EDITOR’S NOTE: The creator of this text is Mark A. Stevens, a former newspaper editor and writer who oversaw award-winning newspapers in Tennessee, Louisiana and South Carolina, was govt editor of The Georgetown Instances, The Waccamaw Instances, the Inlet Outloook, The County Chronicle and the South Strand Information from 2014-2017. He’s now director of tourism growth for the Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce. He’s a local of Northeast Tennessee however lives in Pawleys Island, SC, in the present day together with his spouse Amy Stevens.
Thomas Lindsey resides his dream – proper at residence in DeRidder, Louisiana.
Rising up within the 1990s, the 32-year-old remembers, he usually felt like an alien. He was listening to the blues or a traditional jazz reduce from Nina Simone whereas his friends had been listening to Seattle grunge or Britney Spears.
“There’s a tune,” Lindsey says, “by Della Reese referred to as ‘A Stranger On Earth.’ Effectively, I felt like that rising up, however what I would like folks to know is that you would be able to’t be restricted. You may’t let folks inform you that you would be able to’t do one thing.”
Lindsey is talking from expertise. It was, in any case, a Tweet that the budding songwriter despatched to Dave Stewart, Eurythmics co-founder and creator of NBC’s hit “Songland,” that modified Lindsey’s life, taking him removed from DeRidder and opening doorways that solely candy goals are made from. Lindsey had found Eurythmics within the late 1990s when the British duo had returned from a virtually decade-long hiatus for an album referred to as “Peace” and a world tour.
Lindsey, nonetheless sticking to his early love of blues, jazz and even traditional nation, was including new musical experiences to his repertoire, and Eurythmics – and singer Annie Lennox’s distinctive voice – spoke to him, maybe serendipitously.
On July 17, his second album with Stewart — below the band identify Stewart Lindsey — might be launched. Over the previous few days, Lindsey has been fielding telephone calls from reporters from across the globe about how he ended up in an unlikely partnership with one of many world’s most well-known musicians/producers, incomes him a No. 1 blues album in 2016 with the duo’s debut, Spitballin’.
“I knew,” Lindsey defined, “Dave had written and performed with so many individuals who all the time had good issues to say about him, and I knew that he cherished the blues. … So I assumed, ‘I’ll simply tweet him.’ My mates stated, ‘You may’t simply tweet any individual like that. It’s a must to go and play bars for 20 years and pay your dues.’ ”
Fortunately, Lindsey didn’t take heed to the naysayers and fired off that message on Twitter in 2014.
Stewart – a Grammy, Golden Globe and Brit award winner and Rock & Roll Corridor of Fame nominee – remembers that day vividly.
“(The tweet) had a YouTube hyperlink, so I clicked it,” Stewart recalled in a phone interview from his residence within the Bahamas. “I couldn’t see who it actually was at first; I used to be simply listening. It sounded kind of like a Nina Simone-type voice, so I anticipated to see a black woman singing, however it was this ginger-haired, white skinny boy, and I used to be like, ‘What?’ ”
An invite from Stewart shortly adopted for Lindsey to hitch him on stage on the well-known Troubadour membership in Hollywood, California.
“I used to be actually intrigued,” Stewart stated, “as a result of Thomas actually did have that feeling to his voice. It wasn’t realized, if you understand what I imply. It was simply popping out. So I contacted him, and, at first, I don’t suppose he believed it was me.”
As soon as Lindsey realized that the message was, in actual fact, from the very man who had co-written ’80s staples like “Candy Desires (Are Made from This),” “Right here Comes the Rain Once more” and the blues-rock stomper and Grammy-winning “Missionary Man,” he realized what a single tweet can do.
“Dave requested me to return to California,” Lindsey stated, “and sing two of my songs reside earlier than he went on stage, and I stated, ‘However I don’t play an instrument; I write all my songs a cappella.’ So I felt like I wanted to apologize. And Dave stated, ‘No, no, no, no, you don’t apologize, you’re an artist. Simply since you don’t play an instrument doesn’t make you much less of an artist.’ ”
Lindsey’s time on stage, Stewart was satisfied, “could be an incredible second.”
For Lindsey, it was nothing in need of terrifying – not a lot the efficiency, because the act of getting there. The shining lights of Hollywood had been as international to the self-proclaimed alien as one other planet.
“This was the door I would like opened, and that kind of scared me,” Lindsey remembers. “… I had by no means been exterior the Louisiana-Arkansas-Texas space. I had by no means been on an airplane. I used to be scared to loss of life to go. I’m such a homebody – to be completely ripped and disconnected out of your world and every thing you understand and plopped down in California, nicely, I used to be terrified. …
“I assumed, ‘Will the folks of California like my music? What is going to they consider me singing the blues? However they favored it rather a lot and had been actually variety to me. I didn’t suppose I might go that far west they usually wouldn’t suppose I’m some form of heretic enjoying the blues. … But it surely was nice.”
From there, Stewart and Lindsey began making music collectively – Lindsey in Louisiana and Stewart from factors across the globe. Lindsey would write lyrics, report his vocals and ship them to Stewart so as to add music. Or vice versa — Stewart sending music to Lindsey so as to add his self-penned vocals.
