I Have A Passion: LEW
Lewis Loh, also known as LEW, is an aspiring and talented local artiste. He has a passion of singing and songwriting. Born in Hong Kong, he was raised there and came back to Singapore when he was 18 to serve his National Service.
Having a natural affinity with music, Lewis had always loved singing from a young age and he would join all the school choirs while he was studying. When he was 17, he picked up songwriting. It all started after a break up, he felt an immense surge of emotions that he have no idea of handling so he wrote them all down and it became a song.
He has also joined a local music programme called NOISE, in the same year when he came back for his National Service. It was one of the little milestones that snowballed into this big passion that has him wanting to do music.
What is the best part of being a singer and songwriter?
“Definitely being able to meet different kinds of people. Even though this circle is full of musicians, all of us are still very different people and we all have different experiences. We come from different places, we have different preferences and just being able to meet so many different kinds of people who share the same passion, that’s something really cool.”
For Lewis, he thinks that the inspiration to writing a song can be just about anything. It is the beauty of writing any kind of piece itself. You could get inspired by a specific emotion that you are feeling at that time, something that you saw earlier today, or even an experience that you just went through. He writes songs so that he can immortalise that moment that he was experiencing.
Michael David Rosenberg, the frontman of Passenger, is his favourite international artiste. So, what does Lewis likes about him? His smart songwriting is a definite. The way he writes his songs is not easy to digest so you have to listen to what he’s singing about to actually understand the deeper meaning behind it. He also a fan of many other local artistes like JAWN, Joie, Hubbas Bubbas, Stopgap, Anecdote and Linying. He feels that all of them brings something different to the table and he respects every one of them as writers and musicians. It is certainly heartwarming to see how local artistes reach out and support one another in whatever they are doing.
What keeps you going?
“I guess knowing that I still have so much to see, so much to learn and so much to do. Because of that, I remind myself that I need to get out of bed to go and experience and do all the things that I want to do. If I want to travel, I need to go to work, to earn money and do that. It’s just a bunch of stuff. The reminder that I have a lot of things to experience, so I need to get up and push through.”
As Lewis lives alone here in Singapore, it does get lonely at times. The past 2 years that he had spent here had been a difficult time, where he learned to be more independent and started doing many things on his own.
“I know that when I get home, no one is going to be there. That’s something that I had to learn to get over.”
To Lewis, the toughest thing to do in his whole life is to stay true to himself. It is so easy to do something just to please someone else, but in the process of doing that, you will eventually lose a part of yourself as time passes.
Any personal beliefs in terms of how you should live your life?
“I think you should live your life without causing pain and suffering to the things around you. So just lead a very clean life.”
In Singapore, it is really challenging to get your music heard. Despite the presence of a small community of people who are local musicians or supports them, there is still little exposure since majority of Singaporeans are not known or supportive of the local music scene. Another thing that Lewis has took away from his local music experience is to not be discouraged by the lack of an audience. He has learned to be happy with a one-person audience, as they took the effort to come down to watch him perform and that is something that he feels, should never be taken for granted.
One of the significant accomplishments that Lewis had achieved would be to release his songs on iTunes. It has always been something that seems impossible when he was younger, as getting his songs on iTunes, along with all of his favourite musicians and artistes, is a really big thing to him.
Any advice that you have for people who are interested in venturing into the music industry?
“Try not to force anything because people will naturally come and listen to your music if they know it’s you and they know it’s true and real. I’m not talking about anyone specific but I feel that there are a lot of musicians who try to be someone else or they try to write and sing like someone else. Because of that, they lose their own identity. So just try not to be anyone, be yourself. And people will come and listen to your music.”
Lewis shared that he has no plans for the future and he just wants to do well in what he wants to do. Since he has always seen music or the music industry as something that cannot be planned for, he feels that plans will not always go in the direction that you wish for and opportunities come randomly, so it is really up to you on whether you want to take them or not. For any art or freelance career, he thinks that it might be good to plan, but also leave a lot of things unplanned and just take it as you go.
Do you have anything to say to the people who have been supporting you so far?
“Thank you so much for supporting me because without an audience, my art will not exist. Thank you guys so much for listening to my music and following my music.”
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