Chris Lewington’s latest album “Riverside” takes the listener back to the classic singer songwriter sound of the early 70’s but adds a modern twist. There is a very English feel to much of the record including songs about the Pre-Raphaelites ( Firelights) and a setting of a Rupert Brookes poem (Armistice Day). Chris has even invented a new genre – folk disco with his accoustic rendering of the Bee Gees Stayin Alive, which pays subtle acknowledgment to the world wide pandemic. Tracks like Sometimes When I’m With You and Spread Your Wings suggest Chris’s more psychedelic folk pop side the latter track been an ode to The legendary Byrd’s songwriter Gene Clark.
The U.K.’s Chris Lewington has already enjoyed a successful music career, having appeared on the same stage as everyone from Stiff Little Fingers to Jah Wobble and The Breeders. Chris previously played in psychedelic revivalists, The Silence, appearing on the legendary compilation, A Splash of Colour and with The Bicycle Thieves, working with Tony Visconti (David Bowie; T-Rex) as producer and achieving singles success with the band’s style of jangly guitar rock.
Chris Lewington uses a tried and tested technique when he composes a song; he calls it “classic songwriting.” The result is an eclectic array of music built on a foundation of styles from the late 60s and 70s. While at times almost “Beatle-esque,” at other times, one can hear a myriad of influences he masterfully mixes into his compositions. Indeed, there’s an inherently timeless feel within the songs of Chris Lewington.
Chris Lewington has been a musician since his early teens when he first picked up the guitar. His first love was not pop or rock music but movie themes and his earliest musical heroes were the likes of Ennio Morricone and John Barry. Later in his teens, listening to the singer- songwriters of the time he started to write songs. “It struck me how someone like Paul Simon or Leonard Cohen could wrap complex themes of love, life and existence up in just a 3 or 4 minute tune with a timeless melody”
Ready for the stage Chris Lewington started his first band, called The Silence, in the early 80s and released his first singles, “A Car in Denmark” and “The Hangman’s Beautiful Daughter,” The Silence also feature alongside the likes of Julian Cope on the cult compilation, “A Splash of Colour”, that followed the early 80’s psychedelic revival.
By the mid-eighties Chris had formed The Bicycle Thieves, which had a similar style to REM and Lloyd Cole. With The Bicycle Thieves, Lewington penned the singles “Ghostdance” and “Louise,” both of which received airplay on national BBC Radio 1. “Louise” would go on to win the 1989 TDK Songwriter Award.
Another single, “Waterfront” received a lot of airplay and some notice on the UK Charts. Chris also recorded with the renowned producer Tony Visconti during this period.
In the early 90s, Chris returned to his singer- songwriter roots as he started a new project called The Famous Blue Raincoats, a folky acoustic style band that performed in smaller sized venues in and around London. During the 90s and 2000s, Lewington concentrated on writing new material to pitch to publishers.
Why “Riverside”? Simply the name of the road where he lives and wrote and recorded the album – Music From The Big Pink style but in the rural ideal of an English country village by the side of the river rather than Woodstock.
SOURCE: Official Bio
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