Tuesday, December 4, 2007

So Many Blake Lewis!!!!

Just a mix of all the Bshorty news as of late....

Blake Lewis interviewed by Ron Corning and Jody Applegate on Good Day New York on 12/4/07.

Blake Lewis Good Day New York 12/4/07



December 2, 2007 -- Blake Lewis may have finished behind "American Idol" champ Jordin Sparks back in May, but he was recently named the most popular artist on AOL on the strength of his first single, "Break Anotha." His album, "Audio Day Dream," which hits stores Tuesday, has the feel of an '80s mixtape, combining hip-hop and electronic influences. The Redmond, Wash., native has come a long way since his high-school beatboxing days.

- Joseph Barracato

When did you first start singing?

When I was real young. In eighth grade I went on tour with a professional youth choir in Europe. Just picture me in a robe singing "Alleluia" in Wales. But it was an unbelievable experience.

Then later you were in an a cappella group.

For four years - we were called Kickshaw. It was with a bunch of guys I met in high school. They needed a beatboxer and I just got into that. I loved making all kinds of noise, scratching and sound effects, and I still do. I have a deep-rooted love for hip-hop.

What made you try out for "Idol"?

My friend called me at 10 p.m. the night before and asked me to go with him. It turned out to be a blessing ... and absolutely amazing experience.

Nice job snapping up Lupe Fiasco for a guest slot on the CD.

I wanted to have a talented, conscious rapper and boy did I get one. I'm very fortunate to have worked with him. He's amazing.


Blake Lewis - A.D.D. TV ad



This runner-up is leading the pack...

The last time we saw Blake Lewis, he was wiping the floor with Doug E Fresh in a beat-box battle on the American Idol season finale. Well, he's back, and if early spins of his new record, Audio Day Dream, offer any indication, Lewis is poised to outdistance last year's champion, Jordin Sparks.

The album won't be released until December 4, but the first single, "Break Anotha," is available as a free stream now. Hear it here.

In an exclusive interview for Amazon.com, Lewis talked about the song. "The concept for 'Break Anotha' is actually about the bad side of me," Lewis explains. "Me telling this girl to stay away from me. I'll break your heart, you know? Not that I'm trying to be a player, but I'm a hopeless romantic, so I wrote a whole album about the one thing that I love in life: women."

Fans can look forward to some interactive offerings from the Blake Lewis camp in the future. "I totally want to do a remix competition, release some files, have tons of producers re-mix the album and have some MCs on it," Lewis says, "but we've got to see how this album goes first."

Meanwhile, you won't hear Doug E Fresh on the album. "He actually came to the studio one night, and we should have just done something there," Lewis sighs. "I don't know why we didn't stop everything. It was dumb. We were talking about what we needed to do instead of doing it." However, hip-hop heads can look forward to a track with Lupe Fiasco, who lends a verse to "Know My Name."

One curse Lewis didn't escape was the trend of regrettable album covers adorning the debuts of American Idol runners-up.

Nevertheless, if there's one thing the stellar success of this Northwest beat-boxer and all-around entertainer demonstrates, it's that you can't judge a pop star by his cover.


Blake Lewis's Horny Daydream


WHO: Blake Lewis [ft. Lupe Fiasco]
WHAT: "Know My Name"
WHY: The cover of American Idol runner-up Blake Lewis's debut album, Audio Day Dream, is shocking for all the wrong reasons: it's garish, over-the-top and looks like a rejected iPod poster. The music found on the album is shocking for all the right reasons: it's funky, filled with '80s-pop hooks and sounds like a knowing mash-up of Prince and Maroon 5 (with some questionable beat boxing mixed in just because, you know, that's his thing). Here, Lewis pines for an unreachable starlet over subtle eighth-note synth stabs: "I want you to know my name/ Girl, I just ain't got no shame." Considering his supermodel MO and overall stud vibe, Adam Levine wouldn't be able to pull this song off believably; but we have no doubt Blake's dream girl has no idea who he is. The song plays like a particularly flighty imagination trip — like he wrote it while staring at Scarlett Johansson on the other side of the velvet rope. Lupe Fiasco — another unabashed nerd — is a perfect fit here, and he sounds like he's having more fun on this track than on his own recent singles. The rapper's come-ons are clever ("I boss like a last level") and characteristically intricate ("So keep your eyes on me/ Your 'yes's' on 10 and your 'why's' on 3/ Your 'no's' on zero and your fear on the same/ Check your new tattoo you wanna know my name." Does Blake get the girl? Let's put it this way — did you see that album cover?!
WHERE: Listen to the track here.




