Born: 1971 Primary Instrument: Piano
An Englishman living in Paris, Richard Lewis trained as a classical percussionist before becoming a jazz drummer.
After moving onto guitar, piano, accordion, banjo, hurdy gurdy and a host of other instruments, he spent time as a singer-songwriter on the folk circuit, before composing a number of scores for film, theatre and dance.
Today, equally happy at centre-stage or as a side-man or session player, he returns to the piano to present his own jazz-fuelled songs, alongside flugelhorn player Jean-Baptiste Bridon (Courir Les Rues), saxist and flautist Jean-Hervé Michel and violinist Laurence Freund.
His work sits somewhat insolently at the margins of jazz, ambient, folk and pop, without ever fully belonging to any of them.
Pick of the month ... is Englishman Richard Lewis, exiled in France for five years. Classically trained under minimalist composer Brian Wilshere and by turns jazz drummer, folk guitarist and composer of scores, [he] has created a perfect synthesis of his various influences and experiences. His new album, Untitled is a small marvel, full of hidden treasures, for which he summons not only flighty bursts of avant garde piano and folky guitar picking but also organ, accordion and banjo. The talent and technical prowess of this top-level musician are placed beyond doubt: a kind of UFO in a world of self-produced work in which a garage tendency is the norm. After all these years of work, Richard Lewis has found the magic formula for a complex and extremely rich pop that one never tires of listening to. Difficult to single out a track, such is the success of all of these 11 titles, each of which is marked by the footprint of different musicians (there are ten guests on the album), who bring their touch of violin, oboe, theremin, flugelhorn or cello. Lovers of music and melancholy, this record could very quickly become your new favourite album ...
(Louba Rêve Records, 2010)
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