mergers—and maybe just a tinge of nerves regarding his flamboyant nature. He turned author for the book Rockstarlet—part autobiography of sorts, a sort of attach on the pigeonholing of the record industry.

But one thing Stewart Lewis never did is give up.

Now feeling at home and comfortable in his own skin as a musician for the first time, Lewis is poised to be the first artist to release an album on here! Tunes, a subsidiary of the gay cable network here! TV. Unlike major labels that shy away from anything that might connect the word “gay” to “recording artist,” here! signed Lewis on the strength of his marketability as an artist precisely because he is gay.

Now, on the eve of releasing his first album for here!, Stewart talks about his ups and downs along the way, his Dawson’s Creek connection and why he needs your votes to open up for Dave Matthews. How has the recording process been for the latest album? I’d imagine there’s a certain freedom you enjoy when you work with an indie?

Stewart Lewis: It’s been pretty amazing. The other records that I’ve made in the past, I’ve had a lot of people down my throat. “Be more rock, pop, blah, blah, blah.” Brian (Goldman, who oversees here! Tunes) is so nice. I think that’s because we seem to have the same sensibility.

GW: I know you’ve done the major label circuit before? What’s the biggest difference this time out?

SL: This is the CD I’ve spent the most time on (laughs). Usually, in the past, you have two weeks to go in the studio—they want you to get behind the mic, sing the track and it has to be perfect. This one I spent over a year working on, and the biggest difference was that. I was able to let the songs develop and spend more time on writing and production, and that brings you a better product. Someone like Moby—a friend of mine engineered his record. He spent five years making play. That might be a little over the top. But having that time, it allowed a lot of things to come together.

GW: Now, I know you were signed to a major label at one point in time—did they let you go because you were gay?

SL: Well, it was the period of mergers, it was a crazy time—and that’s what they told me. But it could have been a simple easy way out, other than saying, ‘You’re a little too gay.’

GW: Working with an indie label and being able to be openly gay, has that changed the way you approach writing lyrics at all?

SL: I don’t think so. I’m not the type of out singer who puts gender specific pronouns in my songs. If I was that sort of person, I guess I’d feel more comfortable about doing that. I do have one track on the album, “This Town”, that is written from a gay prospective… I sing, ‘If God is love, then what’s the hate for.’ I would have never written that before.

GW: You’ve had quite a bit of success in selling songs for television and film—how did that all get started for you?

SL: A couple of ways. The first was from a gentleman named John McCullough. Actually, a fan sent in one of my records to John, who was the Dawson’s Creek music supervisor at the time. It got listened to and they responded well to it. That started, and then he moved to another show and called me up again. That happened a few times—he was a really big supporter of me.

The second was an ad on Craig’s List, if you can believe it, for aposting for reality show on MTV. It turned out to be Laguna Beach and who knew that was going to turn into the hit it did.

GW: I love the fan story—I hope she gets anything she wants.

She’s got the backstage pass for life.

GW: The list of artists you’ve opened for is quite impressive. Who’s the most memorable?

SL: Shawn Colvin. She won a Grammy. The shows were bigger, and they made a bigger impact on me as a performer. Her fans are really receptive to my music. Our styles are not totally similar, but they seemed to respond really well. I felt like a rock star. And then also Ani DiFranco. I’d been a huge fan for years and years. I was totally star struck. When I met her, she told me she liked shoes… she gave me sip of latte and I don’t usually drink those but I did for her. I guess that happens to everyone to some extent. I was reading an interview with Sting, and he said that when he listens to Bob Marley, he wonders why he even bothers to write music.

GW: Of today’s of today’s pop artists, who would you most like to go head to head with on the pop charts?

SL: James Blunt… and I’m not sure why, but something about him bugs me. Maybe it’s because he got such huge success so quickly and I think some of his songs are mediocre. He had this back story where he was a marine and writing songs in the barracks, and the press just glammed on to it. I think he’s talented, but I think he lacks a certain depth, so I’d love to go head to head with him.

GW: So then other than James Blunt, who out there would you say is the most overrated performer right now?

SL: I hate to say it, but Amy Winehouse, and maybe this is because she’s everywhere. When I first heard “Rehab”, I was like, this is cool—it sounds like something from the ’50s—but I just don’t get why she’s so huge.

GW: What surprised you most about making this album?

SL: That it’s taken so long (laughs). No, but as I got into it, I realized, out of all of my releases, this is the one that’s the most consistently great. Out of all my years of writing songs, these are the best. As I started, I realized, this is going to take some time and I didn’t want to be hasty.

GW: But now, the album is almost done—so what comes next?

