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Lee DeWyze plays Lake Land

Matthew Harvey, Multi-Media Manager

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On October 10, American Idol winner Lee DeWyze performed at Lake Land College as part of his 2018 “Paranoia” tour. DeWyze, a Mount Prospect native, visited Lake Land’s Luther Student  Center as the third stop on the tour, and the first of two tour appearances at Illinois colleges. “College campuses always provide an eclectic group,” says DeWyze. “The college audiences seem to have a deep appreciation for music”.

DeWyze is best known as the winner of the season of hit musical competition series American Idol. While his idol win helped to catapult him to nationwide stardom, his musical career predates his appearance on the show. “I started writing music around age 15,” DeWyze said. “Back then, my biggest influences were people like Paul Simon and Cat Stevens.”

From spending his teenage years songwriting, DeWyze was able to muster an independent musical career forming the Lee DeWyze Band and even releasing two solo albums prior to his stint on Idol. On his journey through Idol, DeWyze remained in close contact with his hometown of Mount Prospect, even receiving financial support from a former employer. “It’s important for me to continue to show my gratitude to everyone who’s supported me,” DeWyze said. “Keeping in touch with those roots keeps me grounded.”

DeWyze’s current tour comes following the February release of his seventh studio album of the same name. “Paranoia” is a 10-track long LP performed, produced, mixed, and mastered by NIco Grossfeld and DeWyze himself. He had previously collaborated with Grossfeld on the production of his sixth album, 2016’s “Oil and Water.” “If I had to pick a favorite song off of the album it would probably be “Sink or Swim”,” DeWyze said. “It’s a deeply emotional song and I wrote it from a very real, personal place.”

Artistically, DeWyze has seen some evolution in the way that he releases music videos. The music videos for the title track “Paranoia”, and “The Breakdown,” are both live recordings of DeWyze’s performances of the songs. “I just feel that the music translates best when heard live,” DeWyze said. “Playing live adds a different nuance to it.”

DeWyze also holds his philanthropic efforts just as dearly as his music career, it seems. He says he feels a responsibility to the community to give back. “I want to be able to offer something bigger than myself,” says DeWyze. “I just feel it’s a responsibility of people in my position.

At the end of the day, though, the tour is an ever-changing artistic playground for DeWyze.  “I’m always working on music,” says DeWyze. “The road is my biggest inspiration.”

 

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A Lake Land College Student Publication
Lee DeWyze plays Lake Land