Lindsey stated he by no means took the chance with no consideration.
“I knew I had higher pour every thing that I had, vocally and lyrically, into this,” he stated, “as a result of that is what I all the time wished. I stated to myself, ‘You wished to make an album … with Dave. So that is it, that is your manifesto. So I assumed that was going to be it. And I didn’t suppose there could be second album, however then Dave stated, ‘Let’s write one other album.’ ”
Along with his time in Eurythmics, Stewart has earned a fame as a well-known collaborator, working with the likes of Bob Dylan, Stevie Nicks, Jon Bon Jovi, Gwen Stefani, Aretha Franklin and Tom Petty, amongst others.
On “Songland,” the TV present Stewart envisioned a number of years in the past and acquired on the air in 2019, unpublished songwriters vie for an opportunity to have their songs recorded by a longtime artist. His relationship with Lindsey is, maybe, a twist on that very same idea.
Each Stewart and Lindsey name their musical collaboration a “friendship” of mutual admiration. Their new album, which might be launched worldwide July 17, is titled Amitié, French for friendship and a nod to Lindsey’s Cajun roots.
To advertise the primary album, Lindsey traveled to Los Angeles and New York, showing on “The Tonight Present Starring Jimmy Fallon,” which helped push the album to No. 1 on Amazon and iTunes’ blues charts. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, touring to carry out or promote the duo’s newest endeavor won’t be potential.
Sarcastically, the pandemic, which has stored Stewart within the Bahamas and Lindsey in Louisiana, didn’t hamper their recording model. They’d, in any case, recorded individually for the primary album.
On each albums, Stewart’s mastery of the guitar and music manufacturing is paired with Lindsey’s hovering vibrato. The lyrics and vocals are traditional blues, all the time soulful with a juxtaposition between Lindsey’s plaintive wails and call-and-response howls to the anguish of a mushy lament.
“If solely we had identified when the storm got here and knocked us down,” Lindsey sings on “Storm Got here,” Amitié’s opening observe. “We joined collectively and carried on/There’s a loss on the market … so far as I can see.”
Each males are hopeful their second effort might be as profitable as their debut, which earned rave opinions. USA At the moment wrote, “Lindsey’s supply is fierce and soulful, extra about energy than gender (as was Annie Lennox’s) and an excellent match for Stewart’s blues-soaked concoctions. … To be clear, this isn’t the synth-cool ‘Candy Desires’/’Love Is a Stranger’-style Eurythmics, it’s the electrified ‘Would I Lie To You?’/’Missionary Man’-style Eurythmics. Spitballin’ is filled with rumbling, swamp-soaked, high-voltage blues, with live-wire Lindsey lighting up the sound from starting to finish with impossibly intense belting and wailing.”
Lindsey stated he can go for months and never write a tune, however then he’ll discover inspiration and start to jot down once more – or Stewart will ship him a recording of himself enjoying a brand new tune on a dobro guitar, as he did final 12 months from Paris.
“I’ll get a textual content from Thomas,” Stewart stated. “Will probably be like, ‘My Lord, I feel I’ve acquired one thing right here.’ … And I attempt to determine how I’m going to place chords to it.”
For Thomas, who remains to be leery of touring, even when he might, it’s the right setup. In actual fact, he works full time as a contract IT skilled in Leesville, 20 miles from DeRidder. His work with Stewart offers Lindsey an opportunity to showcase an artistry that he’s crafted since a supportive boss a few years in the past urged him to jot down songs – and never simply sing at work.
Assist from Stewart actually took that to a different degree.
“I respect Dave’s artwork,” Thomas stated. “I don’t idolize folks, as a result of I understand that persons are simply folks. All of us have feelings, emotions, and we’re all paying payments and getting in our automobiles looking for one thing to eat. It’s simply life. …
“That’s why I had the boldness to achieve out to him, as a result of I treasure his artwork, and I knew he would get me. … He’s been such an incredible buddy to me, musically. I can pull this deep reduce Nina Simone tune from my head that I don’t suppose anybody would have heard, however he’ll realize it! And he’ll perceive after I say I would like that very same form of feeling, and he’ll play a chord and we might be related.”
Since they’ll’t journey to advertise Amitie, Stewart and Lindsey are recording movies for every of the album’s 9 tracks and releasing them within the days forward of the album’s launch.
“Thomas is obsessive about movie noir, and I like that, as nicely,” Stewart stated. “So we determined to make all black-and-white movies with simply our iPhones. … These are little facet tales that we’re going to put out. It’s about somebody trying to find this particular person referred to as The Scorpion, who’s on the free, however it’s really about one thing in your personal head. … But it surely seems like a Raymond Chandler detective novel or one thing. … It’s very bizarre, surrealistic, very dreamy.”
And that’s applicable because it appears a lot of the Stewart-Lindsey tales appear to revolve round goals.
“I consider God put us on this earth to dream,” Lindsey stated, “and when you’re not having massive goals, then what are you doing with the life He gave you? I don’t suppose it’s best to ever restrict your self.
“Don’t ever let somebody inform you that you just … can’t attain out to somebody. Why not? As a result of that simply is likely to be your blessing.”
And, as Lindsey has confirmed, “Candy goals are made from this.”