One can't help but proceed with caution when an album is named after Attention Deficit Disorder, especially when the artist caught his break by beatboxing on a reality TV show where he used to sing the praises of 311. But skeptics can relax: "American Idol" season six runner-up Blake Lewis' debut, "ADD: Audio Day Dream," is indeed a little all over the map, but, surprisingly, it works. Unlike other run-of-the-mill debuts from former "Idol" contests, "ADD" is packed with electro-funk jams, hip-hop beats and soaring ballads that explode with Lewis' personality and uniqueness. Taking cues from Justin Timberlake ("Break Anotha"), Erasure ("End of the World"), Prince ("She's Makin' Me Lose It") and the Police ("1,000 Miles"), Lewis gives fans plenty to get excited about here, even those with short attention spans. —Jill Menze


Music Review: Blake Lewis does his thing


Blake Lewis, "Audio Day Dream" (Arista Records)

Much of bubbly Blake Lewis' screen time on "American Idol" was spent struggling to fit the roundedness of his motley mix-tape aesthetic into square songs from mature artists. With the harsh reality of that reality TV competition behind him, this "Idol" second place finisher is now liberated to enchant with his own "Audio Day Dream."

And he does. Mostly.

The radio-friendly fantasy begins with some hip-hop stained songs that, at least musically, are as curiously pleasing as the blond boy wonder's streaky dye job. The album's lyrics, which seem like they're all directed at one woman (or several women, perhaps), are primitive yet passable for inoffensive pop.

Thanks to super-producers like Jonathan "J.R." Rotem and Ryan "Alias" Tedder, everything on "Audio Day Dream" is completely original. That's right. You won't find Lewis' bizarre rendition of The Supremes' "You Keep Me Hangin' On" here, although he does successfully shoehorn baseline inspiration from Irving Berlin's "Puttin' on the Ritz" into the mega-charged "Gots to Get Her."

Lewis makes the best use of his skills — signature scatting on the break-up letter "How Many Words," infectious falsetto on the synthy "Surrender" and a penchant for oscillating arrangements on "What'cha Got 2 Lose," co-written by Rotem and Lewis' "Idol" B.F.F. Chris Richardson.

Surprisingly, the beatboxing that made Lewis stand out from the "Idol" crowd is simply splashed throughout the 14 songs and is only predominantly featured on one track, the unremarkable "Bshorty Grabs Mic!" Such a lack of spit might leave some Bshorty fans craving ma-ma-ma-ma-more.

Three snoozy ballads ("1000 Miles," "End of the World" and "I Got U") plague the second half of "Audio Day Dream," a wake-up call that the vocally limited Lewis is no vocally gifted Justin Timberlake. Maybe the Blakester should've pulled a Britney, Madonna or Gwen and just conjured a full-fledged dance record instead?

Weak downtempo songs aside, "Audio Day Dream" is the most exhilarating effort from an "Idol" runner-up yet.

CHECK OUT THIS TRACK: Besides the joyfully aloof first single "Break Anotha," Lewis uses his best assets — that Robert Smith-silkiness and Freddie Mercury-showmanship — on "Hate 2 Love Her," a catchy tune sure to appease the tweens, grandmas and everyone in-between who simultaneously squealed while voting for him on "Idol."


Breaking it Down with Blake Lewis (VIDEO)


Blake Lewis' beat-boxing skills gave "American Idol" a whole new sound and rocketed him to stardom.

