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Victorian Loos and Celtic Singalongs: The Music Scene That Made Damian Lewis
by Jess Phillips | TimeOut Newsletter | July 10, 2023
Before becoming one of Hollywood’s go-to tough guys in shows like Band of Brothers and Homeland, Damian Lewis was a busker, snaking his way into Leicester Square and Green Park tube stations and dragging his guitar across Europe on the back of his motorbike. During lockdown he rediscovered his love of music and has since performed at Wilderness Festival, Black Deer Fest and Cheltenham Jazz Festival, releasing his rock n’ roll and jazz-inspired debut album, Mission Creep, last month. From converted toilets to Celtic singalongs, he talks us through the London music scene that shaped him.
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A Jazzed Up Rendition
by Gingersnap | damian-lewis.com | July 9, 2023
Damian opened the proceedings at the grid ceremony of the Formula 1 Aramco British Grand Prix on race day, Sunday, July 9, 2023. From the starting line he performed the British National Anthem “God Save the King” with a jazz twist and a saxophonist. The day before, Saturday, July 08, 2023, Damian rocked the Paddock by performing songs from his debut album Mission Creep after the qualifying event at Silverstone Circuit in Northampton, England,
View more images from race day/national anthem (DAY 2) in our Gallery here.
View more images from paddock performance/qualifying event (DAY 1) in our Gallery here.
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Once Upon a Time…
by Gingersnap | damian-lewis.com | July 8, 2023
Damian rocked the Paddock by performing songs from his debut album Mission Creep after the qualifying event on Saturday, July 08, 2023 at Silverstone Circuit in Northampton, England, but not before running into his former Once Upon a Time…in Hollywood co-star Brad Pitt! The two can be seen here all smiles as they shake hands and catch up. Media outlets report Brad is filming scenes for an upcoming movie about Formula One racing. And we know why Damian is there!
Damian also attended the rooftop party of Hilton’s Garden Inn Silverstone grand opening on Saturday, bumping into Paris Hilton and Lando Norris. Tune in tomorrow because Damian will perform the national anthem as he opens proceedings at the grid ceremony of the Formula 1 Aramco British Grand Prix on race day, Sunday, July 9, 2023, scheduled from 2:45-2:48 pm BST. View more images from today’s event in our Gallery here.
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“A Small Towel, Some Water and a Bottle of Tequila”
by Simon Gage | Metro SixtySeconds | July 7, 2023
You’ll know Damian Lewis, 52, from award-winning roles in shows like Homeland, Band Of Brothers and Billions, but you won’t know him in his new incarnation as a singer/songwriter about to do shows with his own band. When his wife, actress Helen McCrory, died he turned to music and came up with a bluesy, rocky, self-penned album called Mission Creep and – with the support of his children – he’s getting it out there.
Were people surprised when they heard you were releasing an album?
Er, yes…is the short answer. My close friends and people I’ve grown up with know that I play the guitar and sing.
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Plus a Performance in the Paddock
by Mike Bedigan | Evening Standard | June 27, 2023
British actor Damian Lewis will perform the national anthem as he opens proceedings at the grid ceremony of the Formula 1 Aramco British Grand Prix on race day, Sunday, July 9, 2023, scheduled from 2:45-2:48 pm BST. Also, he and his band will perform live in the paddock at Silverstone on Saturday, July 8 after the qualifying session. Lewis’s performance forms part of Silverstone’s commitment to enhance its music and the arts offering. Some 160,000 people are expected to attend race day with millions more watching across the globe. It’s not the first time Damian has attended the British Grand Prix – view photos of him from last year in 2022 – but it will be his first time performing at the event. Lewis said:
“Never in a million years did I think I’d be singing the national anthem or playing a gig with my band at the British Grand Prix. It’s so special, with a unique festival atmosphere and I’m honoured to have been asked.”
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The Band All Love Playing Live
by Claudia Cockerell | Evening Standard | June 27, 2023
Damian Lewis is accustomed to the strobe of paparazzi bulbs and crowds of fans clamouring for his attention on the red carpet. At its peak, his hit show Homeland was averaging around 7 million weekly viewers. But Lewis is the latest actor to pivot to music, and last week he played an intimate show to about 150 people at Rough Trade, the record store in East London.
The gig was the first since the release of his debut album, ‘Mission Creep’. His sound is folk-rock, with lots of guitar, hints of jazz, and a crooning voice. His influences range from Neil Young to J.J. Cale. What has it been like to go from gracing blockbuster TV shows to performing to a small crowd at an indie venue, I ask? “Fantastic,” he tells me. “The band all love playing live. But we can’t play bigger venues until we’ve proved ourselves in smaller venues”.
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Always Remember to Twiddle Your Knob
by Ethan Croft | Evening Standard Diary | June 26, 2023
Damian Lewis doesn’t know if he is still an actor after making a departure into the music industry. We caught up with the Homeland star as he performed with a band to a crowd of around 150 friends and fans at Rough Trade in Brick Lane. He was playing tracks from Mission Creep, his debut album.