SL: Well, I should finish the album by end of this month, and then I’m keeping all of my limbs crossed that here! will really get behind the record and promote it. I know they’re planning on getting me in all of the film fests that they support, so I will perform at those and all of the pride ceremonies. So I’m just going to perform and try to get a slot on the Cyndi Lauper True Colors tour. Once the record gets done, I’m hoping the finished product will propel us into doing some serious damage.

- For more on Stewart Lewis, visit his MySpace .
- by Ross von Metzke

"Re-introducing Stewart"

here! Tunes’ premiere singer/songwriter is ready to unloadsome Information

by Jeff Katz

The last year has truly been one of fresh starts for Stewart Lewis. The singer/songwriter and author escaped the noise and distractions of New York City for the Massachusetts countryside, found new inspiration, all of which has led to In formation — Lewis’ brand new album.

Having worked the indie scene for years prior, Lewis also has some new, big-name backing this time around as he is the first artist signed to here! Tunes, the new musical division of here! TV and films. “I am really proud and really excited to be with here! They are a great company,” Lewis says. “In some ways it’s a little bit scary because I’m kind of like a guinea pig, but I think that’s great because they have such a great background and infrastructure for exposure.”

The deal may be new but Lewis is hardly an amateur at the game. Music and performance are in his blood, as his parents were part of a bluegrass band when Lewis was growing up and he often frequented clubs and concerts to see shows. Time in college brought with it musical theater and acting opportunities (including a role on Guiding Light), but music and writing have remained his passions.

“For me, if I work on a record for three months and then take a break and work on my writing, it’s just a great way of getting out of one artistic medium and into another. They inspire each other,” Lewis says. “I just can’t do one thing. I want to make movies now [laughs]. I think it’s an evolving thing. Just go were your artistic mojo takes you.”

That mojo has led Lewis to In formation, his fourth record. The disc has a distinct calm to it, made even more evident upon learning of its creation in the countryside. Lewis feels of all the music he has written, In formation’s tracks best show his maturity as a singer and songwriter, which also plays to the CDs title, exhibiting how he is “in formation” as an artist, while also presenting “information” about himself to listeners.

One of the album’s true standouts (and one of Lewis’ personal favorites), “Come Closer,” surprisingly came about rather easily after Lewis had the opportunity for an intimate meeting with one of his idols, who he prefers to not name.

“I spent an afternoon in his little room, and I was so very inspired by that. I knew that it wasn’t meant to be, we both were in major relationships, but I spent the afternoon with him and it was such an amazing time and we really connected on a deep level,” he says. “And I came home and the song came out in five minutes. It just poured out.”

Intimate afternoons aside, Lewis has also had the fortune of touring with some of music’s more honored singers and songwriters, including Sheryl Crow, Ani Difranco and Paula Cole. But when asked who musically inspires him at the moment, it’s the quirky British girls that have won over his ear, the likes of Lily Allen and Kate Nash.

Lewis will soon make his return to L.A. for a West Coast CD release party at the House of Blues on June 5. He previously called the Southland home for four years while working on his master’s at USC. It was his experiences living in L.A. that inspired his 2006 novel, Rokstarlet, which looked at the pressures of a gay musician having to play it straight in order to gain success. And even while writing material for In formation, Lewis was able to whip out another book, Relative Stranger, to be released in July.

But for right now, Lewis is focused on the music. As he tours a number of clubs on the East Coast, Lewis says that even with 100 songs under his belt, the nervousness of a new record never goes away.

“When I’m making music, I get so inside of it that I can’t have any sort of feeling if it’s good or not. I mean, I think it’s really good, but I can’t really have an objective opinion,” he says. “I’ve been writing songs for a long time, and I’ve made a few records, but I think this should be the one record to elevate my career to the next level.”

Stewart Lewis’ record release party will be on June 5, at the House of Blues Foundation Room. For more information, visit
- In LA Magazine

"Profile: Stewart Lewis by Jenny Sherwin"

Initially, Stewart Lewis' songs tickle your ears. Pleasant melodies and peppy musicality evoke a smile and tingle the senses as Lewis' spiritually infused tunes simultaneously energize and relax their listeners. Then slowly, like musical Prozac, Stewart's music seeps into your soul, with its deep, poignant lyrics and joyful delivery, casting out all negative feelings and creating an emotional transformation so profound that Stewart Lewis may, in fact, be the feel-good artist of the millennium.

The first recording artist signed to here! Tunes, the music division of America's premium gay television network here! Networks, Stewart Lewis has music in his blood. A child prodigy, from a musical family, Lewis sold more than 10,000 copies as an independent performer and opened for esteemed artists such as Sheryl Crow, Ani DiFranco, Shawn Colvin, Paula Cole and Roseanne Cash before joining forces with here! Tunes. His songs have woven a musical tapestry as soundtrack for such popular TV shows as "Ghost Whisperer," "Laguna Beach," "Joan of Arcadia" and "Dawson's Creek," as well as films like "Firehouse Dog" and the recent here! indie hit "Shelter."

