Glenn Lewis finds moment of truth
Taking the R&B world by storm in 2002 with his Billboard chart-topping hit, “Don’t You Forget It”, Toronto’s own Glenn Lewis has successfully moved from his first album to his fourth album, Moment of Truth. With this project Lewis is working alongside Grammy award winning producers and artists including Toronto songbird, Melanie Fiona. The R&B crooner had much to say about his experiences in preparation for the album, from his vision, to learning about himself and growing as an artist.
WHY THE TITLE, MOMENT OF TRUTH FOR YOUR FOURTH ALBUM? Moment of Truth had everything to do with the conversations I was having with the producers and all the collaborators. Being that I’m from a different place in my life obviously removed from the other projects that I’ve done, it was really important to me to be the release from my first project, World Outside my Window, to show growth and for people to see a different side… Each song is a moment of truth; each song is a conversation piece onto itself… It was important that the whole energy was there, hence the whole moment of truth thing.
HOW DID IT FEEL WORKING WITH GRAMMY AWARD-WINNING PRODUCERS DRE & VIDAL, CARVIN HIGGINS AND IVAN BARIAS ON THE ALBUM? Well funny enough, they’re kind of like family, so we all came up in the same era; because my album, World Outside my Window, was one of the many projects that kind of came out of that whole touch jazz movement… So the beauty of it is, that’s my musical family, they know me well, they know me on a personal level, they know me creatively, like we’re literally like brothers, so they know when to push me and when to challenge me… We have that kind of rapport with each other, so it’s just a great relationship and it brings out the best in me, brings out the best in all of us because of the environment and the energy.
HOW WAS THE EXPERIENCE WORKING WITH MELANIE FIONA ON THE TRACK “ALL MY LOVE”? It was cool, because that’s like my hometown homie. To see everything that she’s accomplished, needless to say myself and the city, we’re elated and proud of her, I’m super proud. She’s shaping up to be one of the greatest female voices of this generation, but that’s still Melanie to me, that’s still the homie. We’re in the studio and we’re battling each other, like doing scales, and we’ll play around that way, but when it came down to doing this joint, it really wasn’t like work.
WHAT WAS THE INSPIRATION BEHIND YOUR LATEST SINGLE, “CAN’T SAY LOVE”? “Can’t Say Love” was actually sparked out of conversation. When I first got back to Philly in 2012 and I was starting the process of making the album, ran into a friend of mine, singer, songwriter Latif, and I was like I’m in town working on a new joint, I got a situation, and he’s like I’m working with these young cats on the come up, they’re called CertiFYD… I hit him up and I went down there and we didn’t jump into music right away, we didn’t listen to any music or nothing, we just started building. So we’re sitting there and we’re just talking about life, and relationships, and women, and in transition from talking about women, to specific women in our lives, the effect is where there can be that point in your life when you meet somebody where you enjoy just being in silence with each other, where you just have that kind of connection, that comfort… so Latif was like, we just started a song in and around this concept, and I was like yeah play it for me, and he played it and it was the beginning of “Can’t Say Love”.
WHAT DO YOU WANT FANS TO TAKE AWAY FROM THE ALBUM? The feeling that they got an opportunity to know me on a different and deeper level. The thing about music is it’s very signature and very specific to each individual, even if the topics and concepts may be similar, how a person voices or expresses a thing is unique to themselves. So I would want that sort of personal touch be something they identify with and they sort of feel is their own and feel that they’ve connected with me that much more.
“Each song is a moment of truth; each song is a conversation piece onto itself… It was important that the whole energy was there, hence the whole moment of truth thing.”
HOW HAVE YOU GROWN AS AN ARTIST FROM YOUR LAST PROJECT? I’m a lot more patient, considering it took me 10 years to come out with this thing. I would say I’ve definitely become stronger. You know I’ve always admired the strong silent type, and as much as I joke around and stuff like that I would say I sort of adapted that to my character and personality, that not a whole lot phases me, not a whole lot gets me out of pocket. I used to be super-hot headed so it didn’t take much, now not a lot phases me, if it’s not messing with my money or messing with my family I’m good.
WHAT CAN FANS LOOK FORWARD TO FROM GLENN LEWIS FOR THE REST OF THIS YEAR? The beginnings of a strong run in music. I regret that so many years have gone by of me, not that it was even intentional, without the outlet of putting music out. Fortunately in the case I’m blessed to be in a situation where I’m back and this is the beginnings of a stretch of putting out a strong catalogue of music, and my driving force is the way a lot of my heroes musically have inspired me and their music has become the soundtrack to my life.
Interview By. Aliecia Brissett