Now, the young musician has a new album and he's showing "Extra's" Tanika Ray how to rock out!


Wanna have Blake answer your phone for you?


Visit that website and download one of three greetings for your phone!


Album Review: ADD


Blake Lewis // Audio Day Dream » Audio Day Dream (Arista), or A.D.D., is the name of American Idol’s runner-up Blake Lewis’ new album out right now, it includes the first single “Break Anotha” and a track featuring Lupe Fiasco entitled “Know My Name.” I was going crazy becos this album would NOT leak for anything, instead it appeared in full first within the “Free Full CD Listening Parties” section on AOL.com on December 3, the day before the album release! Those crafty bastards… Anyway, I digress (somewhat), but wasn’t disappointed with the overall delivery of Lewis second time around listening. It was some solid production and well put together arrangements for A.D.D. I was highly impressed. The album is like some retro 80’s, futuristic, sci-fi, dance-pop and r&b all fused together — I love it!


Our Exclusive Interview with Blake Lewis


If you thought Blake Lewis looked like he was out there having a good time last season, fairly oblivious to his achievements…you'd actually be correct. In our exclusive interview with Blake, he revealed that he liked to do his own thing, and rarely even considered the voting. In fact, one night he was bowling with friends, they were all on their cell phones. When he asked them what they were doing, they said that they were all voting for him!

That doesn't mean that he wasn't pleased with his ultimate success, however. As he likes to call it, "Idol" was the "best experience I'll never have again." He went on to say that it was great that he had the opportunity to get out there and be himself in front of millions of viewers. The exposure he got was invaluable. And he's certainly been taking full advantage of that since appearing on the show.

Blake has only had about five to ten days off in the past year. Even while touring with his fellow Idols when the season ended, he used his days off to work on his upcoming album. He either flew to Los Angeles or someone flew to where he was on the tour. He has no regrets, however, calling the entire experience "a blast." Don't expect him to succumb to the Hollywood scene, though. He said that no matter how well the album does, he plans on staying in Seattle, calling it a "more chill" place to live.

In putting together his upcoming debut album, Blake also made sure he was able to put his creative touches on each song. In fact, he co-wrote 12 of the 13 tracks. However, this wasn't a new thing for Blake, who's done quite a bit of songwriting in his career already. He even did some songwriting while on the tour bus for the American Idols Live! Tour. In fact, buddy, fellow Idol, and songwriter Chris Richardson helped him to pen the track "What'cha Got 2 Lose?" Blake says, though, that the songwriting on the album was slightly different, in that he had a whole team of creative individuals helping him get what he wanted to say out there in a way that will appeal to his fans. His fans are extremely important to Blake, which is why he does such extensive outreach via the internet. The "Say More" campaign and all the work on his MySpace page is under Blake's control.

Blake has been known to call "How Many Words" one of his favorite tracks on the album, as it "came from a good place" and is "very relatable." However, after working so hard on the entire CD, he did say that pretty much every song has become his favorite. According to Blake, his signature beatboxing is "sporadically placed throughout the songs." You might not recognize all of it as beatboxing, though. Blake was sure to make a good deal of it sound like an instrument or another part of the sampling that he does throughout his songs. He recently shot the video for "Break Anotha," which he says is a high energy video that features a series of vignettes and is narrated by Blake.

Surprisingly enough, Blake says that he doesn't feel he took a lot of risks while appearing on "Idol." He said he was just "trying to have fun." He went on to say that if he was really going to go out on a limb, he would have beatboxed an entire song, which he knew he couldn't do because of it being a singing competition. However, you can expect to hear an entire track of beatboxing on Audio Day Dream…in fact, it is the first track on the album.

Look for Audio Day Dream to hit stores TOMORROW, December 4th! In the meantime, Blake suggests that everyone go out and support their local art. Wanna get a sneak peek of the video? Check out the album trailer now! Also, make sure to take a look back at the "many styles of Blake" in his transformation gallery!

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