Damian Lewis has added extra dates to his band’s first ever UK tour to meet demand.
Touring in support of Lewis’ debut album ‘Mission Creep’, released in June on Decca Records, the tour, which starts on 9th September in Nottingham, will now include additional dates in Basingstoke, Eastleigh and Milton Keynes.
Backed by his band of stellar musicians, Damians’ tour follows a run of sold-out shows at London venues Omeara, KOKO, Union Chapel, The Tabernacle and Hoxton Hall, in addition to festival appearances at Wilderness and Black Deer Festival.
Those first live shows at London’s Omeara and KOKO gave him a sense of what leading a band in front of a live audience could feel like.
Having received glowing live reviews from the likes of The Times and The Telegraph, a battle ensured between record labels, with Damian eventually signing to the legendary Decca Records, part of the Universal Music Group.
He wrote all the original songs on Mission Creep during the time afforded to him in the first lockdown of the pandemic. But the album’s origin story began when Damian, after leaving school, took to the road with his guitar and went busking through continental Europe. This experience has stayed with him ever since and is reflected in his debut release.
Acting of course took over, and took off, but Damian kept his hand in, playing the odd wrap party as part of a scratch band. But the idea of actually making a record only came to him during lockdown.
With the time and space away from a busy acting schedule, he was able to throw himself into playing and writing songs, and the ideas started to flow. Damian was taken back to the time he played the guitar every day, but with the additional maturity and experience that an eventful life has given him.
Once the songs were complete, he played them to his friend Giacomo Smith, one of today’s most exciting jazz musicians. Smith liked what he heard and gave Lewis all the encouragement he needed, offering to produce the album. Led by Damian, the pair then set about putting a band together, with Smith introducing him to an array of brilliant musicians, many of whom had played with Smith in the hugely loved and admired Kansas Smitty’s House Band.
“I can’t wait to get out on the road with my band this autumn for our first UK tour,” said Damian. “We’ve played London, we’ve played New York, but now we’re getting serious and bringing the music to the great towns and cities of Gateshead, Nottingham, Brighton, Bristol, Cardiff and many more - AND, am I allowed to say this, “due to popular demand”, we’ve just added three more dates at the start of November so, all of you in Basingstoke, Eastleigh and Milton Keynes, get your glad rags on.”
On its release, Mission Creep received highly favourable reviews, with The Daily Telegraph describing it as “Romantic, offbeat, witty, wise, very touching and unarguably accomplished”. Elsewhere, The Line Of Best Fit concluded “Lewis’s songs are beautifully written and performed”, while Blues & Soul happily advised its readers to “be prepared for something very special.”
Lewis said, “I’ve been blown away by the critical response to Mission Creep, and I hope everybody likes it as much as the critics seem to. All written by me and produced by my friend Giacomo Smith, with one or two favourite tracks thrown in as covers, you might think it’s a little weird that Major Winters is singing you a love song, or that Bobby Axelrod is getting all tender with some Neil Young, or that Nicholas Brody is wailing some up tempo rock ‘n’ roll at you, but come along, see for yourself. Because actually, none of those guys are up there, it’s just me with my incredible band of jazz ‘n’ rock musicians, and we’re in town to give you a great night out.”