Lewis’s surprise career change certainly crept up on us. When we asked if he still considers acting to be his main job, he said “I don’t know. Watch this space. We’re not very good at changing lanes in this country. We don’t like people to change lanes. It’s just about whether you’re good or not. It’s as simple as that,” he said.
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Boutique Festival of Americana
by Trev Eales | Louder Than War | June 22, 2023
Sometimes, walking into a festival gives a feel for what’s to come. A dusty track leads through a wild flower meadow as people of all ages haul their weekend belongings towards the festival gate. There’s a small queue for the arena but everyone’s chilled and there’s a laid back vibe.
Stetsons and cowboy boots abound as we leave The Garden of England for a world of Americana. Rows of Harley-Davidsons celebrate the iconic bike’s 120th anniversary, and the smell of barbecues fills the air. The rustic Arkansas Porch Stage echoes with acoustic sounds of the deep south as the audience sit baking in the afternoon sun.
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Tattoos and Elvis Guitar Picks
by Gingersnap | damian-lewis.com | June 19, 2023
Presented by Rough Trade East, Damian performed a stripped back set plus live album signing at the Old Truman Brewery located at 150 Brick Lane in London on Monday, June 19, 2023. His performance started at 8:00 p.m. and the album signing began at 9:00 p.m. This unique event was for 300 lucky attendees celebrating the release of Damian’s debut album Mission Creep. More photos from the event in our Gallery.
We were one of those lucky 300 attendees – with boots on the ground – and we didn’t come empty handed. We gifted Damian with some Elvis Presley guitar picks for Christmas (straight from the Graceland store), but forgot to take them to London to one of his other gigs just before the holiday season. So Damian received the picks today as a Happy Album Release Day gift instead. And believe it or not, Damian used one of the Elvis picks at tonight’s gig! 🙂 Watch video about the Elvis pics below:
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Mission Creep: Down Under
by Karishma Sarkari | 9Honey Celebrity AU | June 16, 2023
Homeland star Damian Lewis celebrated a special day over the weekend – the release of his debut album, Mission Creep. On the day his new record came out, and in between filming his new vampire movie The Radleys, the 52-year-old took to the stage to perform at Black Deer Festival of Americana, held in the UK.
Lewis revealed he grew up going to a number of music festivals in “my young 20s, when I started going with pals” and enjoys now sharing the British summer tradition with his children.
“I’ve been to lots of different festivals and I love it. [I] take my kids to Latitude. There’s glamping ways of doing it and there’s real camping ways of doing it – I won’t tell you which one I prefer but I can say I’ve done both,” he laughed.
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Southern Comfort and British Spirit Unite
by Jen Long | The Line of Best Fit | June 17, 2023
Bringing together a diverse line-up, all under the umbrella of Americana, Black Deer’s 2023 edition kicked off with a celebratory sense of collaboration and more than a kiss of sunshine. Everything from folk and bluegrass to gospel and rock’n’roll, Black Deer Festival embraces and celebrates all that rolls into the canon of Americana. Based in Kent’s Eridge Park, the garden of England is transformed into a sea of cowboy boots and stars and stripes for three nights.
British actor-turned-musician Damian Lewis channeled his formative love of Elvis into a raucous set of rockabilly jams and segued from bolstering country-rock to London accented banter with a seamless charm. Playing at The Ridge, the festival’s tent-covered second stage, Damian brought together one of the bigger crowds of the early afternoon with his honky-tonk-ready rock n roll. His Elvis inspiration is detailed in our recent Nine Songs chat. Outside the tent the sun beat down, “I didn’t know we were gonna be inside. I’ve got factor fifty on, and now it’s all in my eyes,” he joked. View more photos from the event in our Gallery.
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Hoedown of the Summer
by Gingersnap | damian-lewis.com | June 16, 2023
Damian returned to the stage for a live gig at the 4th annual Black Deer music festival on Opening Day, Friday, June 16 – the same day as his album release for Mission Creep. Photo above shows Damian playing tracks from his new album to a packed Ridge tent stage. He also signed copies of his album during the festival. According to Soundsphere Magazine, “It’s scorching hot, the BBQ is on and the beers are cold. Damian Lewis has just released his first album and is casually propping up the bar.”
Watch an exclusive clip of his Black Deer performance and interview with ITV News Arts Editor Nina Nannar here. They spoke backstage about what it’s like for Damian to return to music. You can also listen to the interview here or the full podcast here. Damian told Nina,
“My kids don’t like it. Full stop. They want Dad to be dad. And they’re much happier when Dad’s cab is available and running and taking them to school. It’s very interesting when even your own children say, ‘Dad, you’re an actor. Now you’re pretending to be a rock star or a musician.”