With instrumentation so clever that it could make a Buckingham Palace guard grin and a warm, soothing, timeless voice that could turn a great white shark into a vegan pacifist, Stewart Lewis blends the thought-provoking social integrity of traditional folk music and the soft, flowing vibe of adult contemporary to create a sound that evokes both a heartfelt social awakening and a musical inspiration in its listeners. Lewis' music has a mass appeal so acute that anyone who hears it emerges adamant in the belief that each tune was written specifically about him or her; yet Stewart's personal stories and unique perspective as an out performer living in a crazy and complicated, yet delightful, world are evident in each word he sings.

Each track on Lewis' first here! Tunes release, "In Formation," has a personality all its own, like a reunion with 10 old friends in a rustic cabin in the woods, far from the stress and mundanity of the real world. As diverse and colorful as his home base of New York City, every cut is eccentric yet reserved; flashy yet humble and polished yet earthy. Edgy songs like "This Town," about our country's spiral into cultural insanity offset beautiful, passionate ballads like "Come Closer" and "Not a Love Song" for an album that exposes the world's idiosyncrasies while embracing its beauty and simplicity.

In short, listening to Stewart Lewis is like attending an inspiring political rally, taking in the sites of a new and exciting city, falling in love for the first time and then wrapping yourself in a rainbow flag and spinning in the sunshine, while feeling the damp grass on your bare feet and the joy in your heart . . . all in one afternoon. But be warned, Stewart's music has been known to cause in its listeners a swelling of the heart, an enlarged brain, a sharpening of the spirit and fits of giddiness.

[Editor's note: Stewart Lewis' record release party takes place June 4 at the House of Blues on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles. The show begins in the Foundation room at 9 p.m. -- and it's free.Also -- you can visit Stewart's Web site.]


”Clearer” and
”The Chemical”, EP
by Stewart Lewis
Now Available on iTunes

Stewart's highly anticipated first release with here! Tunes, "IN FORMATION"



The first artist signed to here! Tunes (the music arm of America's premium gay network, here! Networks) Stewart has come to give listeners something different: an Out indie artist worthy of their ears. With songs touching on topics ranging from loosing a parent ("Left of Center" dedicated to his father's memory) to the reality of intamacy and the vulnerabilty of love (the beautiful ballad "Come Closer") and even the mad world of celebrity and instant gratification we find ourselves all living in today (the incredibly insightful "This Town") Stewart's songs successfully enrapture a wide ranged audience.

Stewart makes his home in New York City where the eclectic city inspires and energizes his work. The result is a refreshing blend of cool, folk melodies and poignant lyrics that evoke the memories of great singer/songwriters who paved the way for such honest music. Stewart’s music, while influenced by popular artists such as David Gray, Train and Matt Nathanson, offers a unique lyrical experience with heartfelt reflections on our culture from an Out artist’s perspective.

His new album, in formation, features 10 original recordings. Advanced listening has already garnished excitement; especially over stand out tracks This Town, with it’s biting social commentary, the wistful ballad Come Closer, as well as the high-energy, catchy first single Not A Love Song. The album will be available via all major digital outlets including: iTunes, Amazon, Napster, Rhapsody, Yahoo, and Snocap as of Tuesday, June 10th.

His soulful mix of pop and folk earned him opportunities to open for such esteemed artists as: Sheryl Crow, Ani DiFranco, Shawn Colvin, Paula Cole, Roseanne Cash, and Patty Larkin. Stewart’s songs have also been featured in numerous movies and television shows, including the recent here! indie hit film, Shelter. Mainstream America has also embraced his songs on popular programming such as CBS’ Ghost Whisperer, MTV’s Laguna Beach, Joan of Arcadia, Dawson’s Creek, Biggest Loser, and the 20th Century Fox major motion picture Firehouse Dog.

here! Tunes executive Brian Goldman notes that “in an industry which mass produces homogenized so-called hits, Stewart’s songs are set apart by his ability to share his stories in a way that resonates with any listener. He is writing songs that actually mean something to him, and that translates into them meaning something to the listeners. Aside from being a talented musician and lyricist, it was the conviction in his singing that sealed the deal. After seeing him perform live it’s impossible to deny, he is an artist whose voice will be very important.”

Insiders are buzzing about Stewart’s upcoming CD Release Party in Los Angeles on Thursday, June 5th at The world Famous House of Blues on Sunset Boulevard @ 7pm. Out Magazine will sponsor the event.

Along with his upcoming here! Tunes release, in formation, Stewart’s second novel, Relative Stranger, with gay literature publishers, Alyson Books, is also slated for a summer release.

For more information on here! Tunes artist Stewart Lewis, including upcoming tour dates please visit his Myspace page @: